Sunday, March 02, 2003

Leading Catholics write open letter to Bush

A number of prominent American Catholics -- including Ignatius Press Publisher Fr. Joseph Fessio and political philosopher National Bioethics Committee member Robert P. George -- recently penned an open letter to President Bush, arguing for the morality of a war against Iraq. Here's the closing paragraph:

Catholics and all men and women of goodwill agree that the decision to use military force must never be taken lightly. Indeed, the tradition of just war theory holds that force may be justified only as a last resort. Hence, Bishop Gregory’s admonition to “pursue actively alternatives to war.” But if, in your careful and considered judgment, no alternative can be found capable of removing or disarming a proven aggressor whose willingness to murder his enemies is checked only by his capacity to accomplish the task without unacceptable consequences to himself, then the norms of justice permit—and your obligations of civic leadership require—you to act with the force of arms.

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