RE: Is the Hubbert curve a factor in the Bush Administrations rush to war with Iraq? (fwd)

From: Joel Cannon (
Date: Sat Feb 22 2003 - 18:30:53 EST

  • Next message: Joel Cannon: "RE: Is the Hubbert curve a factor in the Bush Administrations rush to war with Iraq? (fwd)"

    Responding to Glenn:

    As always, I appreciate his statistics and his ability to access and
    produce data quickly. It advances the discussion. I agree with a
    number of things he says, but I think his criticisms involve some
    questionable assumptions and they ignored some of the more important
    points that I made. I will deal with those in my next post. But first
    I would like to discuss a broader and more central issue which his
    response introduced.

    Glenn and others are correct in guessing that my discomfort as a
    Christian with the invasion of Iraq is broader than the question of
    whether oil is a (or the) principal motivating factor. I confined my
    discussion to the relevance of oil and the Hubbert curve because that
    (as a scientific issue that had previously been discussed here) was
    the issue that was relevant to the list (Glenn provided insight
    potentially relevant to the war). I did this in the context of just
    war theory because no matter how questionable its application over the
    years, this seems to be the most broadly accepted and
    least restrictive Christian thinking with regard to pursuing violence
    in defense of justice.

    I think Glenn's response contradicts just war theory (at least all
    Christian just war theory I have heard propounded) and invites the
    question as to whether Jesus has any relevance to war. Central
    features of just war theory as I understand it are: 1. that the ``just
    cause'' involves a response to aggression (including imminent
    aggression); and 2) all available alternatives have been exhausted.

    Glenn's reasons for going to war are that he thinks ``it is about an
    up and coming dictator who might get the bomb....If Saddam gets the
    bomb, he wins the entire Middle East as a vassal state stretching from
    Pakistan to the Strait of Gibralter, having the bomb and looking to
    topple the West?''

    Glenn acknowledges that invasion of Iraq has no significant connection
    with the war on terrorism, nor with human rights violations. His
    scenario goes far beyond the scariest scenario that I have heard from
    Bush administration members, who are not known for rhetorical
    caution. However, these questions pale before the question of what is
    justifiable from the standpoint of being faithful to Jesus.

    Glenn's reason is not that war is a response to aggression or imminent
    aggression. It is not a pre-emptive strike but a preventative war
    based on conjecture. Simply stated, Glenn seems to believe the
    U.S. is justified in going to war on the basis of what another country
    might (the word Glenn used) possibly be able to do at some future
    date. Isn't it ironic that the countries we would be altruistically
    helping in this scenario, such as Saudia Arabia, Pakistan, Jordon,
    Turkey, and Egypt are more worried about us helping them and are
    opposed to the war?

    While I respect Glenn's abilities, and have benefited from his
    insights, I do have to wonder what allows him to predict with such
    precision the psychology and the political and military capabilities
    of Saddam Hussein and why he is willing to act on this psychoanalysis
    when acting has such deadly consequences. Is such speculation
    sufficient warrant for the many civilian casualties that will result
    from a war on Iraq within any moral framework? I think not.


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