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Just and Unjust Uses of Limited ForceA Moral Argument with Contemporary Illustrations$
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Daniel R. Brunstetter

Print publication date: 2021

Print ISBN-13: 9780192897008

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: July 2021

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780192897008.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 07 December 2021

Imagining jus post vim

Imagining jus post vim

(p.89) 3 Imagining jus post vim
Just and Unjust Uses of Limited Force

Daniel R. Brunstetter

Oxford University Press

Standard accounts of just war follow a chronological path: deliberating whether to go to war (jus ad bellum), considering what can be done in war (jus in bello), and determining the responsibilities after war’s end (jus post bellum). This chapter challenges the chronological timeline by arguing that understanding jus post vim, or the justice after limited force, is paramount to discerning the just and unjust uses of limited force. Placing the emphasis on the post-force environment first shifts the focus onto the achievable ends, which then recalibrates the goals, and, by consequence, the means employed to achieve them. The chapter thus begins by distinguishing between jus post bellum and jus post vim, with one of the main differences being that the latter is necessarily a form of truncated victory. This circumscribed nature of victory has ethical implications insofar as many of the lofty goals sometimes associated with jus post bellum (rehabilitation, regime change, war crimes trials, etc.) are not feasible objectives of using limited force. Drawing on the classical just war doctrine’s emphasis on the pursuit of order and justice, the chapter identifies the re-establishment and containment principles as markers of moral truncated victory and the committed pursuit of long-term peace. These jus post vim principles reflect the heavy moral lifting that diplomatic measures play in the pursuit of peace once truncated victory is achieved. The chapter concludes by linking jus post vim to conciliation, inviting deeper engagement with non-Western peace practices and traditions.

Keywords:   jus post vim, just post bellum, victory, peace, just war, order, justice, conciliation

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