Spending enormous sums to produce ever new types of weapons impedes efforts to aid needy populations;”° it thwarts the development of peoples. Over- armament multiplies reasons for conflict and increases the danger of escalation.


23 i6 The production and the sale of arms affect the common good of

nations and of the international community. Hence public authorities have the right and duty to regulate them. The short-term pursuit of private or collective interests cannot legitimate undertakings that promote violence and conflict among nations and compromise the international juridical order.

2538, 1938

2317 Injustice, excessive economic or social inequalities, envy,

distrust and pride raging among men and nations constantly threaten peace and cause wars. Everything done to overcome these 1941 disorders contributes to building up peace and avoiding war: Insofar as men are sinners, the threat of war hangs over them and will so continue until Christ comes again; but insofar as they can vanquish sin by coming together in charity, violence itself will be vanquished and these words will be fulfilled: ‘they shall beat their swords into ploughshares, and their spears into pruning hooks; nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.”


2318 ‘In [God’s] hand is the l~fe of every living thing and the breath of all mankind’ (Job 12:10).

2319 Every human l~fe,from the moment of conception until death, is sacred because the human person has been willed for its own sake in the image and likeness of the living and holy God.

2320 The murder of a human being is gravely contrary to the dignity of the

person and the holiness of the Creator.

2321 The prohibition of murder does not abrogate the right to render an unjust aggressor unable to inflict harm. Legitimate defence is a grave dutyfor whoever is responsible for the lives of others or the common good.

2322 From its conception, the child has the right to l~fe. Direct abortion, that is, abortion willed as an end or as a means, is a ‘criminal’ practice (CS 27 § 3), gravely contrary to the moral law. The Church imposes the canonical penalty of excommunication for this crime against human l~fe.