Pope Francis: Humanity Is Living in the Midst of World War III

VATICAN CITY, VATICAN - AUGUST 30: Pope Francis leads the holy Mass with the new Cardinals, on August 30, 2022 in Vatican City, Vatican. Cardinal-designates from five continents received their red hat from Pope Francis on August 27, most of whom could one day end up choosing the pontiff's successor. …
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ROME — Pope Francis repeated his belief Wednesday that mankind is in the midst of the third world war in remarks during his weekly general audience.

Addressing Polish-speaking pilgrims at the end of the audience, the pontiff urged his hearers to pray “in a special way” for the Ukrainian people.

“Tomorrow you will remember the anniversary of the outbreak of the Second World War, which so painfully marked the Polish nation,” he said. “Today we are experiencing the third.”

“May the memory of past experiences spur you to cultivate peace in yourselves, in families, and in social and international life,” he concluded.

Francis has often asserted, beginning in 2014, that the many regional conflicts around the globe amount to a third world war waged “piecemeal.”

Last April, Pope Francis warned that Russia’s war on Ukraine risks evolving into World War III and we are “moving towards it as if it were unavoidable.”

In his book Against War: Building a Culture of Peace, Francis declared that from “the beginning of my service as bishop of Rome I have spoken of World War III, saying that we are already living it, though still in pieces.”

“Those pieces have become bigger and bigger, merged together,” he said in the introduction to the book. “So many wars are going on in the world right now, causing immense pain, innocent victims, especially children.”

“These wars seemed ‘distant’ to us until now when, almost suddenly, war has broken out near us. Ukraine has been attacked and invaded,” he said.

“War is not the solution, war is madness, war is a monster, war is a cancer that feeds on itself, engulfing everything!” he wrote. “What’s more, war is a sacrilege that wreaks havoc on what is most precious on our earth, human life, the innocence of the little ones, the beauty of creation.”

The war in Ukraine is “yet another barbarity,” he declared. “War disrupts everything, it is pure madness, its only goal is destruction and it develops and grows through destruction, and if we had memory, we would not spend tens, hundreds of billions of dollars for rearmament, to equip ourselves with increasingly sophisticated weapons.”

What the world needs, he insists, is a “far-sighted politics capable of building a new system of coexistence that is no longer based on weapons, on the power of weapons, on deterrence.”

Who could have imagined that “the specter of a nuclear war would be looming over Europe?” he asked. “And so, step by step, we are moving towards catastrophe.”

“Piece by piece the world risks becoming the theater of a unique Third World War,” he stated. “We are moving towards it as if it were unavoidable.”


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