Many people (including those that don't believe in the divine aspect of Jesus) consistently --and quite predictable-- use the "turn the other cheek" part of His message, but they seem to forget the violent and very proactive throwing of the Pharisees from the temple (His actions as opposed to words)... (This is a preemptive strike at the arguments that will inevitable appear in the comments).
Martin Luther King, Gandhi and Nelson Mandela all men to be respected and all men that affected change...but slower than a crippled turtle. Personally I hate to even add MLK to this list of "pacifists" because he knew that the only way to facilitate change was peacefully --as any other way would have only fed into the stereotypes he sought to abolish. I don't believe that he would have wanted to turn the other cheek to Osama Bin Laden...but that's just my opinion.
An article on The Huffington Post says we should have turned the other cheek to Osama and the Taliban. It insinuates that this would have somehow made America stronger:
"Is America that brave? Is America that courageous? Is America that heroic?
We got hit on September 11th. And what was our reaction? Courage under fire? Grace through trying times? No, blind, angry, purposeless vengeance. Not just at our enemy, but at ourselves.
What would have taken courage is a measured, just response. What took easy cowardice was fire in all directions. For the love of God, we attacked the wrong Middle Eastern country – and we’re not even sorry." (source)
This article seeks to somehow tie together a pacifist message with one of brave tales of the past (the just wars) and Bush's eavesdropping "scandal"... of course failing to address all the other war time Presidents that instituted the SAME measures.
What would the pacifists do about North Korea if they launch a missile that could hit the left coast? Or Iran that claims: “We do not accept global nuclear ’apartheid’ and scientific ’apartheid’"? (source)
Truthfully all the discussion in the world will never enlighten me to the pacifist’s views... I use real life as a model to all my beliefs (and common sense of course). People that allow others to walk on them get walked on. People that allow others to bully them get bullied. Parents that constantly threaten discipline and never follow through have horrible, unruly children. All the same things would be true of a pacifist nation.