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For Discussion: Just War Principles

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TasunkaWitko View Drop Down
aka The Gipper

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    Posted: 11 June 2012 at 04:45

I'm Lutheran, not Catholic, but I found this to be worthy of further reading and discussion.


Just War Principles

One of the most urgent tasks of Catholic social teaching is to keep the principles of the just war doctrine before the eyes of government leaders and citizens. This essay lays out the fundamental tenets of just-war principles and shows the roots of these principles in the thought of Augustine and Aquinas. Familiarity with the thought of Augustine on peace is especially important to understand both the necessity for a just-war teaching and the preconditions for a just peace.

St. Augustine

Augustine argues that the practice of justice preserves the peace. He understands justice primarily as order in the soul of individuals, which contributes to the proper ordering of society, and thus to peace. Ernest Fortin's summary of Augustine's reflection on justice is helpful: "It exists when the body is ruled by the soul, when the lower appetites are ruled by reason, and when reason itself is ruled by God. The same hierarchy is or should be observed in society as a whole and is encountered when virtuous subjects obey wise rulers, whose minds are in turn subject to the divine law."{1} This means that citizens and rulers must strive to achieve order in their soul by the practice of all the virtues. So, Augustine is talking about justice as a general virtue that encompasses all the virtues that produce order in the soul.

Augustine's description of peace is closely related to his definition of justice.

Thus, the peace of the body is the ordered proportion of its parts. The peace of the irrational soul is the ordered repose of the appetites. The peace of the rational soul is the ordered agreement of knowledge and action. . . . The peace between a mortal man and God is an ordered obedience, in faith, under the eternal law.

The peace among human beings is ordered concord. The peace of the household is an ordered concord concerning commanding and obeying among those who dwell together. The peace of the city is an ordered concord concerning commanding and obeying among the citizens. The peace of the heavenly city is a fellowship perfectly ordered and harmonious, enjoying God and each other in God. The peace of all things is the tranquility of order [tranquiltas ordinis].{2}

Augustine is arguing that the achievement of peace in the city and among nations depends heavily on the dispositions in the souls of rulers and ruled. Peace within individuals is disrupted when they fail to act according to their knowledge of the good and indulge disordered appetites. Concord in the family or the city is, of course, disrupted by the disordered passions in the souls of individuals. For example, the inordinate desire for pleasure, power, gain, glory, honor or revenge could lead individuals to disrupt the concord of the household or the city. The peace between man and God depends on obedience to God's will. Peace among human beings also depends on the universal obedience to God's will. Insofar as human beings disobey God, they will be at odds with each other. The very first pages of Genesis emphasize this point with unmistakable clarity. Cain's killing of Abel quickly follows Adam's and Eve's disobedience of God. John Paul II reflects on this truth in his 1995 encyclical, Evangelium vitae.

Political communities can not be rightly ordered if individuals, especially the leaders, don't have order in their souls produced by the practice of virtues. What caused World War II in Europe, if not the disorder in the soul of Adolph Hitler? Hitler's lust to dominate and his hatred of the Jews led to terrible consequences for vast numbers of people, especially the Jews. What is the principal cause of Al Qaeda's terroristic acts if not the disordered passions of its leaders and members?{3}

I believe it is a misreading of Augustine to think that tranquilitas ordinis refers only to a "dynamic and rightly ordered political community," that can be achieved without justice in the souls of individuals, as George Weigel argues.{4} Augustine, of course would recognize that the desire for gain or the threat of force might induce a bad state or an individual tyrant to forsake evil public purposes. So, a "peace process" might yield some results, even if no effort is made to overcome the vices of the principal antagonists in a conflict. But any peace process will have great difficulty in forging a peace between bitter enemies, if the anger and hatred of many individuals do not lessen. Given Augustine's understanding that peace within and among nations depends on peace or order in the souls of individuals, it comes as no surprise that Augustine believes that war will never disappear from the face of the earth. Because of sin, war is inevitable. The sin or disorder in the souls of individuals leads one state to make war on another. In the words of Ernest Fortin: "However much one may dislike and regret it, war is unavoidable, not because good men want it, but because it is not within their power to avoid it altogether, since it is imposed on them by the wicked . . . "{5} Augustine has no doubt that wicked people will always threaten the peace . Of course, they may be more or less numerous or more or less able to disturb the peace in certain periods of time. In some moments of history peaceful nations may be able to keep the wicked in check by the judicious use of force.

Augustine believes that the evil purposes of the wicked must be resisted out of love, love for them and their victims. Summarizing Augustine's position, Fortin writes, "nothing is more injurious to mankind than that evildoers should be given free reign to prosper and use their prosperity to oppress the good."{6} Obviously, unjust aggressors are resisted so that they can not overthrow nations and inflict harm on innocent people. But they are also resisted to stop them from doing harm to themselves by doing evil to others. Evil people receive a benefit when their license for wrongdoing is wrested away.

When, however, men are prevented, by being alarmed, from doing wrong, it may be said that a real service is done to themselves. The precept, "Resist not evil," was given to prevent us from taking pleasure in revenge, in which the mind is gratified by the sufferings of others, but not to make us neglect the duty of restraining men from sin.{7}

Augustine's advice to political leaders on war follows logically from his position on the love required of political leaders. In letter 138 Augustine says, "If this earthly republic kept the Christian precepts, wars themselves would not be waged without benevolence, so that, for the sake of the peaceful union of piety and justice, the welfare of the conquered would be more readily considered."{8} Augustine wants political leaders to protect the innocent from unjust aggression, and he wants the victorious leaders to benefit the souls of the conquered, who disrupted the peace. In a similar vein, he says in a letter to Boniface, the Roman governor of the province of Africa, "Be a peacemaker, then, even by fighting, so that through your victory you might bring those whom you defeat to the advantages of peace. . . . Let necessity slay the warring foe, not your will. As violence is returned to one who rebels and resists, so should mercy be one who has been conquered or captured, especially when there is no fear of a disturbance of peace. . . ."{9} Augustine wants political leaders to declare war only out of necessity and to show love to their enemies by resisting their evildoing and by showing mercy after they have been conquered. Necessity means there is no other way of protecting innocents and resisting aggressors. As a way of inculcating in leaders a reluctance to see necessity where there is none, Augustine tells leaders to look at just wars as lamentable necessities.

