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Letter to Prime Minister regarding "war on terror"
War on Terrorism
We are concerned about the "war on terrorism" rhetoric used by US President George Bush and other politicians, and recognize the destabilizing effects such language can have in times like these. This letter was sent to the Prime Minister's office on Friday, February 22, 2002, to express our concern about these antagonizing political expressions.
MC Canada Peace & Justice Ministries is encouraging all concerned persons to use this letter as template to communicate your concern to the Government of Canada at this time. Next week, a first-hand report from an MCC delegation to Iraq will be posted, with further recommendations for expressions of concern.
The letter was sent under the auspices of Mennonite Church Canada's Peace & Justice Office, and in partnership with Mennonite Central Committee, Project Ploughshares, and Kairos (an ecumenical peace and justice agency and partner of Mennonite Church Canada)
February 21, 2002
The Right Honourable Jean Chrétien,
Dear Mr. Chrétien,
We are writing with regard to the Iraq situation on behalf of KAIROS: Canadian Ecumenical Justice Initiatives and Project Ploughshares. KAIROS is a coalition of Canadian churches that works on a broad range of peace and justice issues including those relating to Iraq, and Project Ploughshares is a peace and disarmament organization.
We are greatly troubled by the possibility of a US led attack on Iraq. We urge
you to make every possible effort to dissuade the US from such a course. Our primary
concern is humanitarian. The people of Iraq have suffered enormously over the
last twenty years in the Iran-Iraq war which continued for most of the 1980s;
in the Gulf War of 1991 and the suppression immediately thereafter; and in the
twelve years of sanctions which have prevented the rehabilitation of
We do not defend the government of Iraq but we do not believe that a military attack will solve the problems. Canadian church groups have appeared before the Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Trade (SCFAIT), and met with Foreign Affairs officials. We have argued for a different approach, one that would end the economic sanctions and take a more regional approach to the issue of disarmament and other matters. The Standing Committee's report, released on April 12, 2000, called for steps in this direction. We urge your government to pursue the recommendations of the report. We believe it holds much promise for the Iraqi people and for the cause of justice and peace in the region.
cc: Honourable John Manley, Deputy Prime Minister