War and Peace

Revision cards on war and peace

  • Created by: Katie
  • Created on: 21-04-11 18:35

Key Words 1

Biological Weapons: weapons that have living organisms or infective material that can lead to disease or death e.g. Anthrax

Chemical Weapons: weapons that use chemicals to kill or harm humans and the natural environment e.g. mustard gas

Conflict: fighting, a state of discord or war

Conscientious Objectors: people who object to fighting in a war because killing is against their conscience

Conventional Weapons: weapons that have ordinary and targeted impacts e.g. guns, tanks, planes, ships etc.

Disarmament: getting rid of weapons

Geneva Conventions: rules about war/ the treatment of prisoners and civilians

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Key Words 2

Holy war: fighting for a religious cause or God, probably controlled by a religious leader

Jihad: means to "struggle". The greater jihad is an individuals struggle for spiritual perfection. The lesser jihad is a just war in defence of Islam

Just War: A war that the christian church defines as acceptable in accordance with certain criteria

NATO: North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, an alliance to prevent war in Europe

Nuclear Weapons: weapons that work by a nuclear reaction that devastates huge areas and kills large numbers of people (most likely innocent)

Pacifism: the belief of non violence (no wars or any other form of violence) 

Peace Keeping Force: troops sent by a group of countries to act as a buffer between warring parties  and to keep the peace when the fighting is finished

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Key words 3

Red Cross/ Red Crescent: a humanitarian agency that helps people suffering from war and other disasters

Terrorism: the unlawful use of violence, usually against innocent civilians, to achieve a political goal

United Nations: an organisation set up at the end of WWII to prevent war by discussing problems between countries

Justice: fairness, everyone is entitled to the same rights and treatment

Sanctity of Life: all life is sacred because it is god given

Peace: the absence of conflict which leads to happiness and harmony

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Reasons to Go to War

  • To defend their country
  • Defend their freedom
  • To defend an Ally or a weaker country that has been attacked and protect innocent people
  • To remove their government or leader
  • To gain territory, power or money (economic gain)
  • To stop atrocities (an extremely cruel or wicked act)
  • Religious Differences/ different beliefs
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Nuclear Weapons/ WMDs


  • Can end wars such as in WWII
  • the risk of nuclear bombs scares countries from not going to war


  • Kills millions of innocent people
  • It can cause wars as well as prevent them
  • Damages environment

Nuclear Proliferation means: spread of nuclear weapons to nations which are not recognized as "Nuclear weapon states" (certain countries are aloud to have nuclear weapons: UK, USA, Russia, France, China...)

Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMDS): are used to kill as amny people and casue as much damage as possible in a single strike. These include biological, chemical and nuclear weapons.

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Christianity and War

Holy wars: In the old testament there are many examples of wars fought in the name of God. The fighters believed that God was on their side and had an influence on the outcome of battles.

Just War: St Paul said Christians should obey their rulers who had been given power by God. When the rulers needed Christians to fight a compromise had to be found. It was written by St Thomas Aquinas and is called a Just War: if you don't fight, you allow a greater evil to happen than a war would have caused.

  • The war must be started and controlled by the authority of the state or ruler
  • There must be a just cause, those attacked must deserve it
  • The war must be fought to promote good and avoid evil. Peace and justice must be restored: Just Intention
  • The war is a last resort when all peaceful options have been tried.
  • The good gained must be greater than evil that started the war: More good
  • The war is proportional: only enough force to kill the enemy and injure civilians: Proportionality
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Liberation Theology

Liberation theology is a form of Christian teaching, adopted by some Christians who believe that Jesus' teachings demands social action against the misuse of power and social injustice. Jesus is often seen as a 'freedom fighter' as in Luke 4:18, Jesus said "He sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives...to set free the oppressed." Many Christians who belong to the Liberation Theology movement are a mixture of Catholics and Protestants who tend to live in South America, Asia and South Africa; in countries, where there is a vast division between rich and poor. In these countries priests often live amongst the poor and see their role as offering practical help as well as spiritual comfort. Sometimes this has led to priests being tortured or killed by oppressive governments. They use violence for their cause if peaceful methods they have tried fail.

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Father Camilo Torres

...was a Catholic priest who lived in South America. The Colombian people are very poor and the rich minority own most the land. Torres believed this was wrong, so he set about to change it. He believed that Christians have an obligation to help the poor even if it involved violence, it could be justified.

  • The Catholic Church told him to choose between his priesthood and his cause, he decided to leave the priesthood
  • He started the United Front of the the Colombian People
  • He travelled telling the poorer people of their rights
  • His life was under constant threat from the government and he believed any peaceful protest would be crushed
  • He joined a guerrilla movement that fought against the government and at the age of 36 he was killed fighting government soldiers
  • He was buried secretly by the government to stop him becoming a martyr
  • After his death, many priests followed his example

"The Catholic who is not a revolutionary is living in mortal sin"
"... we must take power from the privileged minorities in order to give it to the poor majority. the revolution can be peaceful if the minorities do not offer violent resistance."

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Islam and War

For Muslims a Holy War is a Just War. there are rules for how a Muslim should fight in a war in the Quran, and these were written in more detail by a ruler.

Jihad (see Key Words 2): A military jihad has specific conditions. It is jihad when:

  • It is a last resort
  • All efforts are made to protect civilians and habitat
  • Declared by a religious leader and accepted by the community
  • In defence of the faith, for e.g if you are not allowed to practice Islam freely
  • Community needs to overthrow a tyrant
  • All able bodied men should fight 

It is not a jihad if:

  • Peaceful ways have not been tried
  • Innocents and environment are exposed to danger
  • Declared by an individual lead without the support of the community
  • Declared to convert others
  • Declared in attack
  • Declared to win land or power
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Terrorism means: the use of violence or threat of violence against innocent civilians in order to attain a political, religious or ideological goal. This is achieved though intimidation, force or establishing fear

Calculated use or threat of unlawful violence violence to create fear to achieve a political goal: "One man's terrorist is another mans freedom fighter."

