just war

Legitimate Islam

In his Regensburg Address, Pope Benedict XVI quoted a Byzantine Emperor’s statements on Islam and considered his words rather “brusque” for modern ears; but I don’t think the pope ever criticized the content of those words as being untruthful. Unfortunately, today has proven once again the accuracy of Emperor Manuel Palaeologus’s observations. Mohammedan terrorists have once again…

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To Restore What Has Been Seized Unjustly

If the Christian Religion forbade war altogether, those who sought salutary advice in the Gospel would rather have been counseled to cast aside their arms, and to give up soldiering altogether.   On the contrary, they were told: “Do violence to no man, neither accuse any falsely, and be content with your wages,” the command to…

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From Under the Rubble…A Plea to America’s Bishops

Addressing the crowd gathered in St Peter’s Square for the traditional Angelus prayer on August 10th, Pope Francis renewed his call for prayer and concrete assistance for the suffering populations of Iraq. The news reports coming from Iraq leave us in dismay and disbelief.  Thousands of people, including many Christians, driven from their homes in…

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From Under the Rubble…Catholics, War, and Unintended Consequences

The recent unpleasantness in eastern Ukraine recalls a nagging truth: Wars always bring unintended consequences, and Americans have seen plenty of them, firsthand. In 1916, Woodrow Wilson won reelection on the slogan, “He Kept Us Out Of War!” But Wilson wanted war, and, five months later, he got it. In October 1940, late in the…

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Just War is An Act of Charity

I recently had a brief exchange with a friend over the Obama Administration’s posture towards Syria and the recent words of Pope Francis at his Sunday Angelus where he echoed the words of his predecessor Pope Paul VI, “War never again!”  My friend who is an astute and brilliant attorney, was dissatisfied with the pope’s…

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From Under the Rubble…Should Catholics Join the Military?

­Ten years ago, on March 25, the Feast of the Annunciation of Mary, Most Reverend Edwin F. O’Brien, Archbishop for the Military Services, wrote the chaplains under his command. His letter focused on the question, whether Catholics could morally take part in the invasion of Iraq, which had just begun. The Catholic answer was not…

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