Just war theory and a thoughtful realist essay

A common thread that I have observed is how people tend to underestimate how long new technologies will take to be adopted after proof of concept demonstrations. This is precisely a realization of the early optimism about how things would be deployed and used did just not turn out to be. However, I do not think that I am a techno-pessimist.

Just war theory and a thoughtful realist essay

References and Further Reading 1. Introduction Historically, the just war tradition--a set of mutually agreed rules of combat—may be said to commonly evolve between two culturally similar enemies.

That is, when an array of values are shared between two warring peoples, we often find that they implicitly or explicitly agree upon limits to their warfare. It is only when the enemy is seen to be a people, sharing a moral identity with whom one will do business in the following peace, that tacit or explicit rules are formed for how wars should be fought and who they should involve and what kind of relations should apply in the aftermath of war.

In part, the motivation for forming or agreeing to certain conventions, can be seen as mutually benefiting—preferable, for instance, to the deployment of any underhand tactics or weapons that may provoke an indefinite series of vengeance acts, or the kinds of action that have proved to be detrimental to the political or moral interests to both sides in the past.

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Regardless of the conventions that have historically formed, it has been the concern of the majority of just war theorists that the lack of rules to war or any asymmetrical morality between belligerents should be denounced, and that the rules of war should apply to all equally.

That is, just war theory should be universal, binding on all and capable in turn of appraising the actions of all parties over and above any historically formed conventions. The just war tradition is indeed as old as warfare itself.

Just war theory and a thoughtful realist essay

Early records of collective fighting indicate that some moral considerations were used by warriors to limit the outbreak or to rein in the potential devastation of warfare. They may have involved consideration of women and children or the treatment of prisoners enslaving them rather than killing them, or ransoming or exchanging them.

Commonly, the earlier traditions invoked considerations of honor: Robinson notes that honor conventions are also contextually slippery, giving way to pragmatic or military interest when required.

The just war theory also has a long history. Parts of the Bible hint at ethical behavior in war and concepts of just cause, typically announcing the justice of war by divine intervention; the Greeks may have paid lip service to the gods, but, as with the Romans, practical and political issues tended to overwhelm any fledgling legal conventions: Augustine provided comments on the morality of war from the Christian perspective railing against the love of violence that war can engender as did several Arabic commentators in the intellectual flourishing from the 9th to 12th centuries, but the most systematic exposition in the Western tradition and one that still attracts attention was outlined by Saint Thomas Aquinas in the 13th century.

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In the Summa Theologicae, Aquinas presents the general outline of what becomes the traditional just war theory as discussed in modern universities. He discusses not only the justification of war but also the kinds of activity that are permissible for a Christian in war see below.

Aquinas's thoughts become the model for later Scholastics and Jurists to expand and to gradually to universalize beyond Christendom — notably, for instance, in relations with the peoples of America following European incursions into the continent.

The most important of these writers are: In the twentieth century, just war theory has undergone a revival mainly in response to the invention of nuclear weaponry and American involvement in the Vietnam war. Conference proceedings are regularly published, offering readers a breadth of issues that the topic stirs: What has been of great interest is that in the headline wars of the past decade, the dynamic interplay of the rules and conventions of warfare not only remain intact on the battlefield but their role and hence their explication have been awarded a higher level of scrutiny and debate.

In the political circles, justification of war still requires even in the most critical analysis a superficial acknowledgement of justification. But, arguably, such acts do remain atrocities by virtue of the just war conventions that some things in war are deemed to be inexcusable, regardless of the righteousness of the cause or the noise and fog of battle.

Yet increasingly, the rule of law - the need to hold violators and transgressors responsible for their actions in war and therefore after the battle - is making headway onto the battlefield.

In chivalrous times, the Christian crusader could seek priestly absolution for atrocities committed in war, a stance supported by Augustine for example; today, the law courts are seemingly less forgiving: Nonetheless, the idealism of those who seek the imposition of law and responsibility on the battlefield cf.

Geoffrey Robertson's Crimes Against Humanityoften runs ahead of the traditions and customs, or plain state interests, that demean or weaken the justum bellum that may exist between warring factions.

And in some cases, no just war conventions and hence no potential for legal acknowledgement of malfeasance, exist at all; in such cases, the ethic of war is considered, or is implicitly held to be, beyond the norms of peaceful ethics and therefore deserving a separate moral realm where "fair is foul and foul is fair" Shakespeare, Macbeth I.

In such examples e. The continued brutality of war in the face of conventions and courts of international law lead some to maintain that the application of morality to war is a nonstarter: But there are those of a more skeptical persuasion who do not believe that morality can or should exist in war: But as there are several ethical viewpoints, there are also several common reasons laid against the need or the possibility of morality in war.for a long time i have been very busy with projects so have not kept up with the daily pages like Picture of the Day (more like Picture of the Week) and this page with the upcoming overhaul of my web page hopefully i can consolidate these into one page for daily updates of current events jim mccanney.

Irony (from Ancient Greek εἰρωνεία eirōneía, meaning 'dissimulation, feigned ignorance'), in its broadest sense, is a rhetorical device, literary technique, or event in which what appears, on the surface, to be the case, differs radically from what is actually the case..

Irony can be categorized into different types, including: verbal irony, dramatic irony, and situational irony. Over forty CWR editors and contributors share their favorite reads from the last year.

The Death of the Moth. Moths that fly by day are not properly to be called moths; they do not excite that pleasant sense of dark autumn nights and ivy-blossom which the commonest yellow-underwing asleep in the shadow of the curtain never fails to rouse in us.

The Dark Enlightenment, by Nick Land

Post Crimea Europe: NATO In the Age of Limited Wars. Interview with Jakub Grygiel and Wess Mitchell. Their essay, Limited War is Back, published in The National Interest (August ) was referenced in U.S. Army Operating Concept-Win in a Complex World (October ).

Interview by Octavian Manea. SWJ: What is historically the role of limited wars in the context of broader. Follow Up on Usury Post: I wasn't following the comments on my "In Defense of Usury" post, since it was primarily just an excerpt from Karlan and Zinman's argument.I confess that I was surprised to see that there were so many comments and so much controversy about the study described in .

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