Few concepts in the history of Christian theology have had such a lasting impact on contemporary political\ud thinking as the doctrine of the just (or justifyable) war. In this contribution, I try to identify the meaning of\ud the just war tradition as opposed to its two foremost competitors: a political pacifism and a crusader\ud approach. After describing each of these theories, I draw upon the British-Indian philosopher Chandran\ud Kukathas to explain the nature of pluralism. In the last section, I use the pacifism of John Howard Yoder in\ud an attempt to retrace the proper meaning and explanation of just war thinking as being a strategic\ud elaboration of the pacifism of Jesus and the early church in the context of a complex and fallen world
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