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Monday August 21st 2017

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War’s definition and justification plague individuals and institutions alike

by Frank Erickson

The Catholic Church did a very good thing during the “Gulf War”…from the New Dictionary of the History of Ideas – “The Catholic Church responded to the Gulf War in a statement that put the very idea of a just war in peril. The theory of just war, they said, “was indefensible and has been abandoned. In reality–with the sole exception of a purely defensive war against acts of aggression, we can say that there are no ‘just wars’ and there is no ‘right’ to wage war.”

Beautiful, without even realizing it, the Catholic Church is moving into a realm of seeing “war’s” non-existence–they touch on it, but then contradict themselves…and I get it, I see why it happens, how the human mind works and how our fear works.

How else can it be approached, that when you say “there are no ‘just wars’ and there is no ‘right’ to wage war,” you are flat out saying there is no way to create “war”-but the backdoor is left open for a “purely defensive war – people have a right to defend themselves.

Okay, understood, but this is how the aggressors get themselves “in,” the aggressors know this. That all they need is for it to be defined as “war” regardless of just or unjust. When those being attacked are free to kill because they are fighting a “purely defensive war,” the aggressors are “in” the same “war” and have the freedom to kill.

The Church doesn’t understand –it can’t exist both ways–that is, if you are going to say that “war” can only exist in a “purely defensive war,” then what you are saying is that “war” is the freedom to kill, if in a “purely defensive” mode.

So then how is it “war” with acts of aggression that have no justification, aggression that has no right to be waged?

The Church puts out a good effort, but they mistakenly reinforce the same old belief, that “war” alone is the justification, the right.

If “war” to the Catholic Church only exists in a “purely defensive” mode, how can “waging war” exist through acts of aggression?

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