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Letters to the Editor – August 2014

August 2014, no. 363

Letters to the Editor – August 2014

August 2014, no. 363

Just war theory

Dear Editor,

Andrew Alexandra is not persuaded by my defence of war (June–July 2014). I am not persuaded by his attack on it.

First, he compares my ‘permissive’ account of Just War Theory unfavourably with the supposed ‘orthodox’ version, which follows international law in holding that the only just cause for war is a threat to peace, especially aggression. The problem with this is its complete neglect of the emergent doctrine of the ‘responsibility to protect’, which regards the egregious violation of human rights as just cause for aggressive intervention. This may not yet be orthodox, but it has elicited support from the patriarch of modern just war theory, Michael Walzer.

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