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News > War in Iraq

War in Iraq

IRAQ: Peace Councilors Oppose U.S. Plans for War with Iraq (October, 2002 statement)

The following statement by members of the Peace Council was sent to the Associated Press and to other media on October 2, 2002. The statement was signed by Swami Agnivesh, Dr. Saleha S. Mahmood-Abedin, Dr. Dalil Boubakeur, Dr. Elise Boulding, Rev. Marcus Braybrooke, Swami Chidananda Saraswati, Sr. Joan Chittister, osb, Prof. Chung Hyun-Kyung, Ven. Dhammananda Samaneri, Samdech Preah Maha Ghosananda, H.H. Tenzin Gyatso, 14th Dalai Lama, Fr. Thomas Keating, ocso, Mrs. Máiread Maguire, Dr. Chandra Muzaffar, Most Rev. Samuel Ruiz-García, and Most Rev. Desmond M. Tutu:

We members of the interfaith and international Peace Council are opposed to wars of all kinds on moral, spiritual, and practical grounds. Similarly, a war between the United States and Iraq would do nothing to resolve the tensions in that region in the long run. It will make them worse. The costs in human suffering – especially for the women and children of Iraq – would be overwhelming.

The situation is very complex and there is certainly no guarantee that a war against Iraq will bring stability and security to either Iraq or the United States. On the contrary, a war would fuel frustration, extremism, and fanaticism, and may even create new blocs that would increase the likelihood of continuing violence and terrorism.

We call upon our fellow members of the world community to make every effort to halt such a war before it begins, through creative diplomacy and non-violent means, and to work peacefully together to remove the root causes of war and terrorism.


(BAGHDAD - New York Times, 8 April, 2003):The scene at the foot of the bridge over the Diyala River was one of utter desolation, with the ground littered with dead and smoldering Iraqi dead. Burning vehicles sent plumes of black smoke billowing into the sky. The air stank from the smell of so much afire.

Only the stray dogs, nosing around the flesh and flames, seemed alive.

Thousands of American marines poured into the Iraqi capital today after capturing the bridge in a day-long firefight, and crossing at two other points as well. Battling tenacious opposition, the marines moved about a mile into the southeastern corner of the city, securing a foothold and silencing most Iraqi opposition by nightfall.

"It's a little sobering," said Capt. Sal Aguilar, standing in a field with dead Iraqis all around him. "When you're training for this, you joke about it, you can't wait for the real thing. Then when you see it, when you see the real thing, you never want to see it again." ...

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Page Published: 07/17/2002 · Page Last Modified: Thursday, December 6, 2007
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