Talk Nation Radio: John Dear on Catholic Church Rejecting “Just War” Theory

johndearSMAfter 1700 years, the Catholic Church is turning against the idea that there can be a “just war.” We speak with John Dear.John Dear is an internationally recognized voice for peace and nonviolence.

A priest, pastor, retreat leader, and author, he served for years as the director of the Fellowship of Reconciliation, the largest interfaith peace organization in the U.S. After September 11, 2001, he was a Red Cross coordinator of chaplains at the Family Assistance Center in New York, and counseled thousands of relatives and rescue workers. John has traveled the war zones of the world, been arrested some 75 times for peace, led Nobel Peace prize winners to Iraq, recently visited Afghanistan, given thousands of lectures on peace across the U.S., and served as a pastor of several churches in New Mexico.

His many books include: The Nonviolent Life; Walking the Way; Thomas Merton Peacemaker; A Persistent Peace; Transfiguration;  You Will Be My Witnesses;   Living Peace;  The Questions of Jesus;   The God of Peace;  Jesus the Rebel;   Peace Behind Bars;  and Disarming the Heart.  He has been nominated many times for the Nobel Peace Prize, including by Archbishop Desmond Tutu and Sen Barbara Mikulski. He works for, is a priest of the Diocese of Monterey, Cal., and lives in New Mexico. See:

Statement from April 11-13 Vatican Meeting:

Total run time: 29:00

Host: David Swanson.Producer: David Swanson.Music by Duke Ellington.

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Posted by on April 26, 2016, With 493 Reads Filed under Talk Nation Radio. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

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5 Responses to "Talk Nation Radio: John Dear on Catholic Church Rejecting “Just War” Theory"

  1. davor  April 26, 2016 at 12:28 pm

    War cannot end terrorism, that’s very true. But to every US administration war=jobs, and that’s really hell on earth.

  2. davor  April 26, 2016 at 12:25 pm

    I would prefer an encyclical on Oil, Gas and other earthly riches that cause entire wars. But that every Catholic should instantly withdraw from war that sounds great. I hope if this goes through that Catholic church in the USA will make case(s) for withdrawing its flock from the NATO monster’s wars. Defensive wars are probably just, but USA hasn’t been in a defensive war since general Santa Ana attacked Texas. Right now, USA is in a lunatic full mode of the most notorious psychopath military leaders in history, like Stalin, Nero, Caligula, Napoleon, and The Unjust War Champion Cromwell. It is all very logical to all faiths that one cannot pray a rosary while firing from kalashnikov.

    • Jozsef V.  April 26, 2016 at 2:22 pm

      A Catholic scholar counted that Pope St. John Paul II made 56 (fifty-six) public appeals to President Bush I, in 1990-91, not to attack Iraq in Kuwait.
      The Catholic Church pulled out all stops again in 2002-2003, trying to dissuade Bush II from invading Iraq. Pope St. John Paul II, Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger (who later became Pope Benedict XVI) as Prefect of the Congregation on the Doctrine of Faith, Archbishop Jean-Louis Tauran as the Vatican’s Foreign Secretary, and Cardinal Renato Martino as President of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace all condemned the planned war on Iraq. The US Conference of Catholic Bishops very clearly condemned President GW Bush’s plan. But Catholic laity chose to disobey their leaders, just as they are choosing to disobey every day on other issues such as abortion and birth control pills.
      There’s only so much the Pope and the Catholic Bishops can do to stop their disobedient flock from running to jump off a cliff.

    • davor  April 26, 2016 at 3:24 pm

      Very true indeed. Also most recent one was condemnation and appeals for not attacking Syria, especially coming from Middle East bishops, but perhaps there could be motives to excommunicate some world leaders the way they like to excommunicate all other that don’t meet their financial needs. In Catholicism the years are not fiscal, but “of our Lord”, and therefore there must be a way to make a clear distinction between, also stamp it in Vatican on a diplomatic level. If Catholics could find a way to disengage from the communist incentives the disengagement from NATO and USA Wehrmacht should be a piece of cake. It won’t be without effort or sacrifice though. Especially since the “soviet scare” is now on the intellectual level of Halloween.

  3. Jozsef V.  April 26, 2016 at 11:58 am

    Armed resistance against an aggressor is justified, within certain parameters. This has been and will remain the constant teaching of the Catholic Church.
    The big difference in today’s warfare is that it evolved towards the use of WMD for the wholesale, indiscriminate slaughter of entire cities and geographical areas with their populations of non-combatants. That kind of slaughter can never be justified. It’s one thing to protect Pearl Harbor against Japanese bombers (that’s justified), it’s a whole different issue to nuke Hiroshima (disproportionate response, slaughter of non-combatants).
    Not to mention the US govt attacking its own citizens on 9/11, and then using it as “justification” to invade Afghanistan and Iraq.

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