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War and International Justice

A Kantian Perspective

By Brian Orend
Subjects Political Science, Philosophy
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Paperback : 9780889203600, 310 pages, May 2000
Ebook (EPUB) : 9781554587636, 312 pages, October 2010
Ebook (PDF) : 9780889206595, 310 pages, January 2006

Table of contents

Table of Contents for War and International Justice: A Kantian Perspective by Brian Orend
List of Abbreviations
Part One: Kant’s Just War Theory
Chapter 1. Kant’s Context
Groundwork to Kant’s Internationalism
The Core Principles of Kant’s Practical Philosophy
Kant’s General Conception of International Justice
Chapter 2. Kant’s Just War Theory
The Traditional Reading: No Just War
Neither Realism nor Pacifism
Traditional Just War Theory
The Principles of Kant’s Just War Theory
Chapter 3. Critical Evaluation of Kant’s International Theory
General Criticisms of Some Core Claims
Criticisms of the International Theory of Justice
Criticisms of Kant’s Just War Theory
Constitutive Elements of a Contemporary Kantian Internationalism
Contemporary Relevance
Part Two: A Contemporary Kantian Just War Theory
Chapter 4. Contemporary Kantian Internationalism: Human Rights and Ideal Rules of International Law
Human Rights from a Kantian Point of View
International Justice in General
Chapter 5. The Refutation of Realism and Pacifism
Chapter 6. Jus ad Bellum
Just Cause
Right Intention
Proper Authority, Public Declaration and Domestic Rights Protection
No Precipitate Resort to Force
Probability of Success
(Macro-) Proportionality
Two Real-World Cases for Applying Jus ad Bellum
Chapter 7. Jus post Bellum
The Status Quo of War Termination and Its Deficiencies
Particular Wars, Immediate Aftermaths
Summary of Jus post Bellum Principles
One Real-World Application of Jus post Bellum: The Persian Gulf War
War in General: Long-term Structural Reform


Can war ever be just? By what right do we charge people with war crimes? Can war itself be a crime? What is a good peace treaty?
Since the Cold War ended in the early 1990s, many wars have erupted, inflaming such areas as the Persian Gulf, Central Africa and Central Europe. Brutalities committed during these conflicts have sparked new interest in the ethics of war and peace.
Brian Orend explores the ethics of war and peace from a Kantian perspective, emphasizing human rights protection, the rule of international law and a fully global concept of justice. Contending that Kant’s just war doctrine has not been given its due, Orend displays Kant’s theory to its fullest, impressive effect. He then completely and clearly updates Kant’s perspective for application to our time.
Along the way, he criticizes pacifism and realism, explores the nature of human rights protection during wartime, and defends a theory of just war. He also looks ahead to future developments in global institutional reform using cases from the Persian Gulf War, Somalia, Bosnia, and Rwanda to illustrate his argument.
Controversial and timely, perhaps the most important contribution War and International Justice: A Kantian Perspective makes is with regard to the question of justice after war. Orend offers a principled theory of war termination, making an urgent plea to reform current international law.


For many reasons this a valuable contribution to the just war tradition

- J. M. Betz, Choice