To the editor:
Bishop Clark’s Courier comments about the Iraq war raise many questions: Does he still think of war as governable by law? How do civilian casualty rates of 90 percent, torture as SOP, depleted uranium, and brutal attacks on urban centers speak of U.S. concern for human rights and lives of Iraqi civilians? Does his concern to avoid even the appearance of being “unpatriotic or not supportive of our troops” mean there is no U.S. war imaginable that he would not support once the troops were sent in? Why was Bishop Clark’s original stance not followed by logical, traditional teaching that Catholics may not participate in unjust war. Can there be a just end to war that began and continued unjustly? What are we to make of such peculiar use of just/unjust war theory along with avoidance of any teaching based on the Gospel? Does Bishop Clark believe that Jesus meant what he said and knew what he was talking about when he commanded love of enemies in the Sermon on the Mount? Does it make sense to pray for “guidance as a nation” when the guidance Jesus gave disciples concerning violence is ignored?
This “war on terror” is now read clearly as war for U.S. world domination. Like the war in Orwell’s 1984 it will never really end. Since 1991, two million Iraqis have been killed by war and sanctions, not counting the unborn. One is led to ask how Bishop Clark expects to “work passionately for a just end to this war” while Catholic troops answer “the call of our president.” The way out of “this mess” is for our bishop to end legitimization of Catholic participation in the war through a definitive use of just/unjust war theory followed by a clear teaching of the truth of Gospel Nonviolence.
Cold Springs Road