Date of Award

2007

Document Type

Graduate Paper

Degree Name

Master of Arts in Theology

Department

School of Theology • Seminary

First Advisor

Bernard Evans

Abstract

Since 1991, more than 50,000 people have been killed and over one million persons displaced in Sierra Leonedue to civil war. In Angolathe average cost of lives is at least 500,000, in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) the estimated cost is over 3 million lives, and finally in Liberiathe cost of lives is at least 200,000 all due to civil war (The Truth About Diamonds, p. 1). And what funded these wars? Diamonds. Conflict Diamonds to be exact. The United Nations defines conflict diamonds as “rough diamonds which are used by rebel movements to finance their military activities, including attempts to undermine or overthrow legitimate governments” (Grant, p. 389). Smuggling diamonds into other African countries and selling them for weapons has caused much hardship to the people of Africa and ultimately affects all diamond purchasing consumers to this day, despite the end of the decade long war. Catholic Social Teaching has never specifically addressed the issue of conflict diamonds. Therefore, I decided to take what I have learned about Catholic Social Teaching on war and peace, the role of government, capitalism/consumerism, and just wages to address the issues concerning conflict diamonds. After addressing these issues, the paper presents methods for applying Catholic Social Teaching to this modern conflict.

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