Pope Francis

Pope Backs Force to Stop Militants in Iraq

So much for that precedent of non-violence.


Pope Francis on Monday endorsed military action to stop Islamist militants from attacking religious minorities in Iraq, a pronouncement that goes against a century of papal guidance against the use of force.

Francis cautioned that no country should act alone, and he called for an agreement within the international community, possibly through the United Nations, before embarking on a military campaign. He also warned against an all-out war, insisting that force could be justified only to "stop" the Islamic State, Muslim extremists who have forced Iraqi Christians and members of the Yazidi sect to convert to Islam. Those who refused have fled, and some have been executed by the militants.

James Bretzke, a priest and professor of moral theology at Boston College, said popes in recent history have all lined up against any military intervention, including World War I, World War II, the Vietnam War and, most recently, the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003.


NEXT: Video: Locked Out: A Hair Braider Fights Occupational Licensing

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. It’s seems he has particular ideas about how this war should be fought. He should send his own army.

    1. He has the freedom to call on Christendom to go and fight.

  2. Until Christians do what Muslims are willing to do – go to other countries and fight, send money and arms, the Muslims will win.

    1. Any Christians who agree are free to join the resistance effort — with their own lives and money. Waging war with other people’s lives and money should not be an option in a totally elective, non-defensive war.

      1. Of course, what would be more helpful to these people who are suffering under ISIS repression would be to allow them to immigrate to countries where their religious choices would be more respected. It also has the benefit of being a cheaper and less-forceful solution to the problem (read, less future jihadists).

        In the end, any bass-ackwards islamic-fundamentalist state would be poor and pathetic anyway. It likely wouldn’t have many inhabitants, and it would lack the resources to seriously threaten any semi-developed country, and it would likely collapse within a generation.

  3. Heed the call Eddie.

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.