They say, however, that the wise man will wage only just wars -- as if, mindful that he is human, he would rather lament that he is subject to the necessity of waging just wars. If they were not just, he would not be required to wage them, and thus he would be free of the necessity of war. It is the iniquity on the part of the adversary that forces a just war upon the wise man.{10}

If leaders reluctantly come to the conclusion that lethal force has to be used to protect their community and to restrain evildoers, then they are less likely to lie to themselves and declare a war to be necessary when it clearly is not.

Augustine's recommendation to leaders even goes so far as to ask them to lament the existence of all iniquity, even when it doesn't require a decision to go to war.

Even if it did not give rise to the necessity of war, such iniquity must certainly be lamented by a human being since it belongs to human beings. Therefore, let anyone who reflects with sorrow upon these evils so great, so horrid, and so savage, confess that he is miserable. Anyone, however, who either permits or considers these things without sorrow in mind is certainly much more miserable, since he thinks himself happy, because he has lost human feeling.{11}

Augustine is asking a lot of political leaders. If they rise to this standard, there will be many fewer wars.

Augustine realizes that he has to justify his position on the permissible use of lethal force against evildoers by finding a basis in the New Testament. He points out that the New Testament writings show that soldiers serving in the military were recognized as pleasing to God. In response to the Roman centurion who expressed his belief that he could heal his paralyzed servant Jesus said, "Amen, I say to you I have not found such faith in Israel" (Mt 8:8-10). If Jesus disapproved of the profession of arms, Augustine implies, surely he would have said something to the soldier. Augustine also mentions the centurion Cornelius to whom an angel said, "Cornelius, your alms have been accepted and your prayers heard" (Acts 10:4). In letter 138 Augustine says, "Indeed, if Christian teaching condemned all wars, then the advice given in the Gospel to the soldiers asking for salvation would have been to throw down their arms and quit the military completely. What they were told, however, was "terrorize no one, accuse no one falsely, and be content with your pay" (Lk 3:14). "With these words," writes Augustine, "[John the Baptist] commands them to be content with their own pay: he certainly does not prohibit them from serving as soldiers."{12} Augustine interprets this statement of John to be the mind of Christ.

If the teaching of Jesus allows just wars to be fought, that doesn't mean that political leaders and soldiers fighting in a just war need not worry about their attitudes and dispositions during the war. Augustine explains: "The desire for harming, the cruelty of revenge, the restless and implacable mind, the savageness of revolting, the lust for dominating, and similar things -- these are what are justly blamed in wars."{13} In other words, belligerents must observe various norm while fighting in a just war. In later times such norms will be discussed under the rubric of ius in bello.

In summary, Augustine set the stage for the development of just war doctrine by his rich notion of peace, his understanding of war as inevitable because of sin, and his teaching that rulers have an obligation to protect their fellow citizens from unjust attack, even by the judicious use of force. These Augustinian themes remain an important part of modern Catholic teachings on just war, to which we now turn.

Thomas Aquinas and classic just war principles

John Courtney Murray provides a good introduction to thinking about war by posing two questions. "First what are the norms that govern recourse to the violence of war? Second, what are the norms that govern the measure of violence to be used in a war? In other words, when is war rightful, and what is rightful in war?"{14} Today, theologians ask when is there a ius ad bellum and what is ius in bello.

In the thirteenth century Aquinas identified three things to be necessary for a rightful or just war: a decision by a sovereign authority, a just cause and a rightful intention. These categories are still used today, although a just cause is usually listed first. The criterion of a competent public authority means that private individuals can not declare war or summon others to fight in a war. Aquinas gives three reasons for this position. Private parties have the option of asking their superiors or even the sovereign for a redress of their grievances It belongs to the lawful ruler alone both to protect the commonweal against internal disturbances and against foreign enemies. To that end the ruler may punish evil doers and even use lethal force when necessary. James Turner Johnson provides an interesting explanation why competent authority came first for Aquinas and other medieval theorists. Many private individuals were claiming the authority to use arms, which "led to a high level of social violence and fragmented -- often unjust -- rule by local warlords or armed gangs." Secondly, the question arose whether the pope and diocesan bishops had the authority to use armed force. Thomas followed the canonists of the late twelfth and thirteenth centuries in holding that only the sovereign rulers of sovereign political entities had the authority to use armed force.{15}

In his own name Johnson offers additional reasons why a competent authority is so important. "The requirement that there must be a right authority for the use of force means that we must inquire whether there is any authority who can control the employment of force so as to limit its effects, and behind that to inquire as to the breadth and depth of popular support this authority possesses."{16} Johnson is referring not only to the head of a legitimate government, but also to the heads of revolutionary groups.

John Courtney Murray recommends an initial deference to a war decision made by the competent political authorities. "In the just-war theory it has always been maintained that the presumption stands for the decision of the community as officially declared. He who dissents from the decision must accept the burden of proof." Murray objects to the view that the spirit of just-war principles "'demands that every war be opposed until or unless it can be morally justified in relation to these principles.'" This especially makes sense when people are not conversant with just-war principles. "The citizen is to concede the justness of the common political decision, made in behalf of the nation, unless and until he is sure in his own mind that the decision is unjust, for reasons that he in turn must be ready convincingly to declare."{17} Even though Murray advocated deference to authority he was in favor of legalizing selective conscientious objection with the proviso that the objector give an account of his reasons before "a competent panel of judges."{18} Such a requirement, he thought, could raise the level of political discourse in the country and, in my mind, could help political leaders keep in mind relevant moral norms in their decisions about war. Murray's position both serves to heighten respect for political authority and to encourage thoughtfulness on the part of citizens.

Thomas explains the criterion of just cause by citing a passage from Augustine: " A just war is wont to be described as one that avenges wrongs, when a nation or state has to be punished, for refusing to make amends for the wrongs inflicted by its subjects, or to restore what it has seized unjustly."{19} Self-defense is, of course, the third criterion of a just cause. Johnson summarizes Aquinas's understanding of just cause "in terms of three responsibilities" of political leaders; "to maintain order by defending against internal wrongdoing and external attack, to restore justice by punishing those responsible, and to retake any persons, properties or powers wrongly seized by evildoers."{20}

Today, international law seems only to recognize self-defense as a just cause. Yet, Johnson wisely notes that the two other reasons still enter into the determination of a just cause although under the rubric of self defense. He explains: "A retaliatory second strike, for example, would classically have been called 'punishment for evil'; today it is categorized as 'defense.' The use of force to retake Kuwait from Iraq would have classically been called 'retaking something wrongly taken'; in the language of contemporary international law, however, it was 'defense' against 'armed attack' that remained in progress so long as Iraq occupied Kuwait."{21}

The question naturally arises whether the just cause of self-defense includes a preemptive strike. Yes, it does, but great caution is needed. In 1967 Israel correctly determined that their enemies were about to attack and, arguably, did the right thing by taking preemptive measures to protect their citizens. The United States launched a preemptive attack against Iraq in March of 2003 because the administration determined that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction and was planning either to use them or to pass them on to terrorists. Whether the U.S. administration was correct in its assessment has yet to be definitively determined.

