- What is the purpose of having rules and regulations when
we can disregard them at will at any moment we like? Since the early days
of human existence, those that transgressed rules and regulations to the
detriment of others always tended to be punished, sooner or later. In order
for us to understand the seriousness of such violations, we need to understand
properly the significance of laws. In order to do that, we must have a
clear concept of the four hierarchical laws of which ascetical writers
spoke over the past several centuries.
- Four Hierarchical Laws
Thomas Aquinas, who has been viewed as a genius by many, talks with great
clarity on the four hierarchical laws consisting of (1) the divine law,
(2) the natural law, (3) the ecclesiastical law, and (4) the civic law.
They are viewed as hierarchical because in the event we do have a clash
between them, then the one that is higher should be observed while the
other that is lower should be disregarded. Before we illustrate this by
examples, we need to form a clear concept of each of such laws. Afterwards,
we may proceed to learn about their relationship as to enable us to create
a harmonious world community. Let us put each one of them into proper focus:
- 1. The Divine Law, which is commonly known as the Divine
Positive Law, consists of the Ten Commandments, which are found in virtually
every religion by different names. In the Holy Scriptures we read that
these were the laws that God gave to Moses. Hence, they are perennial in
the sense that they are always applicable century after century till the
end of time. Such laws supersede all other laws in the sense that they
cannot be disregarded for any reason.
- 2. The Natural Law, which consists of the unique
order that God set up in the entire universe from the first moment of creation.
This is revealed in the law of gravity, where everything that
is heavier than air tends to go down; in the law of plant life that
makes the root of trees develop below the soil surface while the tree itself
grows above the soil surface; and the law of conceptionthat will inevitably
result into the birth of the creature involved, in addition to other laws.
- 3. The Ecclesiastical Law, which consists in the
enactment of rules and regulations made by spiritual leaders of any church
or religion. Such enacted laws are expected to enable the adherents to
observe better and more effectively the first two laws mentioned above.
If, for one reason or another, laws are enacted that go contrary to the
positive law and/or the natural law, then such laws ought to be disregarded
by all means.
- 4. The Civic Law, which is man-made law that could
change from time to time. No government, no political leader, no court,
no authoritative source of any kind can enact and implement laws that go
against any of the above three laws. That would include the ecclesiastical
provided no laws are enacted that go against the first two laws that were
mentioned. Hence, people are obligated to disregard any law enacted by
any government that does not respect higher laws.
- We are now in a position to make a value judgment about
anything that goes on in our earthly community. For such a judgment to
be valid it must be objective and not subjective. It is objective when
we view a human action the way God sees it, that is, without any deception
whatsoever. On the other hand, a judgment may be viewed as subjective if
it is merely based on our interpretation or opinion, if it contradicts
or goes against the other three laws in particular the first two. Let us
now analyze carefully the Iraqi war.
- Such a war cannot be judged as right or wrong by what
politicians choose to tell us or by the rationale that is given by the
weapons industry and the military industrial complex. Unfortunately, experience
has demonstrated that many have become rich by turning the manufacture
and sales of weapons, along with the promotion of struggles and wars, into
a big lucrative business. In other words, such sources have developed the
habit of making millions of dollars through the infliction of so much pain
- This may be viewed as blood money that is cursed. The
American war against Iraq was waged in violation of the Geneva Convention,
since Iraq was not a threat to the security of the United States. The reasons
given for the invasion of Iraq, which included the having weapons of mass
destruction, were proven to be entirely unfounded and false.
- Besides, some of the leading statesmen of the world like
Nelson Mandela and Desmond Tutu of South Africa, the Dalai Lama, Oscar
Arias of Costa Rica and Pope John Paul II, in addition to others, warned
the United States that such an invasion would be a grave mistake. The Pope
even pointed out that such an invasion would create animosity between Christians
and Moslems and that it would instigate more terrorism as to become totally
out of control.
- What did the war in Iraq achieve over the past five years?
Before we prove the illegality and immorality of such a senseless war we
need to enlist some of the eventual achievements of this abusive, cruel
and disastrous war. Without a clear concept of these "achievements"
we are not in a position to make a value judgment of such a war. This list
is not structured in any specific order.
