This paper focuses on the attitude of the Holy See towards the Gulf crisis (1990-1991). The UN reaction against the invasion of Kuwait by Iraqi forces was the demonstration that the international order had changed after the collapse of the communist bloc. The crisis involved the whole Middle East: a very important area for the Holy See’s foreign policy, whose main goal was to preserve Arab Christian communities. The Vatican’s political interests in the Middle East determined its diplomacy, aiming to seek a political solution to the crisis. This effort was connected to the search for a global solution to all regional problems: not only the Gulf crisis, but also the Palestinian question and the Lebanese civil war. This perspective remained at the center of the Vatican’s attitude during the conflict. After the end of the war Vatican diplomacy tried to renew the dialogue with the Arab and Muslim world, underlining that the political and military conflict should not affect the life of religious communities.
Keywords: Gulf War, Holy See, Church and Middle East, Holy See and Kuwait, Holy See and Iraq, pope John Paul II