more from Michael Walzer

Single Idea 23571

[catalogued under 25. Social Practice / E. Policies / 1. War / a. Just wars]

Full Idea

States can use force in the face of threats of war, if there is a serious risk to territory or independence. They are then forced to fight, and are the victims of aggression.

Gist of Idea

States can rightly pre-empt real and serious threats


Michael Walzer (Just and Unjust Wars [1977], 05)

Book Reference

Walzer,Michael: 'Just and Unjust Wars' [Penguin 1984], p.85

A Reaction

[compressed] He uses this to justify Israeli pre-emptive strikes against Palestinians. I don't think his confident assertion of this principle is justified. It is open to massive abuse. There are, though, clearly situations where he is right.