Write about the Morality or the War in Iraq.
The 2003 war in Iraq raised questions about morality.
The following grounds have historically been used to justify war.
These grounds include proportionality and right intention, last resort or legitimate authority, the prospects of success, just cause, and just cause.
The chances of success seem unlikely for almost all of these reasons in the case of the Iraq war (Dowd (2006)).
One has to wonder if the war was only a fraction of the problems it attempted to solve.
In this context, it is worth noting that Saddam Hussein was neutralized but that many were killed and thousands were left with pulmonary impairment and injuries.
Similar to the war, there was chaos and hardships after it ended (Enemark, Michaelsen, 2005).
It remains to be determined if this was the right intent or if there were hidden motives, such as oil, behind the war.
Was the war a last resort, or was it?
As sanctions imposed on the United Nations and weapons inspections would have continued, the answer will be “no”.
The question is, in the same way, whether there was any legitimate authority behind this war.
Both the Pope and the United Nations are completely against this war, as is a variety of states and other organizations.
Fiala (2008). It is therefore necessary to determine if Blair and Bush can still be considered legitimate authorities.
Even if this is the correct answer, there was still a lot of opposition to the war in their country and so it remains to be seen if such authority is acceptable.
Just cause: This is the most important post-Christian traditional criterion for war.
A war can be justified on the grounds that it is necessary to defend a state against an attack by another state.
In the case of the Iraq war of 2003, however, it remains to be determined if any of these justifications are applicable.
In the same way, no evidence was presented to support the use or existence of terrorist links which could have endangered the West. (Greeley 2007).
In this context, the argument about the terrorist links to Iran was perhaps the most unlikely argument against going to war on Iraq.
Saddam was a terrorist bete noir for many years.
Although he was allowed to take steps to combat terrorism, legal efforts were made by Bush to contain terrorism. He also attempted to reduce terrorist causes.
Now, the question is whether there was evidence that Iraq was under attack and thus the need for the coalition to defend them (Gupta (2008)).
Although there was no such evidence.
Tony Blair stated that an attack on Iraq was justified because of Iran’s weapons of mass destruction.
However, it is not clear if such a case would occur.
Other countries have the weapons, including France, India and Israel.
These states may also be invaded.
The arguments offered by President Bush to justify going to war on Iraq were not complete.
According to this argument, the reason for the war on Iraq was also “regime change” in Iraq.
Although this argument is most persuasive, it does not answer the question as to why regime change in Iraq was so important when there were many other dictatorships in the world (Karoubi 2004,).
Is this war only for the benefit the Iraqis? Or was the US also going to gain some advantages such as better oil supplies from Saudi Arabia or Caucasus.
The West may have believed that the main purpose of the Iraq war in 2003 was to end the Iranian regime. However, Tony Blair, the Western leader, did not publicly state this before the war.
This could be because these leaders believe that neither the United Nations nor the public of the Western countries don’t consider this reason a just reason for war against Iraq.
Perhaps he was wrong in the latter case. Ironically, this reason might have been more acceptable to them than their reason for going to war.
The West’s leaders, including Bush and Blair, were also considered casual in their approach to the war on Iraq (Miller (2008)).
They have ordered war like any other type of foreign policy.
They did not seem to understand the terror and fear that comes with war, which is what any older statesmen who lived through World War II and those from the military would have experienced.
Many soldiers from Western countries died in the 2003 war in Iraq.
It is believed that at least 20,000 Iraqis died in the conflict, while thousands more were wounded.
Unprovoked attacks were the result.
This resulted was an unprovoked attack that caused pain and death for many innocent people (Nardin, 2002).
Some have gone so far as to claim that there was no unprovoked conflict between the West world and Hitler’s invasion of Poland in 1939. The same goes for Britain, which has not waged unprovoked conflicts in this manner for more than 100 year.
The Just War Theory is broken down into three parts.
The requirements to declare war are jus-ad bellum. Jus-in bello concerns the rules of engagement through the war. And jus-post bellum deals with how to effectively end a war.
The hardest part of the theory about just war is the decision by a country whether to declare war. This is known as jus in bello.
There are six conditions that must be fulfilled in order to prove that the war was justified under the just-war theory (Walzer 1997).
This means that the war must be justified. A public declaration of war, the right intention of the state declaring it, as well as board, should be made. Reasonable chances of success should be present. And the benefits of declaring war ought to be greater than the cost.
It is possible to say that a particular war has been declared just if the six above-mentioned requirements are met (Fiala (2008)
If any of these requirements are not met, then the decision to declare war can’t be justified (Ramsey, 1992).
This is why the 2003 decision to go to war with Iraq can be considered unjust as it didn’t meet all the criteria required for a just war.
The main argument for the allies supporting the declaration of war against Iraq was the fact that Iraq was producing more weapons of mass destruction than it had previously.
