LONDON (ChurchMilitant.com) - In light of the growing threat from the Islamic State, "[s]pecific use of weapons in a defensive mode is defensible," according to Cdl. Vincent Nichols, archbishop of Westminster and president of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of England and Wales.
In an interview with the U.K. site Premier, the cardinal stated his belief that "effective action is called for to stop the actions and the activities of ISIS."
"While there is a duty on us to pray, and while there is a duty on us to stand together, there is also a duty that those who barbarically threaten other individuals need to be stopped," he asserted.
Continuing, the cardinal affirmed that "indiscriminate violence is never justifiable," but he noted that world leaders today "have at their disposal now methods of defense that are very precise — modes of attacks and bombs."
In reference to the growing controversy over Syrian refugees, he said that fear must not nullify a sense of compassion, emphasizing that every refugee should be treated with respect.
Last week Nichols called out the British government for not doing enough for the refugees, arguing that "so much more needs to be done."
Speaking to MPs and representatives of Westminster, Nichols stated that "progress is slow, but the plight of refugees cannot wait."
He made headlines in September for calling on U.K. Catholics to take "action" in regard to the refugee crisis, to "ensure the effective reception and long-term resettlement of these desperate people."
The Catholic Church of Britain has been in talks with local officials concerning an offer to take on a vast majority of the 20,000 refugees expected to come to Britain; the nearly 3,500 parishes within Wales and England will be asked to shelter at least one refugee family.
This is so despite a sharp rise in concerns following the terrorist attacks in Paris on November 13 and a blatant admission from an ISIS operative in September that stated the Islamic terrorist organization would use the refugee crisis to smuggle jihadis into Western countries.
"They are going like refugees," the Muslim operative warned. "Others just go to Europe to be ready ... just wait. It's our dream that there should be a caliphate not only in Syria but in all the world and we will have it soon, God willing."
According to author Robert Spencer, this technique is a covert form of jihad known as hijrah. "To emigrate in the cause of Allah — that is, to move to a new land in order to bring Islam there — is considered in Islam to be a highly meritorious act," he explained.
In September, Lebanese education minister Elias Bou Saab stated that around two percent of the 1.1 million Syrian refugees spread throughout his country are believed to be radical jihadis.
"My gut feeling is they [ISIS] are facilitating such an operation. To go to Europe and other places ... from Turkey to Greece," he claimed.
In the United States, at least 30 governors have declared they will not admit Syrian refugees to their states, with the House passing a bill that would immediately halt the admission of refugees until a more thorough vetting process is created. This follows an admission last month from FBI director James Comey that Homeland Security cannot effectively vet every Syrian refugee admitted to the United States.