February 15, 2003
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Today the World Says, “Don’t Bomb Iraq!”

By John Dear

Today, in the name of peace, we say, "Don't bomb Iraq," and join our voices with over ten million people on six continents in over 600 cities who are marching for peace, singing for peace, praying for peace, demonstrating for peace, and demanding peace in the single largest day of protest in world history, an unprecedented, historic event, and we promise to keep on marching and speaking out against the U.S. war on Iraq as long as it takes!

Today, in the name of truth, we say, "Don't bomb Iraq," because bombing Iraq will not bring democracy; will not bring nuclear disarmament or peace to the Middle East; will not prevent terrorist attacks; will not help the international work of peacemaking or the U.N. inspections; will not feed the hungry or fund jobs, healthcare, education, housing, or environmental clean-up here or anywhere; will not uphold international law; and will not solve our problems. Bombing Iraq will only make the oil companies richer; sow the seeds of further terrorism; set a terrible precedent that it is permissible to bomb preemptively, and kill thousands of our own people and possibly hundreds of thousands of innocent people in Iraq.

Today, in the name of love for the children of Iraq, we say, "Don't bomb Iraq," because hundreds of thousands of Iraqi children have already died from our sanctions, because all the children of Iraq live in terror from our bombs, because they only want to live in peace with us, because they have the human right to life and peace, because they don't deserve to die so that the United States can be number one and hoard all the oil.

Today, in the name of disarmament, we say "Don't bomb Iraq," because if Mr. Bush, Mr. Cheney, and Mr. Powell are so committed to making sure no one has weapons of mass destruction, we must stop our hypocrisy and first dismantle our own nuclear arsenal, and dismantle our tens of thousands of weapons of mass destruction, beginning right here in New Mexico, by disarming Los Alamos, Sandia and Kirkland, and abolishing every one of our nuclear weapons, and then, we might be able to speak with integrity to the world about disarmament and inspire the other nations of the world to disarm.

Today, in the name of the God of peace, we say "Don't bomb Iraq," because war is not the will of God; war is never blessed by God; war is the ultimate mortal sin; war is never justified; war is immoral; war is demonic; war is evil; war is anti-human, anti-life and anti-God; war can never end terrorism because war is terrorism; war is not the way to serve humanity or deepen the spiritual life or find God. The God of peace calls us to repent of the sin of war, beat our swords into plowshares and live in peace with every human being on the planet. In particular, Christians are forbidden to support the war on Iraq, because the nonviolent Jesus orders us to "put down the sword" and "love our enemies," not bomb them.

Today, in the name of nonviolence, we say, "Don't bomb Iraq," because peaceful means are the only way to a peaceful future and the God of peace; because Martin Luther King, Jr., Dorothy Day and Mahatma Gandhi call us to create a new world without war or nuclear weapons; because the way to end terrorism is by ending the real axis of evil which is poverty, starvation, the degradation of the earth, the proliferation of weapons, and the existence of nuclear weapons; because we were created to be nonviolent with one another and every one on earth.

Dear friends, don't be discouraged. Don't despair. Don't be afraid. Don't give up. Keep on speaking out for peace. Keep on insisting on the truth of peace. Keep on praying to the God of peace. Keep on walking the road to peace. Thank you. God bless you.

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