Pope Francis grants an interview to the Jesuit review ‘La Civiltà Cattolica’, and shares his thoughts on the war in Ukraine, Germany’s synodal path, and signs of fresh life in the Church.
Q] We are living a war of aggression. We write about it in our magazines. What is your advice for reporting on the situation we are experiencing? How can we contribute to a peaceful future?
To answer this question, we have to get away from the common mindset of “Little Red Riding Hood”: Little Red Riding Hood was good and the wolf was the bad guy. Here there are no metaphysical good guys and bad guys, in the abstract. Something global is emerging, with elements that are closely intertwined with each other. A couple of months before the war started, I met with a head of state—a wise man, who speaks very little: very wise indeed. After we discussed the things, he wanted to talk about, he told me that he was very concerned about the way NATO was acting. I asked him why, and he said, “They are barking at the gates of Russia. And they don’t understand that the Russians are imperial and they will not allow any foreign power to approach them.” He concluded, “The situation could lead to war.” This was his opinion. On 24 February, the war began. That head of state was able to read the signs of what was happening.
What we are seeing is the brutality and ferocity with which this war is being carried out by the troops, generally mercenaries, used by the Russians. In reality, the Russians prefer to send forward Chechens, Syrians, mercenaries. But the danger is that we only see this, which is monstrous, and miss the whole drama that is unfolding behind this war, which was perhaps somehow either provoked or not-prevented. I also note the interest in testing and selling weapons. It is very sad, but at the end of the day that is what is at stake.
Someone may say to me at this point: but you are pro-Putin! No, I am not. It would be simplistic and erroneous to say such a thing. I am simply against turning a complex situation into a distinction between good guys and bad guys, without considering the roots << Read More >>