Home > Queensland Synod News > US Council of Churches says Bush troop increase plan is immoral

US Council of Churches says Bush troop increase plan is immoral

The US National Council of Churches, a long-standing critic of US military involvement in Iraq, has criticised President George W. Bush’s call for additional US troops to be sent to the region.  "Sending more troops is not a change in policy, nor is it even a change in strategy; it is more of the same," the NCC said in a statement about the president’s declaration that he wants to increase the number of US troops in Iraq by 21 500.

The church group in a 17 January statement described the call for more troops as "morally unsupportable".  There are currently about 130 000 US troops in Iraq.  "The surge as recommended by the president is immoral," the group asserted.  "What we do not need is an assertion of more military strength. What we need is the strength of basic moral conviction."

The declaration reiterated the NCC’s call for regional peace negotiations, including the resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.  Several heads of the NCC’s 35 member denominations supported the NCC call.  One of them, the Rev. John H. Thomas, general minister and president of the United Church of Christ, said US policy and its results in Iraq call for "profound lament and repentance, not for stubborn commitment to the unilateralism and militarism that has been the hallmark of our failed policy in Iraq".

The NCC members include Protestant, Anglican and Orthodox faith groups with 45 million adherents.

(c) Ecumenical News International