What was that saying that Bush totally bungled? “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me”. Well, it’s going to be tested. We’ve seen the start of it already. And one of the sources for this story is a Republican who calls this attempt to start a war with Iran “Lunacy”.
If there were a threat level on the possibility of war with Iran, it might have just gone up to orange. Barnett Rubin, the highly respected Afghanistan expert at New York University, has written an account of a conversation with a friend who has connections to someone at a neoconservative institution in Washington. Rubin canâ€™t confirm his friendâ€™s story; neither can I. But itâ€™s worth a heads-up
Interesting Times: George Packer: Online Only: The New Yorker
Now is the time, it appears, for the church to stand up and say , in effect, “don’t even think about it”.
An addendum to the previous reply: If somebdoy like Seymour Hersh can write warnings about the activity inside ther Bush administration to stir up war talk with Iran and lay groundwork for attacks and such (and his articles certainly have that tone and intent of warning), then how much more is such needed from the perspective of a church that comes at such matters from farmore than just “practical”, strategic terms, but from , as you pointed out “War is a violation of God”™s law”, and that, as war after war supposedly intended to “achive peace” does, war simply continues to form us in the wrong fashion.
I was posting there what was really two different messages. One was for general consumption (ie “Don’t get fooled again”) and the other on hoping the church starts early on warnings about the direction we’re being taken AGAIN. I didn’t mean to imply that the churches were primarily the ones being fooled the first time around (although there were and still are many who remain duped because of their leadership’s underwriting of the American Empire).
I just hope there is some harsher warnings given by church leaders about the rhetoric and “ratcheting up” of “provocation” to underwrite and justify a fear based response, prior to any official asking for approval from Congress, so that there is no longer any way to assume that even the formerly cheerleading evangelical churches can be counted upon for support, and to light a fire under the behinds of the Democratic leadership to make clear to the White House their own version of “don’t even think about it”.
THese Iran stories have been happening for a while now, and I haven’t seen much of anything coming from any of our church leaders on this that would signal to the public that church people are concerned about this. That’s my concern. When the stealth PR campaigns begin, we need more resources at hand and active to combat the combined forces of media and government , and it’s important to nip it ithe bud as far as possible in advance. At least that’s my take.
As I recall, retired United Methodist Bishop Mel Talbert was a vocal speaker against the Iraq war before it began. For this, he was criticized and his role was challenged but he spoke never the less. Perhaps there were others, but Bishop Talbert was the most visible. He spoke from a theological foundation. He said, and I’m not quoting him word-for-word here, “War is a violation of God’s law.”
The church has alternatives to war–alleviating poverty, talking to your enemies to name just two–that often get characterized as either disloyal or naive. But at the cost of life and treasure, the naivete in the Iraq war seems to be on the part of those who thought it would be a cakewalk. Neither will Iran.