Two reasons seemed to make this scenario highly likely to many people.
The first was that Iraq used the weapons of destruction against its own people and during wars with Iran in the past.
The second reason was Iraq’s cooperation with UN inspectors after the war in 1991 to make sure all weapons of destruction were destroyed.
However, the specters are still not finished with their work and they were not permitted to return to Iraq on orders from Saddam Hussein.
A number of people believed that Iraq may be manufacturing and having weapons of mass destruction.
However, Iraq finally agreed to the UN inspectors’ final report in Iraq in 2003 when it was threatened with war.
It would have been a huge victory for the Bush administration, since it would have provided them with concrete proof regarding the weapons-of-mass destruction used in the war against Iraq. However, many people were shocked that the Allies decided to declare military war against Iraq even before receiving the final report from UN inspectors.
Based on the above-mentioned sequence, it is evident that the argument about the existence of weapons of mass destruction doesn’t hold water.
Why the United States of America decided not to wait for the UN inspectors final report is still a mystery.
The United States also raised concerns about the possible link between Al Qaeda in Iraq and Al Qaeda.
The US has claimed that the information is true, relying on its own credibility.
It was stating the truth about the axis that links these two countries.
After it was established that Iraq had no weapons of mass destruction, the US government also knew about this fact. So the question is, “What were the intentions” of the United States, when it fought against Iraq in 2003.
While some believe Bush wanted to increase his chances of being reelected in 2003, others believe he wanted revenge on his father.
If you are not interested in the weapons-of-mass destruction, the best argument in support of the US invasion Iraq in 2003 could be that it was to get access to the plentiful oil supply in Iraq.
Although this argument has been denied by Bush, it’s not difficult to see how increasing US dependence on oil could be a factor in the decision to invade Iraq in 2003.
Christian ethics: Hitler was a distorted moralist, but Blair and Bush, Western leaders, professed to be Christians.
However, this shows that Christian ethics cannot be used to support the Iraq war.
Many religious leaders believed that their actions were antithetical to Christianity’s teachings about peace, love, and turning one’s back on Jesus.
This is why it is possible to explain.
It is possible that these leaders were able to see the mission through their own eyes or had an understanding of the ethics.
If that was true, the leaders have not opened it yet.
These suspicious fantasies typically include an inflated fear or attack, even though there isn’t any evidence to support it, and a religious sense that they are a rescuer.
These same patterns can be found in the mentally disturbed as well, but it isn’t being suggested that they were also present in Western leaders (Ramazani (2008)).
Paranoid conditions, however well hidden, can be supported by convincing and rational ethics.
Tony Blair is fair in his assessment of this situation. He appears to be concerned with moral principles. It’s likely that he has taken a rational and principled position in this matter.
It could have been anything, if that was true.
The two other options must be briefly considered.
Kant and utilitarian. We have already discarded the notion that both the Christian ethics as well as just war are inapplicable.
They cannot both be used as justifications for the Iraq war.
Kant may be able to achieve the same objective.
Kantian ethics is concerned with respecting law and the requirement that the parties act on principle, not pragmatism.
Kant has argued, most notably, that humanity should not only be considered an end but a means.
This means that each individual should be respected with strong, principled respect.
This is however a matter for debate if it can be seen in killing and wounding thousands of Iraqi citizens by the coalition.
The argument is not supported (Roth (2006)).
The only argument they have left is a utilitarian defense to the Iraq war. This argument argues that the combined benefits of war (in terms happiness) outweigh the collective pain.
But this seems uncertain.
It is difficult to see the balance when you add up all the benefits each person will receive from being freed from Saddam’s tyranny, and then add the suffering of those who were injured, bereaved, or made homeless by the war.
The long-term benefits of this war are likely to be obvious.
Some of the top utilitarian philosophers around the globe opposed the war.
Official thinking is dominated by a vague utilitarianism.
Blair had at least once used this argument when asked by a reporter in early 2003 about how the war could be justified. He responded that the innocent casualties of the war would be far less than the Saddam-led wars.
Regime Change or Humanitarian Intervention: The argument that underlies this heading will be “we are going against your country in order to free the people of the country”
Although George Bush claimed this to some extent, Tony Blair gave this excuse only as an alternative.
However, the argument of regime changes or humanitarian intervention is a strong argument to support the Iraq war (Silverstone 2007, 2007).
The idea of the so-called immunity enjoyed in the heads of states has seen a decline, especially after the case against Gen. Pinochet.
The Heads of State, prime ministers, and the heads of government are now considered to be liable for the crimes that the state has committed against their citizens and against others.
This can be seen as a significant step forward.
It will also make dictators realize that eventually they will face the consequences of illegal actions.
The international community may attack dictators who resort to extreme injustice, war, torture, and oppression.
Therefore, the borders of a state can’t be used as protection against the application of international ethics and law.
