• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Just War

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

"It is impossible to be a Christian and joined the armed forces!" Do you agree? Support your answer with evidence from Christian (and other) teachings. I believe that it can be very difficult to be a Christian and join the armed forces but I do not believe that it is impossible. War is defined as armed hostilities between peoples, frequently different nations, sometimes between different parties within a nation, as in a civil war, or between one small group and the state, as in a guerrilla war. For followers of world religions often caught up in conflict, war poses fundamental questions about human worth and dignity. Many have questioned the ethics of the great bombing raids of WW II, When British and American bombers rained down fire and destruction on millions of German women and children, and the use by America of the Atomic bombs on Japan. In addition, when the Americans waged war in Vietnam in the 1960's, their express desire was not to kill the enemy but to 'incapacitate' as many civilians as possible. ...read more.

Middle

Even Pope John Paul II, not usually a pacifist, has eloquently expressed the pacifist position: "Violence is a lie, for it goes against the truth of our faith, the truth of our humanity. Violence destroys what it claims to defend: the dignity, the life, and the freedom of human beings. Violence is a crime against humanity, for it destroys the very fabric of society... To all of you who are listening I say: do not believe in violence; do not support violence. It is not the Christian way. It is not the way of the Catholic Church. Believe in peace and forgiveness and love, for they are Christ." Pacifists maintain that early Christian pacifists perceived war to be incompatible with their Christian obedience; the requirement to love our enemy is absolute and the authority and function of the state is incompatible with this. "We utterly deny all outward wars and strife and fightings with outward weapons, for any end or under any pretence whatsoever. And this is our testimony to the whole world. The spirit of Christ, by which we are guided, is not changeable, so as once to command us from a thing of ...read more.

Conclusion

For those who hold that the principle of the sanctity of life demands that all deliberate acts of killing - including those in war - are forbidden, the just war theory can never legitimise military action which is nothing more than state approved and state sponsored murder. "It is my conviction that killing under the cloak of war is nothing but murder." - Albert Einstein In my opinion Omar Bradley sums up our world's attitude to war in one paragraph: "Ours is a world of nuclear giants and ethical infants, we know more about war than we know about peace, more about killing than we do about living. We have grasped the mystery of the atomic bomb and rejected the Sermon on the Mount." John Stott proposes that Christian peacemakers should pray, set an example as 'a community of peace', promote public debate on issues of peace and war, and maintain a confident stance that peace is a realistic and desirable goal. Personally, I believe that this can be achieved much more easily if one is a part of the armed forces than if one is a protester or a campaigner. Gemma Durcan 11th Sept '04 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Practical Questions section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Practical Questions essays

  1. Is the term 'Just War' now outdated?

    Thus it seems reasonable to suggest that the theory is outdated, for technological advancements magnified the potential violent impact of war.

  2. Examine and comment on Christian beliefs about homosexuality

    other than intercourse between a husband and wife to be a grave moral sin. Forbidden practices include masturbation, pre-marital sex, post-marital sex, extra-marital sex and all same-sex behaviour. (AS Religious Studies Sarah K.Tyler and Gordon Reid) However, they believe that there are other forms of discrimination against gays and lesbians, which are just.

  1. The Ethical Debate Concerning Cloning.

    Although Jewish scholars present seeming hesitation, Christians seem to be more open in their protest against the use of cloning. Protestant theology has not shown all cloning to be bad, although most believe that what is acceptable is unclear. One scholar said that it "crosses the line.

  2. Is Christ a Kantian?

    This article is divided into 5 sections. The first section deals with the philosophical limitations of Kantian Ethics. The second section shows how the philosophy of Christ can help us resolve such problems. The third section deals with the complete explanation of ethics.

  1. Modern life-prolonging technologies have sharpened some ancient dilemmas on the value of life.

    I object to the ethical fear and torpidity -what Santayana called moral cramp- that has refused to recognize that certain technical developments have changed the nature of death. Section 1 and Section 2 describe the SL and QL positions, their variations, and points of disagreement.

  2. An analysis of a film that does more than just entertain its audience: Blade ...

    The special effects and fight scenes did much to increase the entertainment level of the film. But most of all the aspect of the film that entertains the audience the most is the presence of Harrison Ford, who still is to this day a huge star.

  1. Assess whether an unequal distribution of property between individuals could be a feature of ...

    Nozick goes onto state that we have ?self-ownership? of the things we create. This would therefore suggest that the proletariat working in factories, and the like, would have a right to what they produce since they have mixed their labour with it.

  2. Does the "War on Terror" mean the just war doctrine is dead?

    If the United States have upheld the just war tradition in going to war, why have they insisted time and time again that since war has changed, the just war tradition should not apply in their case, but at the same time justifying their counter terror war as abiding by just war principles.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work