I respect your viewpoint, I really do. There is much in your post that I cannot and will not argue with. I've said before, and will say again, no one wants peace than those who must fight a war and their friends and families. I was in the military for a long time, and have several friends I consider to be closer than family who still serve. I pray for peace, but not peace at any price. I'm wondering whether somehow the Lutheran church has better intelligence services than the US. I'd like to look at a couple of points in your post, and I'd really like to hear your response.
"If we profess to be a nation "Under God"; if we profess to be a nation with "Christian Ideals", then we should be a nation united demanding that we do not initiate a first strike."
So I am assuming that we must wait until we are struck first. But wait, that happened on 9/11/01, remember? And there is very strong (to the point of overwhelming) evidence of Iraqi involvement in the attack. Or must we wait until Saddam himself delivers an atomic bomb on our doorstep? Make no mistake, he is trying to get the bomb as fast as he can. Estimates released to the press now put Saddam as having the bomb within three years. From the beginning, we have said we would ferret out those responsible for the 9/11 attacks, and we would ensure they would not do so again. Now, you don't want us to do that anymore? You want more attacks of the same and larger scale as 9/11?
"And if our leaders of our country does do a first strike against Iraq (or any other country for that matter), and does so "In the Name of God", know this: They do not represent God's Will."
Again, a strike on Iraq would not be a first strike. Why is that so hard to understand? And you know the mind of God? How interesting, a modern prophet.
"But if we as citizens of this planet unite as "Lovers of Peace", work together to ensure prosperity (and I don't necessarily mean monetary prosperity) for all, then, as a united voice, we will prevail over angry terrorism. These are basic, basic Christian concepts. These concepts, for some reason, are lost in our society's thinking."
Ted, realize that the whole world does not think the way you do. I am assuming by prosperity, you are referring to the prosperity that having a relationship with Christ brings. But that is the very attitude of arrogance that the rest of the world finds so insulting. They will tell you they enjoy the peace and blessings of Allah and his prophet Mohammed. Talk of your "basic, basic Christian concepts" could be offensive to people of Islamic faith.
For an individual to turn the other cheek is admirable and demonstrates great self control. Turing the nation's other cheek is a criminal act that will invite another strike. How many of our citizens must be killed before you say it's OK to defend ourselves?
"If you're reading this, and you're not a Christian, then you have every right to say "Screw this!!" If you believe that we should go to war for the "sake of the nation", you have every right to express that belief.
But if you believe in the messages of love and peace that Christ tried to teach his "children" a little over 2000 years ago, then you know that war is not an option."
Ok, this is pretty offensive, because you are telling me that by virtue of my disagreement with you, I am somehow less Christian than you are. I firmly believe that Christ would expect us, as a nation who values religious freedom, who reject imposition of others religious beliefs, to defend our nation, and Christ always taught that the stronger should protect the weaker.
Remember, Christ was not a man of words alone. Remember his actions when he found moneylenders and merchants defiling his Father's church. Those were pretty violent actions. Yet we know (and I accept) that Christ was free from sin. Can we not learn, then, from his actions, that there are times when force, even unpopular force, may be necessary in an imperfect world?
Did we fail in our Christian duty when we went to war against Nazi Germany? After all, they never struck out at the United States until the United States entered the war with a formal declaration of war against Germany. Yes, they were at war with other parts of the world, but had no immediate quarrel with us. Did we fail as Christians when we went after Imperial Japan when they attacked Pearl Harbor. After all, fewer Americans died at Pearl than died in the WTC attacks.
Make no mistake, we are facing an equally determined enemy, one who is on the verge of obtaining nuclear weapons. I believe the greater sin would be for the US to wait until Saddam has and has used these weapons before intervening. If we have the ability to save lives in our country, and fail to do so because others in the world don't like it, then we have sinned against God and done a great disservice to ourselves.
As I said, I respect your opinion. But don't have the hubris to assume that your opinion is the only opinion that reflects the will of God, and the arrogance to assume the rest of us are unwashed heathen for disagreeing with you.