STATEMENT ON IRAQ

By the Executive Committee of the

Women’s Division, General Board of Global Ministries

The United Methodist Church

 

 “We believe war is incompatible with the teachings and example of Christ.  We therefore reject war as a usual instrument of national foreign policy and insist that the first moral duty of all nations is to resolve by peaceful means every dispute that arises between or among them;  that human values must outweigh military claims as governments determine their priorities;  militarization of society must be challenged and stopped;  that the manufacture, sale, and deployment of armaments must be reduced and controlled; and that the production, possession, or use of nuclear weapons be condemned.  Consequently, we endorse general and complete disarmament under strict and effective international control.”  Social Principles of the United Methodist Church

                The Book of Discipline of the United Methodist Church, 2000

 

The General Conference of the United Methodist Church meeting in May, 2000, approved a resolution entitled “Sanctions Against Iraq Should be Lifted” which emphasized that “the magnitude of the effects of the sanctions has created a humanitarian crisis and the continuation of the sanctions as the moral equivalent to waging war against a civilian population”. The resolution urged the government of the USA “…to support the lifting of economic sanctions on Iraq by the Security Council….” and at the same time to work for the furtherance of  “…making the entire Middle East a zone free of nuclear, biological and chemical weapons.”

 

In October, 2001, the Women’s Division voted to “Urge the President to press for peace in the Middle East, including security for the state of Israel and justice and sovereignty for the Palestine people.”

 

The Executive Committee of the Women’s Division re-affirms its opposition to war as the instrument for resolving the continuing conflict with Iraq, presses for lifting the sanctions against Iraq and urges all governments, most particularly the USA, and the Security Council of the United Nations to pursue peaceful means in resolving conflicts with Iraq.

 

“Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.”  Matthew 5:9