Contemporary Issue: Failed States
"...it must be remembered that true peace is never simply the result of military victory, but rather implies both the removal of the causes of war and genuine reconciliation between peoples. " (CA, 18)
"No, never again war, which destroys the lives of innocent people, teaches how to kill, throws into upheaval even the lives of those who do the killing and leaves behind a trail of resentment and hatred, thus making it all the more difficult to find a just solution of the very problems which provoked the war... Furthermore, it must not be forgotten that at the root of war there are usually real and serious grievances: injustices suffered, legitimate aspirations frustrated, poverty, and the exploitation of multitudes of desperate people who see no real possibility of improving their lot by peaceful means." (CA, 52)
When is it appropriate to intervene in the internal affairs of a sovereign state?
At the UN in 2008, Pope Benedict made a direct and not fully appreciated call on the international community when he said: “Every State has the primary duty to protect its own population from grave and sustained violations of human rights, as well as from the consequences of humanitarian crises, whether natural or man-made. If States are unable to guarantee such protection, the international community must intervene”. (Benedict XVI, Meeting With the Members of The General Assembly of The United Nations Organization, New York, 18 April 2008)
Isn’t intervention a violation of a state’s sovereignty?
Intervention “should never be interpreted as an unwarranted imposition or a limitation of sovereignty. On the contrary, it is indifference or failure to intervene that do the real damage.” (Benedict XVI, Meeting With the Members of The General Assembly of The United Nations Organization, New York, 18 April 2008)
How can failed states "turn around"?
In Centesimus Annus (52), Blessed John Paul the Great makes an urgent call on the international community to develop alternatives to war. Also, recognizing that another name for peace is development, he called for a concerted, worldwide effort to promote development. This call is strongly re-iterated by Pope Benedict in Caritas in Veritate.
Related EncyclicalsCentesimus Annus
Related Thoughts on Failed States
I invite you to look around at the new things which surround us and in which we find ourselves… (Saint John Paul II, Centesimus Annus, 1991) Taken from "Catholic Social Teaching 101"
Putting people always first means protecting, at every stage and in every circumstance, the dignity of the person, and its human rights and fundamental freedoms, and in a specific way, the rights to life and to freedom of religion from which all other rights flow and which are therefore the common foundation of the pillars of peace and security and integral human development. Taken from "Holy See Secretary of Relations with States, Archbishop Paul Gallagher, Address to the 72nd Session of the UN General Assembly"
"In fact, if the market is governed solely by the principle of the equivalence in value of exchanged goods, it cannot produce the social cohesion that it requires in order to function well. Without internal forms of SOLIDARITY and mutual trust, the market cannot completely fulfil its proper economic function." (CIV,35) Taken from "Benedict's Thoughts on Free Markets - from Caritas in Veritate"
Related Speakers / Panelists / Authors on: Failed States
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