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Why is war morally wrong?

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5 minutes ago, Outrider said:

So it is immoral to overthrow an evil regime?

define evil.

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7 minutes ago, Outrider said:

Will you attempt do defend yourself if attacked?

yes, if by defend you mean try not to die.  

14 minutes ago, Outrider said:

Immoral. 

 So war?

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3 hours ago, dimreepr said:

yes, if by defend you mean try not to die.  

No I mean will you counterattack if you think that gives you best chance of not dying. 

For me immoral and evil just mean to do wrong to your fellow human beings for no just cause.

In my scenario above you would IMO have just cause.

A sovereign country defending its borders would also have just cause. Hence they would still be morally right in my eyes.

3 hours ago, dimreepr said:

So war?

No war is not synonymous with evil or immoral. 

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4 hours ago, Outrider said:

For me immoral and evil just mean to do wrong to your fellow human beings for no just cause.

How do you evaluate immorality of a regime? As for defending, is any action in retaliation moral? Say, there is a contested area and Nation A moves in to secure it. Nation B views is at an attack. Does Nation B now the moral authority for killing every person sent by Nation A? 

Guerilla fighters may see themselves as victims of unjust occupation. Are they in the right in all killing of whom they consider occupants?

Actual situations are likely going to be extremely complicated and again, if we remove the morality of actions away from the individual, we have to ask ourselves how do we judge the morality of a nation? What if the group is not a formal nation, does it change the equation? If so who in the end determines that? 

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9 hours ago, dimreepr said:

I'm alright jack seems a scant excuse.

This doesn't even make any sense.

 

8 hours ago, dimreepr said:

yes, if by defend you mean try not to die.  

Would you attempt to defend others even if you weren't at risk of dying?

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12 hours ago, Raider5678 said:

This doesn't evenake any sense.

ye, sorry my latest batch of scrumpy... :rolleyes::doh:

12 hours ago, Raider5678 said:
21 hours ago, dimreepr said:

yes, if by defend you mean try not to die.  

Would you attempt to defend others even if you weren't at risk of dying?

3

This doesn't make sense.

 you can defend others without pulling the trigger

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13 minutes ago, dimreepr said:

 you can defend others without pulling the trigger

So, there is a man with a gun. Let's call him Russia.

Russia is about to shoot another man. Let's call him Ukraine.

There is another guy named America standing there. He's holding a gun.

Russia aims the gun at Ukraine and goes to pull the trigger.

 

How do you defend him?

Similarly, imagine if it was countries. What do you do if another country begins to invade other countries(I.E. Nazi Germany invading other countries.)?

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17 hours ago, Outrider said:

No I mean will you counterattack if you think that gives you best chance of not dying. 

15 minutes ago, dimreepr said:

you can defend others without pulling the trigger

 

 

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Just now, dimreepr said:

you can defend others without pulling the trigger

 

You keep saying that as though it applies to every situation.

 

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31 minutes ago, Raider5678 said:

So, there is a man with a gun. Let's call him Russia.

Russia is about to shoot another man. Let's call him Ukraine.

There is another guy named America standing there. He's holding a gun.

Russia aims the gun at Ukraine and goes to pull the trigger.

 

How do you defend him?

Similarly, imagine if it was countries. What do you do if another country begins to invade other countries(I.E. Nazi Germany invading other countries.)?

that old chestnut

the case for torture argument. :rolleyes:What has MrAmerica done for MrUkraine so far?

Edited by dimreepr

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13 hours ago, CharonY said:

How do you evaluate immorality of a regime?

How they treat their own, their neighbors and the rest of the world. As our cultural views evolve even how they treat the environment. Obviously you understand it's not always simple but that doesn't mean it's particularly difficult either.

13 hours ago, CharonY said:

As for defending, is any action in retaliation moral?

No. Just for clarity I am a lifelong U.S. citizen. Very proud of my nation is some ways and ashamed of it in others both historically and currently.

Dropping the one on Hiroshima maybe just maybe for the time was moral. Fair chance I would have never met my mom's dad if it hadn't been dropped. Dropping the one on Nagasaki was decidedly immoral. 