The determination of a just cause also requires a comparison of the regimes in nations about to go to war. Writing when the Soviet Union was still in existence, William O'Brien gave an illustrative example, "Specifically one must ask whether the political-social order of a country like the United States is sufficiently valuable to warrant its defense against a country like the Soviet Union, which, if victorious would impose its political social order on the United States."{22} One could also ask whether the regime of South Vietnam was good enough to merit a defense by the United States? That scholars have answered both yes and no to that question indicates that recognizing a just cause will not always be easy.

Other criteria entering into the determination of a just cause are proportionality of ends, last resort and reasonable hope of success. Only leaders with political prudence will be good at assessing these criteria. Everyone in the state of grace has sufficient prudence to work out his salvation, but not necessarily the political prudence that would enable a leader to do what is best for the common good. Aquinas explains, "there is also another diligence which is more than sufficient whereby a man is able to make provision both for himself and for others, not only in matters necessary for salvation, but also in all things relating to human life; and such diligence as this is not in all who have grace."{23} What this means is that even leaders of enormous good will may not be astute enough to determine whether it is right or wrong to use armed force in a particular situation.

"The concept of proportionality [or proportionality of ends] in just war tradition," explains Johnson, "means the overall balancing of the good (and evil) a use of force will bring about against the evil of not resorting to force. It begins with the recognition that a loss of value has already occurred (the just cause) prior to the consideration whether force is justified to restore that value."{24} O'Brien insists that "calculation of proportionality between probable good and evil must be made with respect to all belligerents, affected neutrals, and the international community as a whole before initiating a war and periodically throughout a war to reevaluate the balance of good and evil that is actually produced by the war."{25} Paul Ramsey notes that this calculation is very difficult and can be violated both by acts of omission and commission. "But, of all the tests for judging whether to resort to or participate in war, this one balancing an evil or good effect against another is open to the greatest uncertainty. This, therefore, establishes rather than removes the possibility of conscientious disagreement among prudent men."{26} As Aquinas implies, some people are better at making a prudential decision when many variables have to be considered. Ramsey even refers to the principle of proportionality as the "principle of proportion or prudence."{27}

The criterion of reasonable hope of success doesn't mean that you necessarily have to win the war. "Even if a nation has good reason to think that it will be defeated . . . ," explains James Childress, "its vigorous resistance may preserve significant values beyond number of lives and retention of territory or sovereignty."{28} But it would be imprudent to undertake a defensive war that could only end in defeat with no prospect of achieving any worthwhile goals. A stalwart, heroic resistance, however, could bear witness to beliefs and inspire future generations. Again, this is a prudential calculation.

The requirement that war be a last resort means that "every reasonable peaceful alternative should be exhausted."{29} I would put the emphasis on "reasonable." Prudence can determine that some alternatives are unreasonable or fruitless without actually trying them. This criterion is a logical corollary that war should only be undertaken as a lamentable necessity.

The third major condition for a just war is right intention. Aquinas says the belligerents should intend to promote good or to avoid evil. Then, he quotes two passages from Augustine to indicate more specifically what kinds of things should be avoided and promoted. "True religion looks upon as peaceful those wars that are waged not for motives of aggrandizement, or cruelty, but with the object of securing peace, of punishing evildoers, and of uplifting the good."{30} The second passage indicates only what attitudes are to be avoided. "The passion for inflicting harm, the cruel thirst for vengeance, an unpacific and relentless spirit, the fever of revolt, the lust of power, and such like things, all these are rightly condemned in war." In order to have the kind of intention required by Aquinas political leaders and the body politic would have to possess various virtues in order to stay focused on pursuing a just peace without succumbing to the temptation of indulging disordered passions. For example, it would have been wrong for President George W. Bush to declare war on Iraq because Saddam Hussein made plans to kill his father. O'Brien further explains right intention by adding that just belligerents must prepare themselves for reconciliation after the fighting is over and maintain the virtue of charity toward their enemies throughout the conflict and in the aftermath. This, at least, means that you don't fight the war is such a way as to make reconciliation impossible or very difficult. For example, you don't use disproportionate force or weapons of mass destruction, and you don't display "perfidy, bad faith and treachery."{31}

The proper conduct of the war or ius in bello depends on observing the principle of proportion and the principle of discrimination. O'Brien succinctly explains the former in two brief sentences.

In summary, the principle of proportion deals with military means at two levels: (1) tactically, as proportionate to a legitimate military end, raison de guerre; and (2) strategically, as proportionate to the just-cause ends of the war, raison d'etat. The definition of legitimate military end and the calculation of the proportionality of means to such an end is a matter of the preexisting standards set by the international law of war and of judgments of reasonableness in the light of accepted practices.{32}

Johnson says that "proportionality of means" means "avoiding needless destruction to achieve justified ends."{33} Otherwise stated, "Proportionality imposes a further positive obligation to seek to accomplish justified military objectives by the least destructive means."{34} Weapons of mass destruction would violate the principle of proportionality and the principle of discrimination as well.

The principle of discrimination requires belligerents to avoid "direct, intentional harm to non-combatants."{35} The Catechism quotes Vatican II to explain this principle with this frequently cited statement: "Every act of war directed to the indiscriminate destruction of whole cities or vast areas with their inhabitants is a crime against God and man, which merits firm and unequivocal condemnation."{36} Many would argue that the carpet bombing of German cities in World War II by Great Britain and the U.S. and the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki violated the principle of discrimination. Johnson rightly points out that the intentional killing of the innocent has now become standard policy in many conflicts. "Intentional, direct targeting of civilians has been the pattern in much warfare since World War II, and it is a particular problem in the form that armed conflicts have taken since the end of the cold war."{37} For a long time the United States and the Soviet Union targeted their strategic nuclear weapons against one another's population centers. Contemporary terrorism, is directed at non-combatants on purpose.

