This Easter, Religious Leaders Join Forces to Denounce U.S. Drone Policy

Today, Brave New Foundation released a short video documenting religious leaders coming out against the use of Just War Theory to defend President Obama’s drone policy.

Franciscan Friar Joe Nangle said it well:

"How can we hold our heads high when remote-controlled, killer aircraft like drones are raining death and destruction on populations half a world away from our borders, on women, men and children who pose no threat to our safety and well-being."

Rev. Dr. Paul F.M. Zahl said "The use of remote-controlled drones to assassinate targeted persons without charge, trial, or even at least the chance to surrender is about as un-Christian a maneuver as I can imagine."

Rabbi Lynn Gottlieb, Rev. Graylan, Bishop Gumbleton, Franciscan Friar Joe Nangle, Rev. Dr. Susan Brooks Thistlethwaite, and Rev. Dr. Paul F. M. Zahl come together to explain that Just War Theory cannot be used to justify the use of drones.

Rev. Dr. Susan Brooks Thistlethwaite, Professor of Theology at the Chicago Theological Seminary said:

"There are too many questions concerning the continuing authority for a 'War on Terror,' to the protection of civilians, to the lack of transparency about the program, to call this Just War.  Drones are particularly dangerous as they tempt us, as well as other nations, to consider war 'easy' and 'cheap.' The age of drones, unless checked, will be an age of permanent war."

During this time of rebirth and renewal, these religious leaders remind us that we must strongly consider how our government conducts itself on behalf of our nation at home and abroad. 

Showing 5 reactions

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  • commented 2013-05-29 18:02:52 -0700
    Drone unmanned aerial vehicles are one of the greatest inventions of the 21st century. They are knocking down terrorists like pin balls. Their only drawback is they aren’t solar powered, yet. That would reduce their environmental impact.
  • commented 2013-05-17 22:53:51 -0700
    @steven: “…even if some innocent bystanders were killed occasionally”
    How would you feel if those innocent bystanders were your loved ones? Would you still sit there and go over this issue with a calculator to justify your logic of “less bodies”? There are a lot of moral issues buried underneath the “drones” subject, one of them is killing should never be that easy. But, how would you know?
  • commented 2013-04-11 04:13:18 -0700
    I’m confused.

    Just about every war ever recorded has religious undertones. In other word, because of religious zealots, like those on the video, people (both women and children) have been dying for centuries. Why all of a sudden does the use of drones matter? The fact that our president has chosen to be proactive in the war on terror by using drones, is a good thing. Less people die with drone initiatives. Every time we send our troops to a different country to try and combat terrorism, we end up killing more women and children with the troops on the ground, compared with drone attacks. Using drones limits the impact we as a country have on other countries. How would we like it if the terrorist were here in America and China or Russia decided to send their troops here to find and kill them. I would much prefer they used drones, even if some innocent bystanders were killed occasionally. At least I could avoid the attacks by not associating with terrorists.
  • commented 2013-04-02 16:16:00 -0700
    Well, I am but only 1, and the herd is many … I am pleased to see Americans at least attempting to stop the insanity of aggression and war sanctioned and enforced by their own “leaders” of Corporate motives.
  • commented 2013-03-30 04:25:18 -0700
    Thank you for making this video, especially for addressing the just war theory.

    Would you please check into the Doctrine of Discovery? I was horrified to find it is still active against Native Americans. I asked the pope to repeal and renounce it and he quit his job instead.

    I think that says a lot about the Doctrine of Discovery. It is also referred to by some people as white privilege. Mostly it is ignored and covered up. There are political reasons for that. It is a very sensitive topic.

    BTW, how do you like Idle No More?

    Blessed Be,
    Sister Lauren

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