Acts of terrorism:

  • London Bombs: suicide bombers attacked buses and the underground in 2005
  • Twin Towers: Terrorists hijacked planes and flew them into the twin towers in 2001
  • Karachi Bombing in Pakistan 2007

Terrorist Organisations: Irish Republican Army (IRA), al Qaeda, Japanese red Army

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Victims of war

Problems Facing victims of war:

  • Children being orphaned
  • People becoming refugees
  • People being made homeless
  • People separated from family
  • Lack of medical supplies, food and water
  • Possesions destroyed
  • Epedemics
  • Face death, torture and injury
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The Red Cross/ Red Cresent

The Red Cross/ Red Crescent was fromed in 1859. It is the largest humanitarian aid agency in the world. The principle ain is to releive pain and suffering for everyone effected by conflict. They provide both short and long term aid such as: hospitals, refugee camps, providing food, water and protection. Their founding principles are:

  • Humanity: Prevent and alleviate suffering, protect human life and ensure respect for human beings. To promote friendship, understanding and lasting peace
  • Impartiality: to relieve suffering irrespective of race, nationality, religion, class or political opinions
  • Neutrality: not take sides during conflicts to ensure confidence of all
  • Independence: it remains independent and aid agencies that work within the movement must act within its principles
  • Voluntary Service: it is not promted by gain
  • Unity: there can only be one Red cross or Red crescent society in any one country, it must be open to all and work throughout the land
  • Universality: all societies within the movement have equal status, share responsibilities and duties
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United Nations

After WWII, countries of the worl came together on the 24th October 1945 to form an organistation which we know as the UN. The main aim of the UN is to promote world peace and works to give all nations a voice. It's principles and aims are:

  • To maintain international peace and security
  • To develop friendly relations between nations
  • To cooperate on solving international, economic, social cultural and humanitarian problems
  • To promote respect for human rights and fundamnetal freedoms
  • To be a centre for helping nations achieve these aims
  • Send peace keepers to stabilize a crisis/ help in emergencies
  • Prevent Nuclear proliferation
  • Protect environment
  • Promote womens rights
  • Building Democrocy
  • Combat terrrorism
  • Set Standards
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(North Atlantic Treaty Organization)

In 1946, 26 countries in North America and Europe signed the North Atlantic Treaty to from NATO. The agreeing nation are committed to supporting each other in protecting their freedom and security using political and military means. For example, if Britain were to be threatened by another country, our allies (including USA, France and Germany) have agreed to help protect us.

NATO countires work together to promote democracy, individual liberty, the rule of law and the peaceful resolution of disputes. It has helped to end conflicts in Bosnia and Kosovo, as well as having participated in peacekeeing efforts arounf the world.

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Teachings: Chritianity

T: "Blessed are the peace makers, as they shall be called the sons of God"

M: God favours those who make peace. This could mean either he favours those who are peaceful and do not fight or he favours those who fight to create peace.

T: "Thus says the lord, "I will punish what Amalek did to Israel in opposing them on the way when they came up out of Egypt. No go and smite Amalek and utterly destroy all that they have; do not spare them, but kill both man and woman, infant and suckling, ox and sheep, camel and ***"

M: God is a warrior and will use violence against those who deserve it as they have committed unforgivable sins. He is a warrior for Justice and defend the innocent.

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Teachings: Islam

T: "The most excellent jihad is to speak the truth in the face of a tyranical ruler"

M: you must take actioin and struggle top speack the truth and pritect the innocent civillians who may not have a voice. You should fight for justice if somone is disrupting the peace or justice. 

T: "The reward for an injury is an equal injury back; but if a person firgives instead, and makes reconciliation, his reward will come from God"

M: You have the right to attack someone if they have attacked you first, but Allah will favour those who forgive and make peace.

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Teachings: Sikhism

T: "When all efforts to restore peace prove useless and no words avail, lawful is the flash of steel, it is right to draw the sword" (Guru Gobind Singh)

M: Once you have tried all peaceful methods and no form of speech can restore the peace, you can use violence and go to war to protect your people

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Peace Makers/ Keepers: Mahatma Gandhi

Gandhi was a Hindu who campaigned for peace. He led the struggle for Indian independence from Britain through his campaign of non violent resistance and non co-operation (Satyagraha). This beleif was influenced by many diverse sources including Christ, Leo Tolstoy and was mainly based on Hinduism.

  • 1869 October 2nd: Gandhi was born
  • 1906: He began his Satyagraha campaign in South Africa to protest against  the need for Indians be fingerprinted and carry identification cards
  • 1919: Founded the Satyagraha campaign in India to protest against deprivation of important civil liberties to all Indians
  • 1922: Ended campaign against the colonial authorities after his followers got involved in riots that violeated his beleif of non violence: "Non-violence is the first article of my faith. It is also the last article of my creed"
  • 1930: Gandhi led a march to the sea to collect salt in protest against the British salt tax
  • 1932: Gandhi fasted to protest against the treatment of people who belonged to no Hindu caste, the Harijans or Untouchables
  •  1947: Fasted to end violence between Hindus and Muslims in Calcutta
  • 1948: Was assassinated by a Hindu extremist which caused riots
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Shivani Bhavika


wow thanks for this!



Is this for aqa religion and life issues?

Ilsa Nazish


is there any philosophy revision cards

Miss KHP


These revision notes are useful for most exam boards in the ethics section of the exams. But do check your specifications.

Useful because the notes include perspectives from different religions.

Bushra Patel


this is epic

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