Tag Archive for just war

War Is Hell

In 1622 Powhatan Indians killed 347 men, women, and children at Jamestown, nearly 1/3 of the entire colony. Fifteen years later at the Mystic River, English colonists and their Indian allies trapped an entire village of 600 Pequots inside their fortified wooden houses. The structures were set afire and the inhabitants burned alive. The few who escaped the flames were put to the sword. With each new wave of military technology, the scale of killing in war continually inundates the sensibilities of the past. Before the American Civil War, infantry fought at close range with muskets, one bullet at a

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Just War Doctrine for the Asymmetric World

“Insofar as men are sinful, the threat of war hangs over them, and hang over them it will until the return of Christ.”  Gaudium Et Spes 78, 6. The theory of a “just war,” the moral factors which govern when to enter into war and how to conduct war, reach back into Biblical and Roman antiquity, through the early days of the Church, from Augustine to Aquinas, Renaissance philosophers, and finally summarized in a few points in the current Catechism.  In the main the principles of a just war have been fairly well preserved:  a legitimate and otherwise peace-loving authority

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The (Catholic?) Blair Doctrine

Former British Prime Minister Tony Blair entered the Catholic Church in 2007, several months after leaving office and apparently many years after beginning a serious journey toward Her.  In reading accounts of his conversion I came across an interesting event during his tenure as PM that might have indicated, even back in 1999, that his Catholic formation regarding use of force was well underway. In April 1999 Blair had been invited to speak at the Economic Club of Chicago’s annual meeting, where he presented what became known as the “Blair Doctrine” of international community building including guidelines for warranted military

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