Military, War, Armed Conflict

Jewish-Christian Difficulties in Challenging Christian Zionism

[1] In our post-Holocaust era, many Jews have identified with the State of Israel as their last line of defense should the community again come under the threat of eradication. Most Christians, especially in North America, are unable to begin fathoming this possibility. Their communities simply have not been under such a threat. The typical […]

Palestinians, Christian Zionists and the Good News Gospel

Palestinians, Christian Zionists and the Good News Gospel [1] What is striking in the large body of writing and activity related to the development of Christian Zionism, particularly in its more extreme manifestation rooted in American pop culture dispensationalism, is how little is said about those who were most affected by the establishment of the […]

Warrior Ethics 101: Everything We Need to Know We Learned in Sunday School

[1] Today, U.S. military commanders in Iraq are teaching classes in “core warrior values.” About 150,000 multinational troops are receiving remedial ethics education during June and July. The action comes in response to backlash over the massacre of 24 civilians at Haditha-and an alleged cover up of the incident. [2] Military authorities emphasize the training […]

Casualties of the Iraq War

[1] If truth is the first casualty of war, cynicism must be its last-and most enduring. Sadly, we have seen both in the war in Iraq. No one found WMDs, the stated reason for entering the war. Nor were there any discovered links between Al Qaeda and Saddam Hussein. The majority of Americans who believed […]

Iraq after Three Years

[1] I supported the President and Congress in their decision to invade Iraq. It is now three years after that invasion. How does that decision stand up? (I have given reasons in other essays for my support of the war and will not rehash them here. Suffice it to say that those reasons draw upon […]

Iraq—Three Years Later

[1] As a prognosticator, I’d guess I have about a 50-50 track record in life. Looking back over what I published in JLE in December of 2002 as the Bush Administration beat the drums of war, though, I think I can claim to have nailed this one. I concluded my essay: “In this light the […]

Reflections on the War in Iraq

[1] This is the third JLE piece that I have been invited to write on the war in Iraq, the first two being written in October, 2001 and September, 2002. As I look back on the contents of those earlier articles in light of what has transpired since then, I am inclined to say (with […]

Rethinking the Iraq War

[1] In an article in JLE in March 2003, I argued that the looming invasion of Iraq was justified under just war criteria. Some Christian public intellectuals had taken that stand, but very few academic Christian ethicists did-at least not publicly. Most American and international church bodies spoke out against the war. Starting in summer […]

Response to Reviews of Just War against Terror

[1] I shall respond to each interlocutor in turn. [2] First, to Jeff Swanson, I wish to say that he has understood what I was attempting in Just War against Terror by drawing Paul Tillich and Reinhold Niebuhr into the debate. Even at this late date, there are many-including, alas, many representing our churches-who seem […]

Just Peace and Just Peacemaking – A Perspective

[1] The ELCA adopted on August 20, 1995 its first social statement on peace with the words, “We dedicate ourselves anew to pray and to work for peace in God’s World.” That statement advocates a set of principles outlined as the following three “tasks” to “keep, make and build international peace. A Culture of Peace […]