1990 Executive Council Statement Concerning First Strike Offensive, Arms Sales, and Transfers of Weapons and United Nations Authority in the Middle East

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United Church of Christ, Minutes of the Executive Council, October 13 – 17, 1990. Vote 90-10-EC-32, Statement of the Executive Council Concerning First Strike Offensive, Arms Sales, and Transfers of Weapons and United Nations Authority in the Middle East, pp. 19-20. Reproduced from the Executive Council Collection, United Church of Christ Archives.

STATEMENT OF THE EXECUTIVE COUNCIL CONCERNING FIRST STRIKE OFFENSIVE, ARMS SALES AND TRANSFERS OF WEAPONS AND UNITED NATIONS AUTHORITY IN THE MIDDLE EAST, 90-10-EC-32

It was

VOTED:  The Executive Council adopts the following statement concerning first strike offensive, arms sales and transfers of weapons and United Nations authority in the Middle East: 

The Executive Council of the United Church of Christ, meeting in Anaheim, California, October 13 – 17, 1990 is increasingly concerned about the growing possibility of open military conflict in the Middle East and the untold suffering that would result.  Therefore, the Executive Council:

  1. Calls upon the President of the United States to refrain from any offensive military action or first strike against Iraq or any attempt to use U.S. forces unilaterally to retake Kuwait.
  2. Calls upon the President of the United States to use this first post Cold War crisis as an opportunity to build a positive common security structure through the United Nations. U.S. troops currently in the region should be placed under United Nations authority. Work through the United Nations will demonstrate to the world that the United Nations is able to handle the invasion of one state by another.
  3. Calls upon the President of the United States not to use this Gulf crisis as an opportunity for arms sales to the Middle East, transferring tens of billions of dollars of weaponry to Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Israel, and other states.  Massive arms sales to one government often ends in the hands of another government, and the attempt to bring peace to the Middle East by such arms sales is a failed policy which does not bring security but only costs human lives.

The Executive Council of the United Church of Christ condemns the invasion of Kuwait by Iraq and the threats to Saudi Arabia by Iraq, and calls on Iraq to withdraw from Kuwait and to abide by all United Nations resolutions.

It is the prayer of the Executive Council that war can be avoided, that the lives of thousands of innocent people can be spread, and that peace with justice will prevail in the Middle East.

Following the action, the Rev. Paul Sherry called attention to the fact that the Office for Church in Society had prepared the draft for this resolution and he expressed his appreciation, saying it was a very powerful statement.

 


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