To: His Holiness John Paul II, Apostolic Palace, 00120 Vatican City State, Europe
"Father, why has thou forsaken me?"
Though I am not of the Catholic faith, I agreed to write to you today out of a great sense of urgency and hope you can take the time to read my request.
Because the United States of America is shortly about to launch a catastrophic preemptive war using its own weapons of mass destruction, be they cruise missiles, cluster bombs, "smart" bombs, or "bunker buster" bombs -- against the Iraqi people who are overwhelmingly civilian and non-combatant and 50 percent of whom are children under age 15 -- I am moved to implore you to take the one step that can stop the rapid US momentum toward this coming atrocity.
Indeed, you are the only person on earth who can stop or at least slow down the approaching cataclysm by your physical presence in Baghdad. I urge -- I implore you -- to travel to Baghdad before the signal to loose the bombs is announced by the US -- to allow the UN inspections to carry on -- and to remain there until a peaceful solution to this crisis can be allowed to work
Your physical witness in Iraq can carry the overwhelming moral weight and credibility in the world that can actually make the US government stop. Apparently nothing else will do so.
Hoping you can heed my sincere plea.
Annette adds: it was not MY novel idea. It was actually the brilliant idea of Helen Caldecott, famous writer against nuclear war and peace worker. She sent out an email request with a sample-type letter plus specific address instructions of how to address the Pope. All I did was not use her sample but wrote my own (which I kind of like better.)