Michael Walzer gives a thought-provoking account of the terror bombing that the British decided to inflict on the civilian population in German cities between 1942 and April of 1945. These bombing raids killed about 300,000 people -- most of whom were civilians -- and seriously wounded another 780,000. The attack on Dresden alone killed 100,000 in the spring of 1945. The purpose of this kind of bombing was to undermine the German morale and thus shorten the war and, ultimately, save lives. Arthur Harris, chief of the Bomber Command, argued that the bombing of German cities "was the only force in the West . . . which could take offensive action . . . against Germany, our only means of getting at the enemy in a way that would hurt at all."{38} Harris thought that the destruction of German cities was the only thing that could stop Hitler. Another motive for the bombing of German cities was revenge for the German bombing of Coventry and other British cities. Walzer mentions that according to many historians Churchill had to satisfy the British desire for revenge in order to maintain their fighting spirit. But opinion surveys done as late as 1944 revealed that a majority of the British thought their bombers were only attacking military targets. Since evidence was available indicating that this was not the case, Walzer judges that British saw "what they wanted to believe."

By mid-1942 the Russian and American participation in the war offered other ways of fighting the war besides the bombing of cities. Winston Churchill grants this, but still said, "All the same, it would be a mistake to cast aside our original thought . . . that the severe, ruthless bombing of Germany on an ever-increasing scale will not only cripple her war effort . . . but will create conditions intolerable to the mass of the German population."{39} Walzer maintains that Churchill only had "second thoughts" about this policy after the devastating bombing of Dresden.

To the argument that the terror bombing would shorten the war and save lives Walzer echoes just-war teaching in saying, ". . . the deliberate slaughter of innocent men and women cannot be justified simply because it saves the lives of other men and women."{40} He also notes that the British bombing policy "had further consequences: it was the crucial precedent for the fire-bombing of Tokyo and other Japanese cities and then for Harry Truman's decision to drop atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki."{41}

The Jesuit theologian, John Ford, reflected on the bombing of German cities by the British and American Bomber Commands in his famous 1944 article, "the Morality of Obliteration Bombing." He conclusively shows that both Great Britain and the United States violated the principle of discrimination by targeting the civilian populations of 90 German cites with obliteration bombing, otherwise known as area bombing. His explanation of the key term is as follows:

Obliteration bombing is the strategic bombing, by means of incendiaries and explosives, of industrial centers of population in which the target to be wiped out is not a definite factory, bridge, or similar object, but a large area of a whole city, comprising one-third to two-thirds of its whole built-up area, and including by design the residential districts of workingmen and their families.{42}

Ford quotes American and British leaders to show that they intended to launch direct attacks on civilians. For example, on May 10, 1942, Churchill, reflecting on the bombing of innocent civilians, said:

The civilian population of Germany have an easy way to escape from these severities. All they have to do is leave the cities where munition work is being carried on, abandon the work [as if the majority were engaged in it] and go out into the fields and watch the home fires burning from a distance. In this way they may find time for meditation and repentance.{43}

Ford cites statements by the bishops of France and the Primate of Belgium, Cardinal Van Roey, respectively calling upon the British and Americans to stop the indiscriminate bombing of civilians in France and Belgium. For example, the French hierarchy made this statement in May of 1944.

Almost daily we witness the ruthless devastation inflicted upon the civilian population by air operations carried out by the Allied Powers. Thousands of men, women and children who have nothing to do with war are being killed or injured; their homes are wiped out; churches, schools and hospitals are destroyed. . . . We are convinced that it should be possible to distinguish with greater care between military objectives and humble dwellings of women and children with which they are surrounded.{44}

Ford's judgment: "It is fundamental in the Catholic view that to take the life of an innocent person is always intrinsically wrong, that is, forbidden by natural law."{45}

The only thorny question, Ford argues, is this one: "Who are to be considered non-combatants in a war like the present one?" Some military leaders claim that they can now attack civilians, "because modern industrial and economic conditions have changed the nature of war radically and made them all aggressors."{46} Other arguments used to justify direct attacks on civilians are military necessity, reprisals, the enemy did it first, the situation is abnormal and the whole nation is the aggressor and not just the army. In a country like the United States Ford estimates that least three fourths of the population have nothing to do with the war effort and, therefore, should not be attacked. Ford also rejects the argument that relying on the principle of double effect could justify the bombing of German civilians. By quoting authoritative government sources Ford shows that the terrorization of civilians was the direct object of Allied bombing policy and not the indirect effect of attacks on military targets. Ford's conclusion, "now I contend that it is impossible to make civilian terrorization or the undermining of civilian morale, an object of bombing without having a direct intent to injure civilians."{47} Even if the killing of civilians were an indirect effect of the bombing, there is no proportionate reason that could justify the evil of civilian deaths, not the shortening of the war, nor the saving of soldiers' lives. "The alleged proportionate cause," Ford concludes, "is speculative, future and problematical, while the evil is definite, widespread, certain and immediate."{48}

Many moralists distinguish carefully the direct, intentional killing of noncombatants from unintended harm to civilians resulting from attacks on military targets. The so-called "collateral damage" is justifiable if belligerents are only intending to hit military targets and take reasonable measures to avoid the killing of civilians and the destruction of their property. If the principle of non-combatant immunity could never be violated, even unintentionally, no just war could ever be fought. For, war will always bring about some civilian casualties. In classic just-war theory what is crucial is the intention not directly to attack non-combatants and the adoption of military means that can be controlled. In other words, weapons to be avoided are "broadly destructive or incapable of consistent discriminating use even under the best of conditions. Heavy megatonnage nuclear and thermonuclear weapons fall into the first category, while chemical and bacteriological weapons fall into the latter."{49} If these weapons have long-term effects, such as the spread of radiation, the moral case against them is even stronger.