13 hours ago, CharonY said:

Say, there is a contested area and Nation A moves in to secure it. Nation B views is at an attack. Does Nation B now the moral authority for killing every person sent by Nation A? 

No. But they are (in my eyes) justified in killing enough to repel the attackers. 

13 hours ago, CharonY said:

Guerilla fighters may see themselves as victims of unjust occupation. Are they in the right in all killing of whom they consider occupants?

I would have to look at specific cases to respond to that. We have seen many times "freedom fighters" turn into ruthless dictators after the coup.

13 hours ago, CharonY said:

Actual situations are likely going to be extremely complicated and again, if we remove the morality of actions away from the individual, we have to ask ourselves how do we judge the morality of a nation?

On their overall actions and on a case by case situation. For example even though we went to Kuwait for all the wrong reasons I still supported the action and considered it moral. I don't have a problem with us being the world police although I often have a problem with how we execute.

I don't actually understand where you are going with "if we remove the morality of actions away from the individual," so sorry if that didn't answer your question. 

13 hours ago, CharonY said:

What if the group is not a formal nation, does it change the equation? If so who in the end determines that? 

Not particularly and we do.

24 minutes ago, dimreepr said:

the case for torture argument. 

Just answer Raider's questions please in the spirit they were asked.

And I have no intention of clicking on your link to find out what you are on about. You can explain yourself or not. 

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5 minutes ago, Outrider said:

Just answer Raider's questions please in the spirit they were asked.

And I have no intention of clicking on your link to find out what you are on about. You can explain yourself or not. 

https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/old-chestnut

Quote

A topic, saying, or joke that has been repeated so much that it has become boring or irksome

 

http://www.bbc.co.uk/ethics/torture/ethics/tickingbomb_1.shtml

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36 minutes ago, dimreepr said:

What has MrAmerica done for MrUkraine so far?

Nothing. And thats to our shame IMO.

If you are attacked and the only way you can see to defend yourself is to harm the attacker what will you do? It's not a particularly complicated question in my mind but YMMV. 

As for your last post you seem to be saying torture is an old joke but I somehow doubt that is the case.

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2 minutes ago, Outrider said:

If you are attacked and the only way you can see to defend yourself is to harm the attacker what will you do? It's not a particularly complicated question in my mind but YMMV. 

As for your last post you seem to be saying torture is an old joke but I somehow doubt that is the case.

1

:rolleyes::doh:

15 minutes ago, dimreepr said:

 

12 minutes ago, Outrider said:

If you are attacked and the only way you can see to defend yourself is to harm the attacker what will you do? It's not a particularly complicated question in my mind but YMMV

 

If you haven't already stabbed anyone how do you know you can?

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1 hour ago, dimreepr said:

The problem with that is that it sets up a deliberately unrealistic scenario (as it says). So I'm not sure how one can draw any useful conclusions from it. (It is a bit like those physics questions that start "if you were travelling faster than light...")

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16 minutes ago, Strange said:

The problem with that is that it sets up a deliberately unrealistic scenario (as it says). So I'm not sure how one can draw any useful conclusions from it. (It is a bit like those physics questions that start "if you were travelling faster than light...")

1

That is my point...

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7 hours ago, dimreepr said:

That is my point...

So it is unrealistic to say there may be a scenario where one country attacks another?

Seriously?

I even used the example of Nazi Germany invading other countries.

What would you have done in that situation? Was it wrong for America to invade Germany on D-Day?

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25 minutes ago, Raider5678 said:

What would you have done in that situation? Was it wrong for America to invade Germany on D-Day?

Let's turn it around. Let's say there is a wonderful utopian nation who decides that the way the world is run is detrimental to its people. After "liberating" all regimes they turn their eyes on the US which in their eyes is a humanitarian disaster. There is too much poverty, wholesale criminalization of swathes of the population and even state-sanctioned death penalties. This  entire against their Utopian (tm)  sense of morality and they decide to invade the US in order to supplant the system with a system that ensures more freedom, less property and all the good stuff. In this hypothetical scenario would it be moral? And what is it based on? The humanitarian outcome? Or the established laws of the nations?

