Just War Theory Essay Example

Topics: Laws of war, Jus ad bellum, Just War Pages: 1 (280 words) Published: May 12, 2013
Just war theory

Just War theory demands that for war to be justified a state must fulfil each of the following 6 requirements: (1) Just cause, (2) Legitimate Authority, (3) Right intention, (4) Likelihood of Success, (5) Proportionality and (6) Last resort. Just war theory was developed by theologians Augustine and Aquinas. This will be further discussed in the essay. In addition to this these 6 requirements can be categorised in 3 parts – Jus ad bellum, Jus in bello and Jus post bellum The first legitimate reason for war ‘Just cause’. This can be defined as – only go to war if there is a good enough reason. If the isn’t other than personal beneficial gain then it’s totally unacceptable as Augustine quotes Aquinas “At just war is wont be described as one that avenges wrong, when a nation or state has to be punished for refusing to make amends”. Only go to war if amends can’t be made. In addition to this Francisco Vitoria said “A nation has ‘just cause’ when it tries to correct a violation of rights”. So both Francisco and Aquinas agree that if an agreement can’t be made then it’s acceptable or the violation rights are being abused. An example to of this would be Saddam Hussain’s regime in Iraq because it premises to confront real and certain danger this would fall in to the category of ‘Jus ad bellum’ as it has to be thought of beforehand before going to war The second appropriate reason for conflict is ‘legitimate authority’. Legitimate authority in terms of just war theory is that, for there to be declared war the highest authority in charge must announce the decision
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