more from Michael Walzer

Single Idea 23593

[catalogued under 25. Social Practice / E. Policies / 1. War / b. Justice in war]

Full Idea

Justice of war [ad bellum] and justice in war [in bello] are logically independent. It is perfectly possible for a just war to be fought unjustly, and for an unjust war to be fought in strict accordance with the rules.

Gist of Idea

Jus ad bellum and Jus in bello are independent; unjust wars can be fought in a just way


Michael Walzer (Just and Unjust Wars [1977], 02)

Book Reference

Walzer,Michael: 'Just and Unjust Wars' [Penguin 1984], p.21

A Reaction

The perfect decorum of an unjust firing squad might even make the crime worse. There is something chilling about an evil army conducting itself perfectly within the ethics of warfare. Better than the other thing, though. McMahan disagrees.