War and Justice vs A Just War


2. How, according to Elshtain, can war be an “instrument of justice”? Is there  a difference between saying that a war is “just” and saying that a war is necessary  to bring about justice? Do you agree that sometimes war is an essential  part of  justice?  

I believe there is a definite difference between saying that a war is “just” and saying that war is necessary to bring about justice. By using the term “just”, one is implying that no matter what the action it is a moral and right one. A war that is fought to bring about justice does not necessarily have to be just. This is illustrated because people have different ideas about what justice is. For instance, the middle east has a completely different view on what justice is versus western cultures. Justice for traditional countries in the Middle East follow closely to the old time punishments for wrongdoing. For instance, theivery is countered by removal of a limb. Obviously in western cultures, justice for crimes is more subtle but still gets the job done. A just war would be one that is fought for the betterment of other people an example is WWII. Hitler’s expansion spread fear and helplessness to each country he conquered. He would have continued to spread his tyranny unless the other countries entered in this just war. However, this being said I do believe that war is an essential part of justice because in order to establish a course of justice one has to set a precedent. Without a precedent stating or showing what consequences for certain actions are, the enforcement will not work. It is like a parent making a child suck on soap for using dirty language. The use of the soap is the war; the child now knows not to use that language, and the parent may only have to use verbal warnings from that point.


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