June 19, 2006

i don't support the war in iraq

This morning, driving to work, I listened to a story of a man visiting a Vietnamese orphanage recently. He looked on rows and rows of beds with children with terrible deformities. The majority of these children would not have been this way if it were not for the fact when their parents were children they were exposed to chemicals used during the Vietnam war. War sucks... it is terrible. As I think about those children, lying in cots a world away deformed by someone else's sin... and think of my own... I am forced to wonder what stories my children may hear as adults from Iraqis that grew up through this war. What will we give to stop this? What will it take? Do we care enough for the generations that will come after our own to stop this nonsense? ... I'm very tired of war this morning.

Some quotes to let sink in today:
In times of war, our leaders always speak of their prayers. They wish us to know that they say prayers because they wish us to believe that they are deeply worried and that they take their responsibilities seriously. Perhaps they believe or hope that prayer will help. But within the circumstances of war, prayer becomes a word as befuddled in meaning as liberate or order or victory or peace. These prayers are usually understood to be Christian prayers. But Christian prayers are made to or in the name of Jesus, who loved, prayed for, and forgave his enemies and who instructed his followers to do likewise.

A Christian supplicant, therefore, who has resolved to kill those whom he is enjoined to love, to bless, to do good to, to pray for, and to forgive as he hopes to be forgiven is not conceivably in a situation in which he can be at peace with himself. Anyone who has tried to apply this doctrine to a merely personal enmity will be aware of the enormous anguish that it could cause a national leader in wartime. No wonder that national leaders have ignored it for nearly two thousand years.
-Wendell Berry

'Of course, let us have peace,' we cry, 'but at the same time let us have normalcy, let us lose nothing, let our lives stand intact, let us know neither prison nor ill repute nor disruption of ties....' There is no peace because there are no peacemakers. There are no makers of peace because the making of peace is at least as costly as the making of war ??? at least as exigent, at least as disruptive, at least as liable to bring disgrace and prison and death in its wake.
-Daniel Berrigan

Father, forgive us. For we know all too well what we do (or at least what others do in our name) and have not the spine to do anything about it.

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