Custom Research Paper Writing
End Paper Writing Worries

Call us today to learn more:


  • 24/7 Customer Service
  • Free Plagiarism Check
  • Writing at Your Level
  • Native US Degreed Writers

Order Here


War being one of the cardinal facts of human history, what is to be made of it? How are we to regard it? Four broad points of view which exist along a polarity that might be termed “the degree of acceptability of war” may be distinguished:

  1. The radical position, exemplified by Gandhian satyagraha, in which no violent resistance to any offense whatsoever is deemed justifiable, i.e. total pacifism;
  2. The position that war is usually an abomination, but that in certain select circumstances there is such a thing as a just war, what might be called a “weak legitimacy” position;
  3. The position that was taken by Clausewitz, that war is a fact of politics, that war is an “instrument” of politics, a “continuation” of politics and is thus a fact of life in human affairs, a “realist” or “strong legitimacy” position;
  4. The position taken by such thinkers as von Bernhardi and Treitschke, that war is a positive duty of the state and that, in Social Darwinian terms, the waging of war is a virtue, a “militaristic” position. War

In a research paper on war, you may want to discuss the second of these four positions, the “weak legitimacy” or “just war” position, as an idea which has developed and grown, an idea that is an intellectual artifact of human history that is still in the process of development. As we shall see, key aspects of the just war theory have had a very distinguished set of advocates. But the question before us is, were they right and are those moderns who have built a fully articulated JWT on their thought right?

Augustine of Hippo, in the fifth century C.E., theorized about just war in the nineteenth book of his City of God. In chapter 11 he established that “peace is the end of our good”. In the following chapter he found that peace is also the end of war, “For every man seeks peace by waging war, but no man seeks war by making peace.” But the intent to seek peace through war must be an intent for a “just peace” rather than an “unjust peace” or “peace of unjust men”. Other writers at Paper Masters have noted that this idea of right intentions was a moral milestone in the history of mankind. It banned the kind of thing we have seen in the “Melian Dialogue.” They have further noted that Augustine’s just war theory invoked enforcement of what God has ordained as a reason for engaging in conflict. This notion is one which calls into play the notion of going to war under proper authority, a feature of modern just war theory.

Just war theory is a kind of intellectual hot-house plant, an attempt to confine something that is inherently evil and vicious, in an ethical chalice that cannot contain it. We do not support any of the alternative notions of war. Gandhi’s satyagraha worked with the British; it would not have worked against Hitler. “Realist” theories of war lead to situations like that portrayed in the “Melian Dialogue,” and the notion of war put out by Social Darwinists represents a puerile form of philosophical adolescence. This student believes that engaging in war is sometimes an ethical necessity. But all wars—because of the emotions they evoke, because of the desperation they produce, because they cannot be well controlled, because of their unpredictability, because of the manifold horrors they bring forth—are doomed to be ethically soiled and no war, given the chaos and the fog of war, will ever meet all of the criteria of a just war.

There can be no just war. There can only be a conflict in which ethics become inverted, i.e. in which the horrible is pursued in order that the unthinkable will not happen. Such a thing is not “just”; it is a defensible suspension of justice made under conditions in which there is a possibility that all justice will be extinguished. World War II may have been a conflict of that nature. Few conflicts come anywhere close to even that degree of moral acceptability.

Related Research Paper Topics

Anglo-Boer War - Anglo-Boer War research papers look into the famous battle between the original Dutch settlers and the British that took place at the end of the 19th century.

Cold War - Research paper topics on the cold war give students ideas on what to write their own papers on.

Crimean War - Crimean War custom essays discuss the war between the Russian Empire and the allied forces of France, Great Britain, Sardinia and the Ottoman Empire.

Dien Bien Phu - Dien Bien Phu research papers discuss the First Indochina War that reached its climax with the Battle of Dien Bien Phu between March and May of 1954.

Filipino-American War - Research papers on the Filipino-American War examine the struggle for independence by the Filipino people that lasted from 1899 to 1902.

Haitian Revolution- Haitian Revolution Research Paper accounts for the mistreatment of black slaves.

Japanese War Crimes - Research papers on Japanese War Crimes look into Japan's involvement in a multiple horrendous practices that have since been identified as war crimes.

Korean War - Korean War research papers examine the conflict between South Korea and North Korea from 1950 to 1953.

Mexican-American War - Mexican-American War research papers examine the war that was fought from 1846 to 1848 between the United States and its southern neighbor.

Saddam Hussein - Saddam Hussein research paper on Saddam Hussein and the war in Iraq.

Seminole Wars - Seminole Wars research papers look into the three separate conflicts between the United States and the Seminole Indians in Florida.

Seven Years’ War - Seven Years’ War research papers examine one of the first major global conflicts.

Thirty Years’ War - Thirty Years’ War research papers examine one of the most destructive conflicts in world history that lasted from 1618 to 1648.

Spanish-American War - Research papers on the Spanish-American War look into the war that caused the United States to acquire Puerto Rico, Guam, and the Philippines as a result.

Spanish Civil War - In 1936, civil war broke out in Spain between the loyalist forces (Republican) and the fascist rebels (Nationalist).

Vietnam War - Overviews the Vietnam war and topics that are interesting for college research papers on the war.

War of 1812 - War of 1812 research papers look into the issues that led the United States into war after the American Revolution.

War of the Roses - War of the Roses research papers discuss the series of dynastic struggles between the two rival houses for the English throne.

World War I - Classic and unique research paper topics on World War I.

World War II - The Second World War presents a plethora of topics that have to do with World War II.

Yom Kippur War - Yom Kippur War research papers examine the Arab-Israeli conflict fought between October 6 and October 25, 1973, which resulted in Israeli victory.