Church leaders urge Bush to quit Iraq
The leaders of several churches in the US have urged the United States to leave Iraq as soon as possible.
They were part of an inter-faith gathering in Chicago this week made up of
about 100 Christians, Muslims and Jews from across America.
The gathering also urged America not to isolate itself by conducting unilateral military actions against other nations.
In a signed statement they said that America should give control of the reconstruction work in Iraq to the international community.
"Drawing on all of our traditions, which are rooted in justice, compassion and peace, we say to the present leadership of the United States: Draw back from the use of threat of first strike war," the statement said.
"Draw back from the unilateral US control over the reconstruction of Iraq," they wrote. "Bring the US occupation of Iraq to a prompt end by transferring to the United Nations and multilateral, nongovernmental organizations the authority to work with the Iraqi people on its own reconstruction."
"Make available US resources as part of a world effort to serve the needs and decisions of the Iraqi people."
Rev. Bob Edgar, general secretary of the National Council of Churches USA, which convened the two-day Interfaith Summit on Iraq, warned against post-war jubilation once victory is declared.
"I think the euphoria of winning the war is misplaced. There's never been an issue of whether we were going to win the war of not," said Edgar, a former six-term Democratic congressman.