In thinking about the principle of non-combatant immunity moralists necessarily make use of the principle of double effect. The direct intention of a belligerent is to hit a military target. That is a morally good act in a just war. An unintended, though foreseen consequence of his action is the killing innocent civilians. So, there is a double effect of his action, one intended, the other unintended. This is a justifiable action if the belligerent only intends to hit the military target, does his best to avoid hitting innocent civilians and simply tolerates the inevitable collateral damage. Killing civilians cannot be part of his intention and not the means to accomplish his end. The good achieved, the striking of the military target must outweigh the unintended evil, namely, the death of civilians. In other words, "the good effect must be sufficiently desirable to compensate for the allowing of the bad effect."{50}

The emergence of revisionist or proportionalist moral theology has induced some theologians to look at the principle of discrimination in another way. "The essence of the revisionist effort," writes J. Bryan Hehir in his essay on the just-war ethic, "is to recast the moral calculus for decision-making in conflict situations. The principle move is to devalue the role of direct vs. indirect intentionality and to place at the center of the calculus the concept of proportionate reason." Nothing is intrinsically evil in itself. The moral calculus depends on the object of the act as well as the intention, circumstances and consequences. The revisionist argues that a person can do evil to achieve good for a proportionate reason. So, a belligerent can kill civilians during war time if there is a "proportionate reason." According to the revisionists, there is no need to make use of the direct-indirect distinction. It is right to attack the military target if there is a proportionate or commensurate reason for killing innocent civilians as well. In Richard McCormick's words, "If one examines carefully all the instances where the occurrence of evil is judged acceptable in human action, a single decisive element is at the heart of the moral analysis: proportionate reason. . . ." This is one of the positions determined to be incompatible with Catholic teaching by Pope John Paul II in his encyclical, Veritatis splendor (The Splendor of Truth).

The revisionist perspective, introducing a sea-change in moral theology, increases the difficulty of discerning a proportionate reason for tolerating the death of innocent civilians. When the principle of double effect is observed, certain kinds of actions are ruled out a priori before the deliberation about proportionality even begins. According to that principle,

(1) The act itself must be morally good or at least indifferent. (2) The agent may not positively will the bad effect but may merely permit it. If he could attain the good effect without the bad effect, he should do so. (3) . . . the good effect must be produced directly by the action, not by the bad effect. Otherwise, the agent would be using a bad means to a good end, which is never allowed. (4) the good effect must be sufficiently desirable to compensate for the allowing of the bad effect.{51}

Observing the first three requirements of the principle of double effect automatically eliminates some alternatives that could come to the mind of a person attempting to discern a proportionate reason for an action. These requirements are really rules of prudence to be welcomed and followed by a prudent person. Discernment in difficult circumstances is easier when the range of alternatives is reduced by following reliable guidelines. The revisionist perspective increases the chances of erroneous judgment about the presence of a proportionate reason for permitting a bad effect to occur.

Applying the Just War Ethic

In 1993 the USCCB{52} (known then as the National Conference of Catholic Bishops) published a statement in which they briefly addressed the difficulty of applying just-war criteria.

Moral reflection on the use of force calls for a spirit of moderation rare in contemporary political culture. The increasing violence of our society, its growing insensitivity to the sacredness of life and the glorification of the technology of destruction in popular culture could invariably impair our society's ability to apply just-war criteria honestly and effectively in time of crisis.

In the absence of a commitment of respect for life and a culture of restraint, it will not be easy to apply the just war tradition, not just as a set of ideas, but as a system of effective social constraints on the use of force.{53}

The bishops talk about the culture because they know that the opinions of citizens will affect the way political leaders make decisions about war and peace. Given the reality of abortion, surreptitious euthanasia and the lack of restraint with respect to sex, alcohol, and money, many citizens will not be in a position to reflect carefully about the use of lethal force. Back in the 1960s John Courtney Murray observed: "the American attitude toward war has tended to oscillate between absolute pacifism in peacetime and extremes of ferocity in wartime."{54} As examples of ferocity he mentioned the fire bombing of Tokyo, the atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and the saturation bombing of German cities. Murray contends that Americans easily put aside ius in bello in seeking the defeat of Japan and Germany. Recently, Jean Bethge Elshtain remarked that just-war thinking presupposes a certain kind of citizen, "one attuned to moral reasoning and capable of it; one strong enough to resist the lure of seductive enthusiasms of violence; one laced through with a sense of responsibility and accountability; in other words, a morally formed character."{55} To sum up what the bishops, Murray and Elshtain are saying: citizens in a democratic nation need to be virtuous and capable of moral reasoning in their political discourse. This is a high standard, which will surely not always be met. What could save a democratic nation from violating ius ad bellum and ius in bello? I would suggest the quality of its leaders. But since the election of such leaders will not always happen, a nation will fail, at times or often, to grasp and apply just-war principles. This is a sobering thought.

George Weigel has argued that "the just war tradition remains alive in our national cultural memory."{56} Certainly, it does inform American mores, but there have been violations of just-war teachings in America's wars and there will be more in the measure that education and character formation are deficient. One form of education is that given by the president from his "bully pulpit" and other spokesmen for the nation. Writing about the morality of the first Gulf war, Elshtain addressed the question of the many, unintended civilian deaths caused by errant bombing in Baghdad. She rightly commented, "this tragedy should have been addressed by the President and our military spokesmen in language of deep regret and acknowledgment of responsibility -- a responsibility ironically magnified precisely because our bombs were so smart."{57} I vividly remember the wild cheering when President George Bush senior addressed Congress shortly after the first Gulf War ended. There was no mention of regret for the unintentional killing of civilians. By his silence President Bush passed up a valuable opportunity to educate the citizenry by apologizing for killing Iraqi civilians while attacking military targets. Saying such things from the heart on momentous occasions would teach many Americans a valuable lesson about the just-war ethic and help insure its preservation.

In writing about the first Gulf War Elshtain brought up another important topic: the role of women soldiers in war. She expressed misgivings about sending young mothers off to the war zone, separating them form their infants and young children. "A society that puts the needs of its children dead last," she writes, "is a society 'progressing' rapidly toward moral ruin."{58} Even Israel, Elhstain points out, exempts married women from all military service. Israel does have women soldiers, but they don't participate in combat on land, sea or in the air. In the first Gulf War American women were in the war zone but didn't participate in combat, although an NBC/Wall Street Journal poll revealed that "74 percent of women and 71 percent of women . . . favored sending women on combat missions."{59} Sixty-four percent of Americans were, however against sending mothers of young children into combat. Given the emphasis on rights, equality of opportunity, careerism and individualism in American culture, it is not surprising to see a majority of Americans in favor of giving women the opportunity to earn their spurs by participating in combat. The desire of 64 percent of Americans to spare mothers of young children from combat showed that the culture had not completely overwhelmed common sense. Even during the recent war with Iraq Americans reacted differently when women soldiers were taken prisoner. Today new mothers will be deployed in the war zone, but still not in ground combat. Women, however, are now eligible to fly attack planes and attack helicopters.

