Wrong to disagree with Pope on Just War in Iraq?


I was wondering if it is wrong to disagree with a Pope on Just War in Iraq? We aren’t bound to his teaching on a war absolutely being JUST as it isn’t a moral doctrine we have to agree with like a dogma, even if he is the Pope right and he may be right, correct?

I think I am changing my position in saying that it was good to remove Saddam, but the war wasn’t just. Prior, I was just thinking it was good to remove Saddam for the things he had done. This being apart of the USA being partakers in an unjust war, whether or not it was weapons of mass destruction or oil.

I keep hearing how “evil” America was for fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan and Pakistan. Even Americans say this in online articles, but mainly Muslims say this. I read the Popes didn’t agree with the war in iraq, not sure what they thought about the others wars or just trying to get rid of Saddam Husein much light Osama Bin Laden, if either of those were JUST WARS or justified.

Thank you for your thoughts!
God Bless you!



One of twelve reasons… E.g. - “Saddam Hussein (1937–2006), Iraqi President, responsible for many torturings, killings and of ordering the 1988 cleansing of Kurds in Northern Iraq.”

Recent popes never endorse any war and always pray for peace. The Church has not spoken authoritatively on the invasion of Afghanistan or the 2003 invasion of Iraq. Certainly the Church is in sympathy with the struggle against Islamist terrorism but there are, of course, many opinions on the proper tactics of that effort.

No, it is not necessarily wrong. There are plenty of Catholics in good standing who will defend the Iraq war. The Church has not pronounced authoritatively on that particular conflict, and it probably never will. (Contrast this with, say, Nazism or Communism, where there are official Church documents condemning the position.)

Not sure what kind of contrast you mean. On one hand you have a specific war (in Iraq). On the other hand you have two systems of government. Of course they are different. They are not same kind of thing. A more comparable contrast would be to World War II, or the wars in Korea and Vietnam, which were the responses to Naziism and Communism. And I don’t think there are official documents on those wars either.

I think we’re saying the same thing in different ways (comes of typing when sleepy, duh.) :smiley:

As you said, the Church is unlikely to officially pronounce on a particular conflict; they are more likely to produce documents that address a particular ideology (say, socialism) or a particular issue (say, nuclear proliferation).

On this particular issue, I have seen some Catholic commentators argue on the justice of the Iraq war, but there are good points made by both sides. :slight_smile:

Are you all saying not official Church documents, like dogma OR a doctrine or an encyclical? I am not how much each of those are binding to our faith and morals. It seems the Popes have at least commented, and if I don’t agree with their comment, is it a sin?

“In 1991, Pope John Paul II opposed the Gulf War and publicly appealed to U.S. President George H.W. Bush not to wage it. In 2003, he once again opposed a war in Iraq and appealed to U.S. President George W. Bush to refrain from going to war.”

"Cardinal Ratzinger also argued that “reasons sufficient for unleashing a war against Iraq did not exist,” in part because:

"proportion between the possible positive consequences and the sure negative effect of the conflict was not guaranteed. On the contrary, it seems clear that the negative consequences will be greater than anything positive that might be obtained.""

I saw that same sex parents cannot morally adopt children. It seems this is in a Vatican document, so it makes it immoral? Or does a dogma need to be defined to say that God says it is immoral?

This seems similar to my question about what makes a Just War or not, as to what the Pope says personally, or writes in some sort of dogmatic, doctrinal, or encyclical document.

Thank you for helping me to understand.

Perhaps the most notorious example of a state forcing its view on a church agency comes from Massachusetts, where Boston Catholic Charities ran an adoption agency that had been placing children with families for over 100 years. In 2006, Archbishop Sean P. O’Malley announced that the agency would abandon its founding mission rather than submit to a state law requiring it to place children with homosexual couples. (A Vatican document from 2003 described gay adoptions as ''gravely immoral.")

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