Pope Benedict XVI said Sunday that wars were "useless slaughters" that brought hell to Earth, his latest in a string of peace appeals issued this year.
Benedict called for an end to all wars in this small mountain town in Italy's Veneto region, where he has been vacationing. He recalled that 90 years ago - on Aug. 1, 1917 - his predecessor Pope Benedict XV urged a similar end to the first World War, then ravaging this part of northern Italy.
"While this inhuman conflict raged, the pope had the courage to affirm that it was a 'useless slaughter,"' Benedict said. "These words - 'useless slaughter' - contained a fuller prophetic value that can be applied to so many other conflicts that have cut off countless human lives."