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Pope Francis supports intervention to stop ISIS….. August 18, 2014

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, disconcerting, Ecumenism, episcopate, General Catholic, Glory, Holy suffering, martyrdom, Papa, persecution, sadness, scandals, sickness, Society, Spiritual Warfare.

…….but believes any such intervention should proceed through the UN, which……..Ah pbmit mah ton owff

I would just say the United Nations, as a venue for achieving conflict resolution, has, over its 7 decade history, shown itself to be amazingly ineffective and generally ordered to just accepting whatever the new status quo is after some people gets devastated by another.  They are then happy to sit down with the victors and perhaps admit them to the Security Council within a few years.

I exaggerate, but not much.

So make what you will of that, but in spite of some in the press saying Pope Francis strongly endorsed military intervention, and others saying he “punted,” here is what he actually said:


The first paragraph is good, helpful Catholic just war theory.  It’s wonderful to stop an unjust aggression without using force, but often that is simply not possible. The kinds of groups/nations/whatever that would resort to an unjust aggression are not the kind that tend to listen to verbal reason. They only know one language, force.  The United States could fit into that category in many minds.

Second paragraph, perhaps, but I don’t think there have been too many colonial wars of conquest in the past century or so, at least with first world powers as the aggressors.  I think appealing to the US invasion of Iraq in 20033 as a war of conquest would be a pretty far reach, but I have no clear idea if that is what is being referred to.

Para 3 is a bit muddled and seems more like personal opinion – one could even interpret from the language that the nation or group suffering  unjust attack must wait a judgment from the UN that such attack is indeed unjust before responding!  There is nothing in Catholic just war doctrine that a nation under attack must achieve some kind of balance of world opinion or a majority vote declaring the depredations being committed against it unjust.  In the time it can take to achieve such a consensus many nations have been wiped out, so I find this more than just slightly strange.  But it is very consistent with a progressive world view.  I would agree the arguments seem directed against the US acting alone, but, once again, history has shown that by the time one can get the bloated, almost inevitably corrupt UN to act, it is very often far too late to do anything but evacuate the few survivors and pick up bodies from the rubble.

This is another transcript of a famous airplane interview, so who knows.  I think it important to note this is not a doctrinal document.  I’ll admit to being torn on this matter of US intervention, I am scandalized and sorrowful by the ongoing atrocities in the Mideast against Christians (and others) and want it to end now, and I know there is not really another nation that can do any intervening with the level of effect the US can achieve, even alone, but I am pretty reticent to see another Mideast conflict involving the US, especially with the current leadership.  I do not have much confidence any real long term results can be achieved; at most, I can see perhaps a temporary reduction if not elimination of the suffering.

I do get the sense from the statement above, with the usual caveats for “translation errors” and all that, that Pope Francis is torn himself.  There is reality, and then there is the great ecumenical/interreligious project, and the two don’t always align very nicely.

Nevertheless, I pray these words hearten the suffering Iraqi and Syrian Catholics and encourage them to resist this horrific onslaught with whatever means they can find, and with whatever help is given them.  I pray this ISIS nightmare be utterly crushed and returned to the pit from whence it came.




1. Steve - August 18, 2014

I would say that Pope Francis’ comments in question are akin to the support that Pope Venerable Pius XII had offered to the United Nations.

I also believe that Pope Francis has followed the path that Pope Venerable Pius XII had established in regard to Catholic principles relative to modern warfare.

Pope Venerable Pius XII’s support for the United Nations led to Vatican II’s teachings that the establishment of a universal public authority is required if mankind wishes to avoid wars.

Such a “universal public authority” recognized by all would safeguard international peace and human rights while preventing the need to resort for war.

Pope Francis has followed the lead of Pope Venerable Pius XII in having called for an international effort to address an unjust act of aggression (namely, IS’ attacks against innocent Iraqis).

Tantumblogo - August 18, 2014

I think in the 1940s or 50s one could reasonably have some hope in the UN. I think that hope is misplaced now, or dubious at best.

I’m all for an international effort, the only problem being, most Christian nations are too weak or self-obsessed to do so.

However, I read today that Iran is going to occupy large parts of Iraq to “defend” a Shiite population that has faced little threat from ISIS to date. That may not be a temporary occupation, we may be seeing the early stages of the partition of Iraq.

2. Baseballmom - August 19, 2014

How does one “stop” the aggressor without warfare? Just wondering…

Tantumblogo - August 19, 2014

Asking very nice.

Baseballmom - August 19, 2014

Please???? Pleeeeeeeaze!,,, STOP IT NOW! Pretty please with a cherry on top????? Let’s dialogue!

Elizabeth - August 19, 2014

Bingo. D-I-A-L-O-G!!!

discipleofthedumbox - August 19, 2014

Do you want to put a stop to something? How about we first stop insisting that we have run out of options (or how about we ask first if we, that is our federal leviathan, is even qualified to ask the question?) and now must resort to violence?

3. Steve - August 19, 2014

I believe that the only human hope for Catholics persecuted, for example, in Iraq (and, I am certain, coming persecutions of Catholics throughout the word) exists in militaries maintained by strong Catholic nations.

That is, nations populated overwhelmingly by Catholics.

I don’t expect the United Nations (in effect, the “world”) to protect Catholics in Iraq.

The UN couldn’t care less about persecuted Catholics.

I would not expect the United Nations to respond to future persecutions of Catholics.

Catholics are on their own.

Frankly, the Church militant is in desperate need of volunteer Crusader militaries to defend Her children.

That, of course, is a pipe-dream in light of the “New Orientation”.

Our Churchmen’s obsession with politically-correct ecumenical and interreligious “dialogue” have rendered impossible the existence of Catholic armies, navies and air forces brimming with holy Catholic men to employ just means to defend Holy Mother Children and Her children.

Holy Mother Church’s enemies are aware that they can overrun Catholics at will.

At any rate, at least in regard to the West, strong Catholic nations cannot exist without the strong presence of the Traditional Roman Mass and Holy Tradition.

However, the “New Orientation” is committed to the Novus Ordo and that is that.

4. Molly Alley - August 19, 2014

“After WW2 the idea of the United Nations came about.” Why does everyone always forget about the League of Nations? Just because it failed doesn’t mean you can say no one ever had the idea before.

That being said, it would be more effective if the pope called on Jordon, and thus Arab League, not to use their seat on the security council to Veto his call or ISIS to “Stop”.

5. discipleofthedumbox - August 19, 2014

The pope recognizes the failure of our, that is the Union of States, application of bombs and firearms to meet the demands of criteria number one of Augustine’s/Aquinas’ jus ad bellum, cf. Just Authority.

In other words, ‘who the hell do we think we are?’

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