As far as Popes go, Pope Francis is probably the chillest of them all. He’s auctioned off a Lamborghini for charity, hung out with Leonardo DiCaprio, and has also been blessed with the truly divine gift of sick burns. But the fact that he is such a down to Earth guy means that when he actually gets serious about some of the scarier parts of the world, it probably means we should listen and reflect. Take, for example, his statement about the increasing likelihood of a nuclear war. If the freakin’ Pope is worried about it, then maybe the Dotard-in-Chief will stop tweeting insane things at North Korea? (Well, a girl can hope.)
Pope Francis, who embarked on a trip to Chile and Peru on Monday, spoke about the dangers of nuclear war to reporters. TIME reports that the Pope was asked about the recently increasing geopolitical tensions between the U.S. and North Korea and whether or not nuclear war was on his mind.
“I think we are at the very limit,” he said. “I am really afraid of this. One accident is enough to precipitate things.”
The Pope is not exactly wrong to feel this way. Just this weekend, the entire state of Hawaii had to grapple with the possibility of a ballistic missile for a full 38 minutes before any relief. Hawaii Rep. Tulsi Gabbard has said that the “unacceptable” accidental alert highlights the need for urgent talks with North Korea. “We’ve got to get to the underlying issue here of why are the people of Hawaii and this country facing a nuclear threat coming from North Korea today, and what is this President doing urgently to eliminate that threat?” Gabbard, who is an Iraq War veteran, said.
The Pope did not explicitly discuss North Korea or Hawaii, but he has been an outspoken critic of nuclear war in the past. In December 2015, he called for total nuclear disarmament.
But today, reporters on board the Pope’s flight to Chile received something that made the nuclear threat even more striking: a photo of a Japanese child in 1945 carrying his dead brother after the U.S. nuclear bombing of Nagasaki, per TIME. The Pope had also circulated the same image earlier this year with the inscription: “The young boy's sadness is expressed only in his gesture of biting his lips which are oozing blood.”
“I was moved when I saw this,” Francis said to the reporters on the plane. “The only thing I could think of adding were the words ‘the fruits of war.'”
The fact that even the Pope is worried about a possible nuclear war is indeed concerning.