In a recent interview Cardinal Ratzinger made pointed comments about the growing tendency to recruit women as soldiers.

Personally it still horrifies me when people want women to be soldiers just like men, when they, who have always been the keepers of the peace and in whom we have always seen a counterforce working against the male's willingness to stand up and go to war, now likewise run around with submachine guns, showing that they can be just as warlike as men.{60}

Ratzinger implies that to have about half the human race as a force for peace is a good thing for nations. Excepting women from combat is a reminder that fighting in a war, however just, is an exceptional and undesirable activity. Even though soldiers can do righteous deeds by participating in a just war, they do not hope and pray that all their friends and relatives can join them. War is always a lamentable necessity even when it is a righteous deed.

One last point. The responsibility of applying the just war ethic belongs to political leaders, not religious authorities. The latter can lay out the principles and even make a judgment about their application, but political leaders must assume the final responsibility for particular judgments about whether to go to war and how to fight it. George Weigel explains:

If the just war tradition is indeed a tradition of statecraft, then the proper role of religious leaders and public intellectuals is to do everything possible to clarify the moral issues at stake in a time of war, while recognizing that what we might call the 'charism of responsibility' lies elsewhere -- with duly constituted public authorities, who are more fully informed about the relevant facts and who must bear the weight of responsible decision-making and governance. It is simple clericalism to suggest that religious leaders own the just war tradition in a singular way.{61}


Vatican II's Gaudium et spes addresses the subject of pacifism in two oft-quoted passages.

We cannot fail to praise those who renounce the use of violence in the vindication of their rights and who resort to methods of defense which are otherwise available to weaker parties too, provided that this can be done without injury to the rights and duties of others or of the community itself.{62}

It seems right that laws make provision for the case of those who for reasons of conscience refuse to bear arms, provided however, that they accept some other form of service to the human community.{63}

Vatican II recognizes that some individuals "for reasons of conscience" cannot personally participate in the defense of their country by bearing arms. This is a legitimate and praiseworthy moral choice for individuals to make, argues Vatican II, as long as their conscientious decision doesn't harm other individuals or the community itself. The Council further argues that "it seems right" (aequum videtur) that the laws allow individuals to be conscientious objectors to all wars provided that they perform some other service for the community. It is interesting to note that Vatican II takes pains to qualify its endorsement of conscientious objection in two ways: it must not do injury to other individuals or to the political community and the conscientious objectors must perform some kind service for their fellow citizens. If members of the armed forces are "agents of security and freedom on behalf of their people," then it is fitting and necessary for conscientious objectors likewise to serve their country in some way. In no way does Vatican II call into question the right of a state to defend itself from unjust attack. Immediately after expressing its approval of state-sanctioned conscientious objection, Vatican II reaffirms Church teaching on the legitimacy of just defense.

As long as the danger of war remains and there is no competent and sufficiently powerful authority at the international level, governments cannot be denied the right to legitimate defense once every means of peaceful settlement has been exhausted. Therefore, government authorities and others who share public responsibility have the duty to protect the welfare of the people entrusted to their care and to conduct such grave matters soberly.{64}

The question naturally arises today whether Vatican II authorizes conscientious objectors to believe as Catholic doctrine that no state may legitimately defend itself with armed force against an unjust attack? The answer is clearly no.

The Council doesn't make clear in what circumstances conscientious objection of some individuals would pose a danger to others or to the nation itself. Noteworthy too is the Council's way of endorsing the legalization of conscientious objection. It "seems right" for government to exempt conscientious objectors from military service by law. Vatican II doesn't urge governments to enact such legislation. The Catechism of the Catholic Church, however, does encourage governments to grant exemption to military service in these word: "Public authorities should make equitable provision for those who for reasons of conscience refuse to bear arms."{65}

In line with Vatican Council II the Catechism doesn't teach that it is acceptable for a Catholic to believe that the state is forbidden to defend itself with force of arms against an unjust attack. Official Church teaching only recognizes the right of individuals to recuse themselves from bearing arms for reasons of conscience. The Council and the Catechism expect conscientious objector to serve their country in some other way when they are unable to bear arms. Catholic citizens are, however, encouraged to use just war criteria to determine whether or not a particular war is justified. The very existence of just war doctrine implies that in some instances Catholics will have to refuse to fight in what they deem to be unjust wars. This is what is called selective conscientious objection and is the necessary consequence of just-war reasoning. By endorsing the concept of a just war, Vatican II implicitly gives moral approval to selective conscientious objection, but doesn't call for its legalization or even mention it by name.

In the 1960s the National Advisory Commission on Selective Service took up as one of its topics the question of selective conscientious objection (SCO). Only a minority on the commission, including John Courtney Murray, S.J., as mentioned, voted in favor of its legalization. Commenting on the minority report, Paul Ramsey made several revealing observations on implementing legal provisions for SCO in the United States. "Its acceptability depends first of all upon whether there exists in the ethos of this country a moral consensus or doctrine on the uses of military force" that could be used in determining the statutory grounds on which individuals could base their objections to a particular war the United States was waging or planning to wage.{66} Ramsey believes this moral consensus is indispensable as a basis for deliberation and judgment. Without it the decisions of individuals would be arbitrary or simply the result of a partisan political judgments. He believes that no nation should exempt its citizens from participating in a particular war for merely "political" reasons.

One of the main reasons why Congress will not and should not legalize SCO, according to Ramsey, is the disappearance of common theological and philosophical principles in the nation and within religious communities.

The first trend is the steady erosion, for at least three or four decades, of shared basic convictions concerning normative structures in social ethics having for religious people final theological warrant. There has been a flight from the use of rational principles of analysis, and a lack of political philosophy or norms governing our deliberation upon moral questions. This means that there can be no fundamental moral consensus among or within the religious communities of our nation. . . . The name of the game is casuistry without principles, decision-making that is believed to be more responsible because situations are so unique that there are no relevant, specific norms.

