Thursday, December 17, 2009

Walzer on Obama on Just War Theory

Michael Walzer listened to Obama's Oslo speech through the important filter of Just War theory, on which Walzer is probably the world's most important expert.

I haven't yet found the time to read Obama's speech (or watch it on Youtube). Still, Walzer is an important writer, Obama is the powerful man, so listening to the one on the other won't be a waste of your time.

h/t Normblog.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Walzer may be the world’s most important expert on just war theory, but I don’t see much evidence that he is an expert in its practical application. His (and Margalit’s) argument in Israel: Civilians & Combatants omits vital parts of the current international conventions i.e. that foreseeing the death of non-combatants as an effect of aiming at a legitimate target is not prohibited. In fact they seem to argue against the Geneva Convention without acknowledging that they are doing so.
As for Obama, it’s funny how Niebuhr only come out when Obama feels a need to protect his right flank. Wasting 3 months of decent weather for transporting troops only to arrive at the decision your hand-picked commander was arguing for from the beginning isn’t encouraging.