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1 hour ago, Raider5678 said:

What would you have done in that situation? Was it wrong for America to invade Germany on D-Day?

America invade Germany? Hmm, I thought it was the Allies. 

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10 hours ago, Outrider said:

On their overall actions and on a case by case situation. For example even though we went to Kuwait for all the wrong reasons I still supported the action and considered it moral. I don't have a problem with us being the world police although I often have a problem with how we execute.

I don't actually understand where you are going with "if we remove the morality of actions away from the individual," so sorry if that didn't answer your question

The removing the morality of individual actions part is based on the framework used to establish the "just war" argument. A war is considered an act between nations, and that is were the just war argument shifts the morality. A person killing another person on the individual level is generally judged by factors such as motivation. E.g. killing in self-defence. However, even then killing is considered an extreme action.

In a war, however, it becomes an accepted element. I.e. soldiers do not kill to defend themselves per se, but they are following orders. In the just war doctrine, the soldier is therefore blameless, and the war as a whole is judged based on two main aspects that I mentioned before. A) the justification of the war and B) following conduct of war. However, there are (as usual) quite a few problems with this framework for morality.  A fundamental one is the issue that this framework eliminates the morality of individual actions (as mentioned). Other issues exist when dealing with situations outside of two accepted nations. On top of that is the quasi legal framework that governs the right to go to war as well as conduct. The US, for example is not part of the international criminal court and as such undermines the very same framework that would ensure that point B would be followed within a just war doctrine. 

As in the example I mentioned earlier, there is often also no objective measure to determine justification unless some legal system is applied. However even that is problematic as the case in disputed areas, for example. Some views are therefore shifting away from the just war framework and are looking into alternative moral theories, including shifting to individual actions again. But as a whole, it is quite a conundrum and I am sure one can spend year (as some have done) to explore this issue.

Either way, it is a deeply worrying system in which individual actions are freed from moral constraints and collateral damage is an expected outcome. I do find it dangerous to think oneself in a position of moral superiority while engaging these actions, as it makes the loss of human life trivial. In my mind, war even engaged out of necessity or considered just should be conducted with extreme regret.

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Interesting thread and some interesting arguments supporting different points of view.

My 10 cents worth, All War is morally and inherently wrong, period!! But situations do exist when one has no choice in the matter, and any moral concern need to be put in incubation for a period. As mentioned, the declaration of war by the British Commonwealth that commenced the WW2 is an example of an evil that was spreading and needed to be excised. 

The causes imo  for morality to be put to one side, would be , [1] self defence, [2] humanitarian reasons, [3] obvious genocide of groups, [4]Unneccessary and continued aggression by one nation against others.

What certainly is morally wrong in any "so called just war" is the animal like behaviour of some taking part in such wars against civilian populations, mainly female, which as we know has happened on both sides of the divide between combating nations.

A pity we cannot work towards a united world government, where individuals in all countries are educated to acceptable standards. Perhaps then we may realise the futility of wars in general, the advantages and benefits of science in eliminating poverty and hunger etc, as opposed to self interests and, greed. 'Tis a dream I have.   

 

 

 

 

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14 hours ago, Raider5678 said:

So it is unrealistic to say there may be a scenario where one country attacks another?

Seriously?

I even used the example of Nazi Germany invading other countries.

What would you have done in that situation? Was it wrong for America to invade Germany on D-Day?

 

It's never simple e.g. Why did America sit and watch Ukraine get invaded?  

12 hours ago, beecee said:

The causes imo  for morality to be put to one side, would be , [1] self defence, [2] humanitarian reasons, [3] obvious genocide of groups, [4]Unneccessary and continued aggression by one nation against others.

6

how do you know the diplomatic route wouldn't be more effective?

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28 minutes ago, dimreepr said:

It's never simple e.g. Why did America sit and watch Ukraine get invaded?  

So you're going to continue to avoid the question. Gotcha. 

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1 minute ago, Raider5678 said:

So you're going to continue to avoid the question. Gotcha. 

this question?

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