Writing in the late 1960s, Ramsey believed that the "refinement in moral judgment" would be very rare in the discussion of every moral matter, "including the morality of war." As a result individuals appearing before a government panel to argue their case for the status of SCO would hardly be in a position to elevate the discourse of the nation either on the decision to go to war or on war conduct. Ramsey hoped that SCO were possible in the United States, because thoughtful individuals objectors to a particular war would engender "the state's acknowledgment of some transcendence over its particular decisions on the part of this juridical order, resident within its own body politic, even when it does not agree or think it possible to act in accord with these claims."{67} In other words, public recognition of well thought-out conscientious objection to a particular war would remind political leaders and the entire body of citizens that policy and laws are subject to transcendent moral norms. That kind of reminder is important for the health of political life.

Murray's endorsement of SCO was not without some caveats. Like Ramsey, he is concerned about the ignorance of selective conscientious objectors. They could have an erroneous conscience, which will have to be respected by the government if SCO is legalized. Consequently, Murray argues that "the political community cannot be blamed for harboring the fear that if the right to selective objection is acknowledged in these sweeping terms [necessary deference to decisions of an erroneous conscience], it might possibly lead to anarchy, to the breakdown of society, and to the paralysis of public policy."{68} The only way SCO would work, Murray argues, is if there were enough "political and moral discretion" in the body politic. The consciences of citizens would have to be formed and informed.

Murray doesn't say, like Ramsey, that such discretion doesn't exist on a wide scale in America., but he does say: "To cultivate this power of discretion is a task for all of us."{69}

In 1968, three years after the close of Vatican Council II, the U.S. bishops expressed their approval of conscientious objection, and then called for the legalization of selective conscientious objection, although with none of the caveats mentioned by Ramsey and Murray.

We . . . recommend a modification of the Selective Service Act making it possible, although not easy, for so-called selective conscientious objectors to refuse -- without fear of imprisonment or loss of citizenship -- to serve in wars which they consider unjust or in branches of service (e.g., the strategic nuclear forces) which would subject them to the performance of actions contrary to deeply held moral convictions about indiscriminate killing. Some other form of service to the human community should be required of those so exempted.{70}

In 1971 and 1983 the bishops reiterated their support of conscientious objection and their call for the legalization of selective conscientious objection.

In 1983 the bishops also begin to talk about a tradition of non-violence that complements just-war teaching. "Both find their roots in the Christian theological tradition; each contributes to the full moral vision we need in pursuit of a human peace. We believe the two perspectives support and complement one another, each preserving the other from distortion."{71} This sentence makes one pause and ask whether the bishops understand by the tradition of non-violence the belief that no state may take up arms to defend itself. Subsequent episcopal statements seem to clarify their position. In their reflection on the tenth anniversary of their 1983 peace pastoral the bishops have a subheading entitled "Two Traditions: Non violence and Just War." There they say that there are diverse and valid approaches in the Catholic Church on the use of force. One group rightly believes in the just-war ethic. "Others object in principle to the use of force, and these principled objections to the just-war tradition are sometimes joined with other criticisms that just-war criteria have been ineffective in preventing unjust acts of war in recent decades and that these criteria cannot be satisfied under the conditions of modern warfare."{72} These words seems to mean that Catholics may validly embrace the just-war teaching or object to the use of force by states. That the bishops do indeed embrace the latter position seems to be confirmed by a statement they made on November 14, 2001. In a section discussing the use of military force in Afghanistan, the bishops make clear that they adhere to the just war ethic, but affirm that other Catholics may legitimately reject it. The key sentence is as follows: "Some Christians profess a position of principled non-violence, which holds that non-military means are the only way to respond in this case [the effort by the United States to fight terrorists in Afghanistan]. This is a valid Christian response."{73} Are the bishops, then, really saying that Catholics may validly hold that the use of force, meeting just-war criteria, is either right or wrong? It wouldn't make sense for them to undermine their own endorsement of the just war ethic and raise a serious theological difficulty. If the bishops ever taught that Catholics can validly believe that the just-war ethic is either moral or immoral, soon theologians and others would reasonably say why don't you say the same thing about contraception, same-sex marriage, divorce etc. In my mind, the bishops were at least, careless in their choice of words. According to episcopal advisers, the bishops mean to endorse just personal conscientious objection, as the quotations in the appendix of their statement imply. The rush of deadlines for issuing timely statements sometimes produces inexact language in episcopal statements.

No theological difficulty exists if the Church teaches the just war-ethic and the right of individuals not to bear arms for reasons of conscience. When people decide to become conscientious objectors, they could still believe that their country could defend itself in a just war. An analogy may clarify this point. Individuals can both believe that it is right for them to live a life of celibacy and right for others to enter into the state of matrimony. Likewise, people can believe that it would be wrong for them to participate in a just war because of their chosen way of life, but right for others because it is their way of fulfilling duties to God and country. Thomas Aquinas both taught that war can be just under certain conditions, and that bishops and priests cannot participate in just wars because of their way of life. He first argues that "warlike pursuits are full of unrest, so that they hinder the mind very much from the contemplation of Divine things, the praise of God , and prayers for the people, which belongs to the duties of the cleric." Secondly, he says that it is not fitting for clerics to shed blood, even in a just war, because they have the duty to enact the memorial of Christ's death and resurrection. He adds that it is "more fitting that they should be ready to shed their blood for Christ, so as to imitate in deed what they portray in their ministry." Aquinas gives a third reason in a reply to an objection. He says, "Although it is meritorious to wage a just war, nevertheless it is rendered unlawful for clerics, by reason of their being deputed to works more meritorious still. Thus the marriage act may be meritorious; and yet it becomes reprehensible in those who have vowed virginity, because they are bound to a greater good."{74} If clerics should be exempt from military service because of their work, one could argue that the same exemption should be extended to lay persons who make special commitments to follow Christ more closely in some way. The Church could then teach that there is a special kind of life that goes along with being a pacifist, that is, a greater than average dedication to the highest level of perfection demanded by the Gospel.

What about Catholic conscientious objectors who deny that there is such a thing as a justifiable use of force by a state? It seems to me that Catholics should not embrace absolute pacifism, because of the Church's longstanding support of the just-war ethic. To deny a state the moral authority to defend with military force its own people from unjust attack or innocent victims in other countries is a failure to love one's neighbor. It may also be an implicit denial that sin can have devastating effects if not resisted by force of arms when the conditions for a just war are met. (At other times the effects of sin will have to be borne with patient endurance, as the Bible teaches.) Thirdly, the acceptance of both absolute pacifism and the just war ethic as authentic Catholic teaching lend support to those theologians who advocate the legitimacy of dissent from longstanding Catholic moral teaching by means of proportionalism or historicism.


