Arab bishops back use of 'proportionate force' to protect minorities [CC]


The Conference of Latin Bishops of the Arab Regions has issued a statement in support of the international community’s use of “proportionate force” to protect ethnic and religious …



Does anyone have any idea what they mean by proportionate force?


It means however many minorities are killed, the same proportion of militants should be killed compared to the total sum of their population -no more, no less.


I think that these bishops are absolutely right that proportionate force would be justified to protect minorities.


I don’t think anyone, including the bishops, can answer that question in specific detail, unless they are present on the battlefield. The proportional force needed to stop a column of armored vehicles is different than for a handful of under-fed and under-equipped infantry we encountered in the invasion of Iraq.

I think these Islamic extremists are similar the the Japanese soldiers in WWII who almost never surrendered. I recently saw a program on the History Channel where an American colonel instructed the troops, that if you have to take a personal risk to take a prisoner, don’t take any. The catechism says that you have a greater obligation for your own life than for the life of an opponent in war.


Thanks so much! I understand that one cannot know precisely what a proportionate force would be; I just wonder what the criteria are.


:ouch: No, no it doesn’t. It means that the force used needs to be in proportion to the threat and to justly eliminating the threat. Example- City held by terrorists, terrorists doing bad things to the populace of the city. Non-proportional force- sending in 100 unarmed Canadian police officers to politely ask the terrorists to stop and at the other extreme carpet bombing the city. Proportional force- enough force to neutralize the terrorists and their actions with minimal loss of life on all sides.


The above sounds right, but I tried to search whether or not there is such a thing as a non-lethal sleeping gas which can be used in battle with no results …
Anyway, it seems to me that such a gas would be the answer to any 21st century crusade;

Then we can pick up the bodies and burn them all at the stake before they catch Ebola. :stuck_out_tongue:



-Your Ebola comment is offensive
-Gas isn’t a very effective battlefield weapon. It’s easily countered, too reliant on weather conditions, can’t really be controlled after it’s release, and is too localized


It was intended to be sarcastically facetious …
Isn’t it interesting that our Church is so concerned with a question basically of overkill, yet apparently looked the other way in the past at the execution of captive heretics?



You are correct that the question of proportionality is wrt “overkill” rather than inadequate response, but the execution of heretics is not a good example of “overkill” ignored by the Church.


Who said the Church is just worried about overkill? Perhaps the Bishops are also concerned with the lack of any real response. Also, assuming for the sake of argument your contention about heretics, how exactly does that invalidate the Church’s current concerns?


Yes, you’re right and I didn’t really mean that about the heretics (just said it to counter the response to my clowning comments);
However, the truth is that I do believe that our Catholic Church is too restrictive on us in a circumstance where every other one of us believes we’re in combat with the devil.

Interestingly I tried to find some words that say that we can basically crush the devil, but there was only mention of how Lucifer was once good except that God expelled him from Heaven because he wanted to be equal with God …
The desire of ISIS to destroy Rome and the Pope seems to me to be an extension of the reason Lucifer fell from God’s grace.

Anyway, I just believe that ISIS is an evil entity and that our Catholic Church should give us a free hand to eliminate evil however we find it necessary and can.



How about tranquilizer shooting drones…? Could we then burn them at the steak? Or possibly burning them as steaks would be over doing it, in which case they could be done medium rare. :smiley:

…:shrug: I don’t know where I’m going with this. :stuck_out_tongue:

But seriously I agree with the fact that we’re dealing with something very evil here. I wouldn’t be opposed to catching them either dead or alive.


:blush: :wink: :thumbsup:


DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit