Ethics and Weapons of Mass Destruction Essay; ..
Subject: The Ethics Of War Essay Research Paper
Now, that is, I believe, a true and uncolored description of the system, as it is in its nakedness, as it is in its real self, under which we are content to live. It is not an exaggerated description—there is not a touch in the picture with which you can fairly quarrel. It is true that the real logic of the system does not yet prevail. It is true that a certain number of things may for a time modify and restrain the final triumphs of the majority. In some parliamentary countries, the majority tends to be more composite in its character than with us, and therefore tumbles more easily to pieces. On the other hand, with us at least, whatever it may be in some other countries that have parliaments, minorities may rend the air and reach the skies, if they can, with their cries and complaints, and so to a certain extent may raise difficulties—a method of warfare in which all minorities grow more or less skillful by practice—in the path of the majority; with us also there still exists happily a friendlier, more genial spirit between all parts of the people than prevails in other countries. Thanks to the fact that the great serpent of bureaucracy holds us as yet less closely in its folds; thanks to the still lingering traditions of self-help and voluntary work; thanks to the good humor and love of fair play, which is to some extent nursed by our fellowship in the same games that all classes love—games that I think have redeemed some part of the politician's mistakes—the rule of the majority is with us as yet more tempered, less violent and unscrupulous, than it is in some other countries; but give their full weight to all these modifying influences, which restrain our system of the conquering and the conquered races from finding its full development—still they do not alter the main, the essential fact, that we are content to live under a system that vests the rights of citizenship, the share in the common country, the ownership of body, faculties, and property, and to some extent, the ownership of mind and soul, of, say, two-fifths of the nation in the hands of the three-fifths. Such is the system in which we think it right and self-respecting to acquiesce—a system which, in the case of every two men out of five, wipes out at a stroke, so far as the duties of citizenship are concerned, and even to a large extent as regards their personal relations, all the higher part of their nature, their judgment, conscience, will—treating them as degraded criminals, who, for some unrecorded offense have deserved to forfeit all the great natural rights, and to lose their true rank as men. They tell us that nowadays men are not punished for their opinions. They succeed in forgetting, I suppose, the case of every two men out five.
Deterrence or Disarmament?: The Ethics of Nuclear Warfare
"In the past, those who no longer subscribed to thevalues of the dominant culture were held in check by the myththat the state possessed a monopoly on coercive force. This mythhas undergone continual erosion since the end of World War IIowing to the success of the strategy of guerrilla warfare, asfirst revealed to the French in Indochina, and later conclusivelydemonstrated in Algeria. Suffering as we do from what SenatorFulbright has called 'the arrogance of power,' we have beenextremely slow to learn the lesson in Vietnam, although we nowrealize that war is political and cannot be won by militarymeans. It is apparent that the myth of the monopoly of coerciveforce as it was first qualified in the civil rights conflict inthe South, then in our urban ghettos, next on the streets ofChicago, and now on our college campuses has lost its hold overthe minds of Americans. The technology of guerrilla warfare hasmade it evident that, while the state can win battles, it cannotwin wars of values. Coercive force which is centered in themodern state cannot be sustained in the face of the activeresistance of some 10 percent of the population unless the stateis willing to embark on a deliberate policy of genocide directedagainst the value dissident groups. The factor that sustained themyth of coercive force in the past was the acceptance of a commonvalue system. Whether the latter exists is questionable in themodern nation-state." [p.p. 59-60]