{1} Ernest Fortin, Classical Christianity and the Political Order: Reflections on the Theologico-Political Problem, edited by J. Brian Benestad (Lanham, MD: Rowman& Littlefield, 1996), 7. Cf. Augustine, The City of God, XIX.21.

{2} The City of God, XIX, 13.

{3} Evangelium vitae (The Gospel of Life), numbers 7-10.

{4} George Weigel, "Moral Clarity in a Time of War," First Things, no. 129 (2003): 24.

{5} Classical Christianity and the Political Order, 46.

{6} Classical Christianity and the Political Order, 46.

{7} Augustine, Letter 47, 5, quoted from Herbert A. Deane, The Political and Social Ideas of St. Augustine (New York: Columbia University Press, 1963), 164.

{8} Augustine, Political Writings, Edited by Ernest L. Fortin and Douglas Kries (Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 1996), 209.

{9} Augustine, Political Writings, 219

{10} The City of God, XIX, 7.

{11} The City of God, XIX, 7

{12} Augustine, Political Writings, 209.

{13} Augustine, Political Writings, 221-222.

{14} John Courtney Murray, "War and Conscience." in A Conflict of Loyalties: The Case for Selective Conscientious Objection, ed. James Finn (New York: Pegasus, 1968), 21.

{15} James Turner Johnson, Morality and Contemporary Warfare (New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 1999), 46-47.

{16} James Turner Johnson, Can Modern War Be Just (New Haven and London: Yale University Press, 1984), 24.

{17} Murray, "War and Conscience," 27.

{18} Murray, "War and Conscience," 28.

{19} Summa theologiae, II-II, qu. 40, a. 1.

{20} Morality and Contemporary Warfare, 48.

{21} Morality and Contemporary Warfare, 31.

{22} William V. O'Brien, The Conduct of Just and limited War (New York: Praeger Publishers, 1981), 20.

{23} Summa theologiae, II-II, qu. 47, a.14.

{24} Morality and Contemporary Warfare, 35.

{25} The Conduct of Just and Limited War, 28.

{26} Paul Ramsey, The Just War: Force and Political Responsibility (New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 19680, 195

{27} Paul Ramsey,"Is Vietnam a Just War? in War in the Twentieth Century: Sources in Theological Ethics, Edited by Richard. B. Miller (Louisville, Ky: Westminster/John Knox Press,1992), 189.

{28} James F. Childress, "Just-War Criteria," in War in the Twentieth Century, 360.

{29} The Conduct of Just and Limited War, 33.

{30} Summa theologiae, II-II, qu. 40, art.1.

{31} Childress, "Just-War Criteria" in War in the Twentieth Century, 362.

{32} O'Brien, The Conduct of Just and Limited War, 42.

{33} Johnson, Morality and Contemporary Warfare, 36.

{34} Johnson, Morality and Contemporary Warfare, 157

{35} Johnson, Morality and Contemporary Warfare, 36.

{36} Catechism of the Catholic Church, quoting Gaudium et spes, no. 80.

{37} Johnson, Morality and Contemporary Warfare, 120.

{38} Michael Walzer, Just and Unjust Wars: A Moral Argument with Historical Illustrations (New York: Basic Books, 2000), 258.

{39} Walzer, Just and Unjust Wars, 261.

{40} Walzer, Just and Unjust Wars, 262.

{41} Walzer, Just and Unjust Wars, 255.

{42} John C. Ford, "The Morality of obliteration Bombing." Theological Studies 5 (1944), 267.

{43} Ford, "The Morality of Obliteration Bombing," 274.

{44} Ford, "The Morality of Obliteration Bombing," 266.

{45} Ford, "The Morality of Obliteration Bombing," 272.

{46} Ford, "The Morality of Obliteration Bombing," 281.

{47} Ford, "The Morality of Obliteration Bombing," 294.

{48} Ford, "The Morality of Obliteration Bombing," 302.

{49} Johnson, Can Modern War be Just, 71.

{50} F. J. Connell, "Principle of Double Effect," New Catholic Encyclopedia, (1981), 1021.

{51} F.J. Connell, "Double Effect, Principle of, New Catholic Encyclopedia, volume 4, 1021.

{52} United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.

{53} NCCB (Now USCCB), "The Harvest of Justice is Sown in Peace": A Reflection of the National Conference of Catholic Bishops on the Tenth Anniversary of The Challenge of Peace. This quotation is from page 12 of the statement, which can be found on the web site of the USCCB (

{54} Murray, "War and Conscience," 20.

{55} Jean Bethge Elshtain, "Just War as Politics: What the Gulf War Told Us About Contemporary American Life," in But Was It Just? Reflections on the Morality of the Persian Gulf War (New York: Doubleday, 1992), 46.

{56} George Weigel, "Moral Clarity in a Time of War," First Things, no 129 (2003): 21.

{57} Elshtain, "Just War as Politics: What the Gulf War Told Us About Contemporary Life," 51.

{58} Elshtain, "Just War As Politics: What the Gulf War Told Us About Contemporary Life," 58.

{59} Elshtain, "Just War as Politics: What the Gulf War Told Us About Contemporary Life," 57.

{60} Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, God and the World: A Conversation with Peter Seewald (San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 2002), 82.

{61} George Weigel, "Moral Clarity in a Time of War," First Things, no. 129 (2003): 27.

{62} Gaudium et spes, 78.

{63} Gaudium et spes. 79.

{64} Gaudium et spes, 79.

{65} Catechism of the Catholic Church, no. 2311.

{66} Paul Ramsey, "Selective Conscientious Objection: Warrants and Reservations." in A Conflict of Loyalties: the Case For Selective Conscientious Objection, edited by James Finn (New York: Pegasus, 1968), 39

{67} Paul Ramsey, "Selective Conscientious Objection," 73-74.

{68} John Courtney Murray, "War and Conscience," 30.

{69} John Courtney Murray, "War and Conscience," 30.

{70} "Human Life in Our Day," in Pastoral Letters of the American Hierarchy, 1792-1970, # 152, p.704

{71} The Challenge of Peace, 120.

{72} {The Harvest of Peace is Sown in Peace, p. 8 on USCCB website

{73} USCCB, A Pastoral Message: Living With Faith and Hope After September 11, p.5 on USCCB website.

{74} Thomas Aquinas, II-II, qu. 40, art. 2.

TasunkaWitko - Chinook, Montana

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