The Monist 57 (4):461-488 (1973)

In its classic form the doctrine of the just war, whether enunciated by theological or secular theorists, had two main components: the jus ad bellum, which defined the morally acceptable limits within which a sovereign could and even should go to war, and the jus in bello, which set limits to the conduct of war. By contrast, today the problem of just limitation of war is addressed almost entirely by legal and theoretical attempts to refine the jus in bello, while there exists only a morally truncated and politically ineffective jus ad bellum. What is the contemporary status of the jus ad bellum and what makes it politically and morally inadequate are the issues I wish to address directly in this paper. Indirectly, however, I wish to speak to more fundamental questions: what are the ingredients of a moral doctrine limiting resort to war, and what is required for this to be politically workable as well? The final goal, which is far beyond the scope of this paper, is to reconstruct for our own time a doctrine on the just limitation of war which would restore the dual thrust of just war doctrine in its classic form.
Keywords Analytic Philosophy  Contemporary Philosophy  General Interest  Philosophy of Mind  Philosophy of Science
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ISBN(s) 0026-9662
DOI 10.5840/monist197357422
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