- 1. Destruction of the infrastructure of a nation: Thousands
of houses and several hospitals, schools, and businesses were destroyed.
People became homeless having lost all of their belongings. They could
no longer have a place where they could preserve their food. Hunger and
disease spread which led to the death of many.
- 2. Massacre of over one million innocent Iraqis: In
the process of conquering Iraq, supposedly to liberate it from terrorists,
Americans killed mercilessly almost over one million innocent people consisting
mostly of women, children the elderly and the sick. In addition, tens of
thousands were maimed with legs or arms amputated.
- 3. Creation of tens of thousands of orphans: Many
children had one or both of their parents killed. They will have to live
now for the rest of their life with a trauma that will always be felt to
be unbearable. As a result, these children have lost their real happiness
and joy of life. Many are bound to spend the rest of their life in a state
of depression as a consequence.
- 4. Increase in the number of deaths of children: Due
to luck of food and medicine, the number of children dying in Iraq is literally
frightening. According to UNICEF, 20% of Iraqi children are dying of starvation
every year. What a nice legacy the United States has given to these Iraqi
children! Tens of thousands of them have not gone to school since the American
invasion in March 2003.
- 5. Making thousands of families to be homeless: Some
US officials refer to the Iraqi war as the "war of liberation."
It is truly a war of liberation because Americans did succeed to liberate
the Iraqis from their homes and now they are homeless; to liberate Iraqis
from their markets and now they find it difficult to get food; to liberate
Iraqis from their beloved ones and now they live in pain.
- 6. Maiming numerous civilians with arms or legs amputated: It
is very sad to see now many Iraqis deformed for life. Many international
reporters tell us that, in just four years under American domination, the
Iraqis have suffered infinitely more than under the 30 years rule by Saddam
Hussein, who was condemned to death just for being responsible for the
death of 146 people.
- 7. Disruption in the education of children at all levels: A
nation is as good and bad as its people in terms of education, culture,
and religious practices. We are now setting up an Iraqi nation consisting
of a generation that is being limited in its educational endeavors. This
Iraqi war instilled in many the deprivation of a will to live, which explains
the story of the so called suicide bombers.
- 8. Creating a great shortage of food: For about
ten years prior to the Iraqi invasion, the United States put sanctions
on Iraq that made it difficult for this nation to secure the vital needs
of the people. Because of that every year 10% of the children died of starvation,
as reported by UNICEF. Now, the food shortage has even increased and the
country is suffering immensely.
- 9. Instigation of hatred and revenge against Americans: The
Iraqi people, as a whole, attribute all the mess that is going on in Iraq
to the presence of US troops. Teenagers were asked by humanitarian organizations
what did they think was the source of all their problems. They all said: "The
presence of Americans. We want them all to leave Iraq. We want them just
to leave us alone."
- 10. Exploitation of Iraq's natural resources: Some
political analysts tell us that the United States, in invading Iraq, had
ulterior motives, which consisted in the confiscation of oil. As a capitalist
nation, the United States is run by big corporations, which control not
only the economy of the entire nation but also the entire US government.
- In other words, the United States is ruled by the Corporate
Trinity of Evil, consisting of the weapons industry, the construction
companies and the oil enterprises. They work hand in hand. The weapons
industry destroys the infrastructure of a nation; then the construction
companies go there to rebuild the nation while the oil enterprises step
in to control the natural resources.
- 11. Imposition of a notorious, cruel and heartless dictatorship: The
feeling among the vast majority of the people in Iraq is this. The Iraqis
were much better before the American invasion than after. And they explain
why. Before the American invasion, the Iraqis had their own homes. The
spouses enjoyed each other and they loved seeing their children growing
- Parents were happy to see their beloved children playing
and enjoying themselves. Now, those that manage to be still alive are mourning
deeply the loss of so many of their family members, relatives and friends.
They feel sad and many do feel that they have nothing to live for now,
that their life has been fully ruined. Many feel so upset and angry at
the Americans who killed their beloved ones they feel their only goal in
life is to kill as many Americans as they can.
