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LEC 3- Competent Authority and Right Intention Sept 17 2009?

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Tom Hurka

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PHL378: War & Morality
LEC 3: Just War Overview/Competent Authority & Right Intention
Sept, 17th, 2009
9 conditions for Just War Theory
! a war is completely just iff it satisfies all 9 conditions
Ius as Bellum (JAB)
! Competent Authority
! Aquinas (pg. 1353)
! war be declared by competent and legitimate authorities and not private individuals
if it is declared by private individual he will lack Right Intention and Reasonable Hope
of Success
war is only legitimate if it is declared (rules out sneak attacks)
! ie. pearl harbor is not declared, hence not legitimate
! no surprise attacks
! when you declare war you say your reasons (ie. state your just causes)
! this makes it harder for nations to go to war without a just cause
! you are not allowed to attack soldiers of another country if you are not at war hence
declaration of war allows you to target enemy soldiers
! this is like the bell in a boxing match (which marks the time frame in which you
are allowed to engage in violent activities on the enemy)
! war can only be b/w governments
but if this is the case then war on terror is not a war
but we still judge them to be unmoral
! It seems that competent authority might rule out revolutionary/cessession movements
but we can actually say they have competent authority if there is high popular support
ie. French Resistance in WW2, American Revolution
lacking popular support can also be lacking in Just Cause
! Just cause
! this is a very important criteria
! no war can be just without this criteria
! Aquinas pg. 2
! McKina pg. 385 (2nd paragraph)
! Bishops pg. 98
! identifies a certain set of benefits such that war is morally permitted iff it is able to achieve
the benefits
! war can have just cause even if the ones fighting lacks the right intention
ie. First Gulf war had Just Cause, in that other nations were helping drive out foreign
invader to Kuwait, even if they wanted cheap oil (ulterior motives)
! the just cause condition also affects how long it is morally permissible to keep the war
when you have achieved the benefit you have no more ground for fighting
McKina pg. 387
! What counts as just causes?
resistance against aggression
! always wrong to initiate war, and only time to resort to war is in response
! pre-emptive war is permissible (threat in near future)
! if A is about to attack B and B attacks A pre-emptively
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