The incivility of war is useless slaughter

humans attached to wars

Pope Francis met with leaders of the Congregation for Eastern Catholic churches, many from countries dealing with conflict, saying human beings seem to be “champion in making war,” which should “make us all ashamed”

Francis said it is tragic that humans seem to be “attached to wars”.

“Humanity still seems to be groping in the dark,” the pope said.

“We have witnessed the massacres of the conflicts in the Middle East, in Syria and Iraq, and those in the Ethiopian region of Tigray. Threatening winds are still blowing in the steppes of Eastern Europe, lighting the fuses and blasts of weapons and leaving the hearts of the poor and the innocent freezing”.

At the same time, he said, “the drama of Lebanon continues, leaving many people without bread; young people and adults have lost hope and are leaving those lands”.

Pope Francis noted that the Congregation for Eastern Churches was established by Pope Benedict XV, who died 100 years ago. “He denounced the incivility of war as a ‘useless slaughter'”. But “his warning went unheeded by the leaders of the nations involved in the First World War. Just as St John Paul II’s appeal to avert the conflict in Iraq went unheeded.

“At this moment, when there are so many wars everywhere, this appeal both of the popes and of men and women of goodwill is unheard”, he said.

“It seems that the greatest prize for peace should be given to wars: a contradiction!”, he added.

Francis’ comments come against a background of a massive Russian build-up of forces on the border with Ukraine. British PM Boris Johnson says Russia is planning ‘the biggest war in Europe since 1945’.

“I’m afraid to say that the plan we are seeing is for something that could be really the biggest war in Europe since 1945, just in terms of sheer scale”, Johnson told the BBC.

“People need to understand the sheer cost in human life that could entail,” he said.

Meanwhile, reports have come through that French President Emmanuel Macron and Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin agreed in a call on the need to find a diplomatic solution to the Ukraine crisis, Macron’s office said on Sunday.

The two countries foreign ministers will meet in the coming days to that effect and will work on a possible summit at the highest level with Russia, Ukraine and allies to establish a new security order in Europe, the Élysée palace said.


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