Monday, March 31, 2003

Writer Russell Shaw offers his views at Catholic Exchange, explaining that disagreeing with the Pope here is not "dissent" and offering is own view of the action in the process:

Before explaining why, let me say for the record what my own position on the Iraq war was and is. It's reducible to three short statements.First, U.N. weapons inspections in Iraq had been resumed and seemed to be getting some results; it was premature, to say the least, to cut that process short by going to war at this time.Second, except in the most extraordinary circumstances, regime change is not an appropriate purpose of war.Third, creating a democratic Iraq by force is a will-o'-the-wisp that the United States has no business pursuing.But Novak, Weigel, Hudson and co. are, as Catholics, entitled to disagree on Iraq with me and, far more important, with Pope John Paul II. For those of us who line up on different sides of this issue — including, as far as I can see, the pope — are expressing prudential judgments rather than matters of moral principle and Catholic doctrine.