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Jesuit says Christian response starts with understanding terrorists

The truly Christian response to the terrorist attacks on the US would be to first seriously try to understand the motivations of the people responsible and then try to hold them accountable through the United Nations and the World Court, according to peace activist Jesuit Fr Daniel Berrigan.

Speaking last week at Georgetown University, Fr Berrigan, now 81, said every war in the history of mankind has presented itself as just, God-approved or noble, just as supporters justify the current US military action against Afghanistan.

But Jesus, who time and again counselled his followers against violence, even in response to violence done to them, would encourage another way of reacting to the attacks, he said.

"To work one's way through that justification and sense of nationalism is the Christian task," Fr Berrigan said.

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