Statement on Iraq

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Sick Canary:
What do you all think of this?

From Metropolitan Philip's letter on Iraq.

"cause untold harm to countless children and other civilians "

Oh?  Is untold harm being done now?  Do we care?

"In addition, the geo-political imbalance this war would cause "

Are we expert on geo-political balance now?

"to allow the United Nations inspectors to complete their mission"

And  the big obstacle to UN inspectors doing their job is the US???

"History has proven that this rarely comes to fruition"

Oh?  And now we are expert on the history of nationbuilding?

http://www.antiochian.org/News/Release20021009_Iraq.html

Vladika could be absolutely correct on every issue and still miss the mark.  Is this really what we need from our bishops?  It only serves to make Orthodoxy look worldly and uninsightful.  I have no opinion about Iraq but I have a burning opinion that it should take a great deal to pry our bishops away from the ministry of the word and onto politics.

If I want to know about Iraq I'd probably read this site.

http://www.iraqifd.org/events.html

In peace,

Symeon

Justin Kissel:
I mean no disrespect to my Metropolitan, but the statement seemed like his typical political/ideological rhetoric. It was not by coincidence, for instance, but was a calculated political/idological move, that he attacks--without actually naming--Israel. (the ideology I speak of is Metro. Philip's anti-zionism and some other interesting views held by his Eminence regarding the Jews)

At this stage in the game, I agree with the Metropolitan's position regarding Iraq: I think we should try to work through peaceful means to attain our goals. And we shouldn't move through these means as though we are just "going through the motions" with the full expectation that we will go to war. We should pray and hope that, at all costs, we can avoid war. If, however, peaceful means don't work, I would most likely disagree with my Metropolitan. For instance, he says:

Quote

We are gravely concerned, however, that a war against Iraq will create even more chaos in the region.

Well let me give a scenario that would cause even more confusion, and is not only possible, but perhaps even probable, if we don't act. Let's say we keep trying to use peaceful means for years, and Saddam keeps leading us around by the nose, revealing what he wants to reveal to us and keeping hidden what he wants to keep hidden. Five years down the road he starts invading neighboring countries, announcing that he has a nuke capable of striking Jerusalem. He warns that any attempt from the west to hinder his military movements will result in his launching the missile and countless people dying. Does anyone think we'd have the guts to attack him knowing that hundreds of thousands of innocent people would be murdered if we tried?


PS. And the scenario, of course, needn't use only a nuke as it's "weapon of destcruction." Saddam could also say something along the lines of "I will start using chemical weapons against the peoples living in the lands our armies are now occupying if the west intervenes," and we know full well (considering what he's done to his own people) that he would have no problem doing this.

Robert:
The only problem I have with the article is that not once does Metropolitan Philip ask that we PRAY for the leaders of our country as well as Iraq. Isn't prayer a cornerstone of Christianity?

I certainly don't agree with the US proposal to invade Iraq. One of the reasons being, that I am of draftable age and not currently in school. A long standing campaign against Iraq, especially with urban warfare, would in my mind mandate that they start sending over drafted troops to fight a bloody war that would not be won.

I think our best method out of this madness is fasting and prayer, that way if we are put to the test, we will be ready.

Bobby

Sick Canary:
Quote from: Bobby on October 16, 2002, 12:44:34 PM

The only problem I have with the article is that not once does Metropolitan Philip ask that we PRAY for the leaders of our country as well as Iraq. Isn't prayer a cornerstone of Christianity?

I certainly don't agree with the US proposal to invade Iraq. One of the reasons being, that I am of draftable age and not currently in school. A long standing campaign against Iraq, especially with urban warfare, would in my mind mandate that they start sending over drafted troops to fight a bloody war that would not be won.

I think our best method out of this madness is fasting and prayer, that way if we are put to the test, we will be ready.



I agree with you on the prayer thing.  I wish he'd written something like this.

For instance.  If he said..."The middle east political situation is very unstable.   Not only because of local problems but because of the possibility of involvement from world supepowers outside the region.  We have long been concerned about the difficulties of Christians in the middle east and we urge your prayer for all of these pepoples...(mention a few).  But because Christ is for all and His message is for all we pray for peace  everywhere.  Man makes his plans and goes about his business on the earth, but God establishes and removes kingdoms and kings.  The princes of the earth belong to God.  Orthodox Christians must never allow nationalistic impulses of any kind to supercede our devotion to Christ or allow such passions to cloud our vision or witness."

Right or wrong on the politics.  I just don't want politics from bishops.  I can get it 24 7 from people who had better know a whole lot more a bout it.

In peace,

Symeon

Anastasios:
My thoughts:

1) We need to take out Saddam Hussein now.  It's pretty obvious that he is building weapons of mass destruction.  The question boils down to "are preemtive strikes morally justified?"  I say yes, if the evidence is clear.  How much sense does it make to sit around and wait for him to actually build a bomb?

2) I agree that the US policy is hypocritical, though.  My opinion is funding to Israel should be gradually tapered off according to a schedule and let the UN make a buffer zone--a big fence even--between Israel and Palestine.  I don't agree with cutting off funding totally, because although I am pro-Palestinian, I know what the Arabs would do to the innocent Jews living in Israel if they got  the chance.  There needs to be at least a generation of separation where one side is NOT getting US Aid, and then someone (not just us) can try and figure out how to let the two nations coexist.

3) I don't understand how Met. Phillip can say the war in Afghanistan was "unsuccessful."  We went in, took out Al Qaida and the Taliban, the people were happy, we prevented further threats, and a democratic regime is forming.

4) The Balkans are totally different than Iraq, for God's sake!  Serbs and Kosovars were and are fighting over ethnicity and land.  Iraq is lead by a despotic nut.  Big difference.

In Christ,

anastasios

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