The international community could adopt the practice of aiming at the cars and terrorists, while the dictators can be eliminated by precise missile attacks.
As the senior generation of politicians leaves, the situation is rapidly changing.
The international community has not been able to provide protection for the political and military leaders regardless of their conduct (as they have adopted a stick together approach). More influential individuals are being asked by international agencies like the UN or the Hague to account for their actions.
The sanction of naming and shame is being used in the same way, and this seems to be quite effective.
If the sole motivation behind the war on Iraq in 2003 was to bring about regime change, then surely this goal could have been achieved by killing or capturing Saddam Hussain.
For this purpose, special forces could have been employed.
The West tried this method, but it proved to be ineffective.
It begs the question, why aren’t Western politicians willing to speak out about this?
This could be because these leaders realized that the public may not be ready to accept such techniques.
This is why it seems that public instincts are not in favor of the Iraq war.
It is correct.
The early 2004 polls indicated that nearly half the UK population believed this war was inexcusable.
This was due to the enormous burden of death and suffering it has imposed upon the Iraqis, who already suffered a great deal of oppression.
But, those in favor of the war said that it was not to protect oil or eliminate weapons of mass destruction. (Ramazani (2008)).
The war against international terrorism was not waged to end it, but rather to uphold the cruel dictator’s rule.
But the moral dilemma remains. Is it right to kill large numbers of people just to save them from a dictatorial regime?
How can the rights and freedoms of the people be preserved when they are being violated simultaneously?
However, widespread public approval was given to the NATO bombing campaign against Serb aggressors in 1999.
This explains why there was no public approval when the coalition bombed Baghdad in 2003.
In the end, the Iraq war in 2003 can’t be justified by just war, Christian, Kantian or traditional grounds.
Only optimistically applying utilitarian principles can justify the board.
The fact that the war was opposed by even the most powerful utilitarians is a reminder of this.
This case shows that Western democracies now want their leaders to be rational in explaining their policies. Leaders should not only present the facts, but should also offer a coherent moral argument for their actions.
However, if the war was motivated by humanitarian intervention or regime changing, in that case it could be said the operation was in the interests of police action taken in order to deal with the sadistic murderer.
It would face severe criticism if a civil police force, while serving a noble purpose, could have killed, injured or abused innocent people.
They would have claimed that the section was morally unjustified and not professional.
It was unjustifiable and not proportional.
It can be said that Saddam Hussain was the one who started the war against the coalition. However, they didn’t have a clear moral theory and were not able to verify the facts about the weapons.
(2012) Selling a ‘Just’ War Framing Legitimacy and US Military Intervention (London. Palgrave Macmillan. 28
Dowd, C. (2006), “Unjust & Indefensible”, Commonweal 133(17), 16-21.
C. Enemark and C. Michaelsen. (2005). “Just War Doctrine and Invasion of Iraq”. Australian Journal of Politics and History. 51(4): 545-63.
Fiala A. G. (2008) Moral illusions of War: The just war myth, Lanham, Md. Rowman & Littlefield
Fiala A., (2008) The Just War Myth The moral Illusions Of War (New York, NY Rowman and Littlefield Publishers).
Greeley A. M. (2006) A stupid, unjust and criminal war in Iraq, 2001-2007 Maryknoll N.Y. Orbis Books
Gupta S. (2008). ‘The Doctrine Pre-emptive strike: Application and Implications in the Administration President George W. Bush’. International Political Science Review, 29(2). 181-96.
Karoubi M. T. (2004) Just and unjust war: International law and unilateral military force use by states at the beginning of the 20th Century, Aldershot (Hants), England; Burlington VT, Ashgate.
Humanitarian Intervention. Ethical, Legal and Political Dilemmas. New York: Cambridge University Press.
(2008) “Justifications of the Iraq War Examination”, Ethics & International Affairs 22, 1: 43-67.
(2002). “The Moral Basis of Humanitarian Intervention”. Ethics &International Affairs, 16(1): 11-27.
O’Keefe M. P. and Coady C. A. J.
(2005) Righteous violence, the ethics and politics in military intervention, Carlton Vic., Melbourne University Press.
Ramazani R. K. (2008) President Bush Deviates from Core American Principles for Middle East Policy ‘, Middle East Critique (17(3), 209-21.
Ramsey, P (1992). “The Just War Accordingly to St Augustine” (Just War Theory, Jean Beth Elshtain, New York, NY, New York University Press). 8.l
R. J. Regan, 1996 Just war: Principles and Cases, Washington, D.C., Catholic University of America Press.
Roth, K. (2006). ‘Was Iraq War a Humanitarian Invasion?’ Journal of Military Ethics 5(2), 84-92.
Walzer M. (1977) Just and Unjust Wars. A Moral Argument with Historical Illustrations. New York, NY: Basic Books 52