Ask your Members of Congress and the President to oppose U.S. military intervention in Iraq and to instead support diplomatic efforts to resolve the roots of the conflict.

Background: President Obama has said that he is prepared to use “targeted and precise” military strikes in Iraq to combat the advances of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) and other armed opposition groups within Iraq. The sending of 300 military advisors, as well as ramped-up intelligence and surveillance operations, could lay the groundwork for U.S. military strikes.

But military strikes will not address the root causes of the conflict—centered around the alienation of Sunni and Kurdish communities by Iraqi Prime Minister Maliki. In fact, military strikes in support of Maliki’s government would almost certainly further inflame the tensions.

While there are no easy solutions to the current crisis in Iraq, the U.S. should support diplomatic efforts with all states in the region and all Iraqi groups that address the concerns of all of Iraq’s communities, rather than favoring one group over another.

In addition, the U.S. should provide resources to address the growing humanitarian crisis in Iraq, as the United Nations estimates that more than 650,000 people have fled their homes in the last two weeks as a result of the violence.

Faith reflection: In 2 Corinthians, we are reminded that God “reconciled us to himself through Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation” (2 Corinthians 5:18). One part of our calling as followers of Christ is to work for reconciliation in situations of brokenness.

Action: Ask your Members of Congress and the President to oppose U.S. military intervention in Iraq. Encourage government officials to increase assistance to those in need as a result of the conflict.

Alert prepared June 23, 2014 by Rachelle Lyndaker Schlabach, director.