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Conduct of War Topic 12 / Lesson 13. Conduct of War Reading Assignment: Ethics for the Military Leader pages 411-472 / 2nd edition Fundamentals of Naval.

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Presentation on theme: "Conduct of War Topic 12 / Lesson 13. Conduct of War Reading Assignment: Ethics for the Military Leader pages 411-472 / 2nd edition Fundamentals of Naval."— Presentation transcript:

1 Conduct of War Topic 12 / Lesson 13

2 Conduct of War Reading Assignment: Ethics for the Military Leader pages / 2nd edition Fundamentals of Naval Leadership pages 25-1 to and 27-1 to 27-3 Ethics and Moral Reasoning for Military Leaders Lesson 21, pages 21-9 through Case Study: 21-57

3 Conduct of War zWhat actions are permissible in war? Case Study: Society and the Bomb

4 Conduct of War zHow do we assign moral responsibility for wrong doing in war? Case Study: “My Lai”

5 Conduct of War zTraditional War Doctrine: provides two permissible actions 1. The deaths of non-combatants must not be directly aimed at, and their deaths may not be a necessary means to one’s end (non-combatant immunity) 2. The means used in waging war should not be such as to cause unnecessary harm (proportionality).

6 Conduct of War zExplain the two theories of: jus ad bellum or jus in bello

7 Conduct of War zHow might the two clauses of jus in bello be justified? - the non-combatant immunity clause seems to be grounded in the absolutist principle that it is always wrong to take innocent life - the proportionality clause looks like straightforward utilitarian maximize the good and minimize the bad.

8 Conduct of War zApplying the jus in bello clauses requires being able to: - distinguish combatants and non- combatants (i.e., the innocent and the non-innocent) - make reasonable assessments of the overall costs and benefits of particular actions

9 Conduct of War zDescribe the kinds of persons that fall into each of the two categories and justify why aggression against these persons is either justified or unjustified. - enemy warriors - enemy leaders not in uniform - civilians who support the war effort - military personnel delivering food, medicine, ammunition - children, the elderly

10 Conduct of War zHow does Nagel approach the issue that sometimes we are faced with choices between two wrong actions - i.e, choice situations in which nothing we can do is permissible. Any personal examples?

11 Conduct of War Two types of excuses for wrong doing?

12 Conduct of War Ignorance: a person is not blameworthy for a wrong action they perform if, at the time of acting, they could not have known that what they were doing was wrong or could not have taken reasonable measures to discern that it was wrong.

13 Conduct of War Duress: a person is not blameworthy for a wrong action they perform if, at the time of acting, they were under such duress that no reasonable person could have resisted (e.g., someone was holding a loaded gun to their head.)

14 Conduct of War zThe excuse of ignorance is available for violations of both the non-combatant immunity clause and the proportionality clause:

15 Conduct of War - a warrior cannot always know when a person is innocent, and we do not expect warriors to engage in extensive deliberation about who is and who is not a combatant

16 Conduct of War - Similarly, a warrior cannot know how his or her particular sortie figures in the bigger scheme of a campaign or war - hence, there will be occasions on which warrior cannot be held morally responsible for the deaths and damage they cause.

17 Conduct of War zThe excuse for duress is also available for the non-combatant immunity clause and the proportionality clause. - to what extent is acting under orders a matter of being coerced? - what calculations is it reasonable to expect people to perform under the pressures of warfare?

18 Conduct of War zIf some “front-line” military personnel can be excused for wrongdoing because of ignorance and or duress, then who is morally responsible?

19 Conduct of War zAre there limits on what the military can and should do to its country’s enemies and opponents during war? zWho imposes them? zAre such limitations reasonable, or are they merely concessions to public appearance designed to put more palatable face on an unpleasant an brutal activity.

20 Conduct of War zWhat Utilitarian and what Kantian considerations bear on justifying going to war and conducting war?

21 Conduct of War zWalzer claims that officers have a more stringent responsibility to uphold the rules of war than do enlisted personnel. Higher ranking officers have even greater responsibility? zIn what way does Walzer argue for these claims? zHow do these considerations affect the moral evaluation of the soldiers at My Lai?

22 Conduct of War zRecalling Kant’s dictum to show respect for persons, is it wrong for military commanders to encourage their subordinates to view the enemy as “Other” - as less than full persons? zWhat are the practical benefits of doing so? zWill it be more or less easy for warriors to act in accordance with the non-combatant immunity clause if they are so trained?

23 Conduct of War zGiven the requirement to obey (legal) orders, does the average soldier have less freedom than the average civilian? zIf you answer yes, think about how this diminished freedom bears on the soldier’s responsibility for killing.

24 Conduct of War Questions?

25 The Moral Leader Reading Assignment: Ethics for the Military Leader pages / 2nd edition Fundamentals of Naval Leadership pages to and 24-1 to 24-4

26 The Moral Leader Reading Assignment (continued): Ethics and Moral Reasoning for Military Leaders Lesson 28, pages through Case Study:TBD Naval Leadership Voice of Experience pages


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