Pax Christi USA is saddened by the violence which has gripped Iraq in recent days and which has led to further suffering for the people of that nation. The people of Iraq have borne the brunt of violence for far too long and our hearts are broken over the killing and displacement now taking place. We join Pope Francis—and people all over the world—in praying for an end to the violence and for “security and peace and a future of reconciliation and justice where all Iraqis, whatever their religious affiliation, will be able together to build up their country, making a model of coexistence.” (Pope Francis, June 16, 2014)

In response to the recent unrest in Iraq and the possibility of the crisis continuing to spread, Pax Christi USA is unequivocal in its assertion that U.S. military intervention will not achieve the peace and stability that the people of Iraq deserve. A military solution—whether it include air strikes or ground troops or an increase in the flow of weapons into Iraq—will only serve to increase the suffering of the Iraqi people, not alleviate it. Furthermore, military intervention increases the risk of widening the conflict in the region.

Pax Christi USA calls for a fully inclusive international diplomatic process to address this crisis. The crisis, while centered in Iraq but also including the ongoing tragedy in Syria, is regional in nature and requires a multi-lateral diplomatic response initiated by the United Nations and including regional authorities like the Arab League. The hope for a peaceful solution lies in an effort which addresses the political concerns of all the major factions in the region.

We believe that the unfolding tragedy in Iraq is a direct, if unintended, consequence of the U.S. invasion and occupation of that country. Further military intervention will only exacerbate the situation and perpetuate the cycle of violence and suffering. We pray that the hearts of those in power will be moved to solutions which offer the promise of an end to war. We encourage all people of good will to demand from our leaders that they recognize the failure of military options to bring about the security and peace the Iraqi people deserve and to put their efforts into political, diplomatic solutions to end this violence once and for all.

11 thoughts on “STATEMENT: Pax Christi USA official statement on the crisis in Iraq

  1. Well stated! We might also add all the costs incurred by an unproductive and immoral military intervention in this civil war in dollars and additional human life. So much human need is left unfunded in our own country and around the world. Unfortunately we have become a nation that is great at destroying things but utterly clueless about how to build and nurture life.

  2. It seems to me that stopping the arms trade and cutting off the supply of weapons to the insurgents is a critical part of ending the conflict. Who is financing the arms? Who is manufacturing and selling them? These are the ones who need to be confronted.

  3. Offering several prayer resource links and a poster/banner idea as we gather to pray: “O God you are peace. From you is peace and unto you is peace. Let us live our lives in peace.
    – excerpt from Pax Christi USA Prayer for Unity in a Time of War by Kathy Kelly
    *MUSLIM, JEWISH, CHRISTIAN PRAYER FOR PEACE–Muslim-Jewish-Christian-Prayer-for-Peace-pack-of-100_p_67.html

  4. Intervention by western nations has caused nothing but problems for decades beginning with the artificial creation of the Iraq nation following WW I. The desire to control oil supplies from this region lie at the heart of much of the hardship our country and others have visited on the Iraqi people. A strong push for the creation of renewable energy is vital for making war for oil obsolete.

  5. Reblogged this on Grant Us Peace and commented:
    Prayers for peace are needed as well as a call for our elected officials to advocate for diplomatic solutions. Let your voice be heard! Let your representatives & our President know that we do not want more war & violence. And pray for peace.

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