Tuesday, September 06, 2011

Senator Objects To Army's Suspension of "Just War" Instruction

As previously reported, after complaints surfaced in July, the Air Force removed from its training module for missile officers a mandatory session led by chaplains discussing St. Augustine's Just War Theory. Now Texas Sen. John Cornyn has written the Secretary of the Air Force (full text of letter) expressing concern that the instruction has been suspended.  He wrote in part:
Our military services, like our nation, are comprised of people representing all faiths.
However, that fact does not preclude military chaplains from teaching a course on just war theory – a theory that has been a part of moral philosophy and the law of war for centuries – merely because it has historically been predicated on religious texts.
Moreover, suspending a course like this because of references to religious texts misinterprets the First Amendment. Although our Founding Fathers rightly included language in the Constitution that precludes the Federal government from establishing an official religion, this language does not, as some have argued, protect them from exposure to religious references.