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In Defence of War

Nigel Biggar


Pacifism is popular. Many hold that war is unnecessary, since peaceful means of resolving conflict are always available, if only we had the will to look for them. Or they believe that war is wicked, essentially involving hatred of the enemy and carelessness of human life. Or they posit the absolute right of innocent individuals not to be deliberately killed, making it impossible to justify war in practice. Peace, however, is not simple. Peace for some can leave others at peace to perpetrate mass atrocity. What was peace for the West in 1994 was not peace for the Rwandan Tutsis. Against the vir ... More

Keywords: double‐effect reasoning, First World War, international law, Iraq, just war, Kosovo, military love, pacifism, proportionality, punishment

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2013 Print ISBN-13: 9780199672615
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2014 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199672615.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Nigel Biggar, author
Regius the McDonald Centre for Theology, Ethics, and Public Life, at the University of Oxford