Head of the Department for External Church Relations Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk in his interview with Interfax-Religion commented on the current tense situation on the international arena.
- This week was marked with a sharp confrontation between Russia and the USA that threatened with a military clash. What would you recommend to those who are afraid of a commencing war?
- I recommend to pray so that the Lord grants wisdom to authorized people and they feel responsibility for the future of their nations and the whole humanity. To pray so that leaders of superpowers immediately sit at a negotiations table. Today there is a threat not only to Syria, but to the whole world. And each person should spare no effort to escape the tragedy of World War III.
The world turned in a powder keg long ago. We all know about the Caribbean crisis of 1962 that could have resulted in an atomic war. Not all of us know about events of 1983, when the Russian notification system mistakenly informed our military base about nuclear missile attack. If Lieutenant Colonel Stanislav Petrov who was in chief had believed the computer and reported to his commanders about rockets allegedly launched by the USA, there would have been a 'response' attack. However, Petrov did not act according to the instruction, he acted as his heart told him. Eventually, millions lives were saved. However, the situation could have been different if someone else was at his place.
The both incidents show how fragile our world is. And it has become even more fragile from the time of these incidents as atomic potential has been increased. Destructive potential of the atomic weapon that superpowers now have cannot be compared to the bombs, which US president Harry Truman ordered to use against Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Today just a simple accident can not only kill millions of people, but to exterminate the life on Earth.
Military forces of leading military powers are gathering to Syrian banks. Threats are voiced from different sides of the conflict. President Trump in his Twitter threatens with 'smart' rockets and Russian Ambassador to Lebanon promised strikes in response. Informational war is in full swing and informational war frequently proceeds the real war.
The world survived two World Wars in the 20th century. However, they either have taught us nothing or we have not learned their terrific lessons. So much informational mud the countries poured to each other before the commence of World War I! The countries were so eager to unleash the war, as they hoped to solve their problems with its help... But none of the problems were settled, no country won the victory. On the contrary, the power during the war was conveyed to the forces, which broke up another war twenty years after, and that new war was even more bloody and violent.
We should not allow World War III to happen. Any peace-making initiative is welcomed, from politicians, religious leaders and ordinary believers. If we cannot help itt with our work, let us help with prayer.
- What can a Christian stick to during such a dramatic period of history?
- We should hope for God, hope for His mercy. The Church prays 'for the peace of the whole world' at each liturgy and believes that such prayer will be heard. The Church urges all its faithful to such a prayer in moments of crisis.