- Needless to say, every Iraqi that tries to avenge the
death of his dear family members, relatives and friends is quickly labeled
by the US government as Al-Qaeda, even though such Iraqis may dislike the
Al-Qaeda in no lesser way than they dislike the American soldiers. The
saintly Pope John Paul II had warned the United States that the invasion
of Iraq would create great animosity and that it would turn the region
into a ground of terrorism that would go out of control. We are witnessing
today the execution of the Pope's prophetic warning.
- 12. Destruction of the rich heritage of an old civilization: Iraq
is not just another country. It is a unique country that could be viewed
as a sacred ground for Jews, Christians and Moslems since most events related
in the Bible took place there. In just five years, this needless and atrocious
war has destroyed what has been built over a period of some three thousand
- 13. Endangering unnecessarily the lives of young Americans: Over
4,000 Americans were killed, not counting those that committed suicide.
Besides, more than 30,000 were wounded with arms or legs amputated and
quite a few with disfigured faces for life. These young Americans did not
choose to go to war. If they had a choice, the vast majority would have
opted for sure not to go.
- Besides, because of this war, many young American soldiers
had their marriage broken ending up in a divorce. Once these young Americans
are sent to fight, to destroy the infrastructure of a nation, and to kill
"anything that moves," as they are often told, their life, quite
often, deteriorates psychologically. We need to keep in mind that, for
all practical purposes, the life of American soldiers is sacred in no lesser
way than that of the Iraqis. After all they are all children of the same
need to bring to our attention here the words of former US President Dwight
Eisenhower in his farewell speech to the US Congress. He said: "Remember
that every dollar you spend on weapons and war is a theft from the hungry
and the poor." This World War II US General knew very well that every
war is barbaric, that in a war everyone is a loser and no one a winner.
He also warned about the weapons industrial complex that for profit the
lethal product of this industry may go completely out of control. This
would be a great catastrophe for it would hasten the road to Armageddon.
this send, the time is ripe to start viewing as criminals all those who
have turned the manufacture and the indiscriminate sales of weapons, along
with the waging of wars into a lucrative business. Countless millions of
dollars are being made through the infliction of merciless killing of tens
of thousands of innocent people amounting to millions on a global scale.
amazes every sensible person in the world lies in the fact that hardly
any news media reporter ever tries to investigate the kind of money those
government officials that promote wars might be making behind the curtain.
People need an explanation of how most government officials initially have
enough money to make ends meet and then, all of a sudden, they become millionaires.
Scholars of political science have concluded that such excessive money
made by politicians comes from weapons and wars.
- War as Betrayal of People
US President Dwight Eisenhower were alive today he would have probably
referred to government officials who continue to pour billions of dollars
on the manufacture of more weapons and the promotion of more wars as "traitors"
who, like Judas Iscariot, continue to betray innocent people and sending
them prematurely to their grave. They will never reveal their real intent.
On the contrary, they try to cover their intent very carefully by referring
to anything negative and destructive they do through the usage such phraseology
as "safeguard of American interests" and as "national defense
get back to where we started, every crime that takes place in the world
constitutes a violation of one or more laws, especially against the divine
positive law and the natural law, since both of such laws are God-made
laws. This means that they can never be modified or changed till the end
of time. Among such laws we find that we should not kill anyone under no
circumstance whatsoever, that we should not lie to people when we talk
to them, that we should not destroy or confiscate the property of others,
and that we should love others with respect same as ourselves. All of these
laws fall within the divine positive law.
we are obligated to protect the environment from air and water pollution.
Moreover, all people are entitled to free health care and education and
to have adequate home facilities. All of these constitute a part of the
natural law. If the billions of dollars that the US government has spent
on the Iraqi war were spent on the needy, today millions of people sleeping
in the streets like strayed animals would have had a home. All the hungry
in the world would have had food and all the poor would have had available
all kinds of medication.
of what we may hear to the contrary, the military by its very nature exists
to promote violence revealed in the destruction of the infrastructure of
cities and the merciless killing of countless innocent people that would
include women, children, the elderly and the sick. We all know that violence
breeds violence and more violence breeds more violence. This is thoroughly
vindicated by the quagmire Iraq is in because of a war that should have
never taken place.