Accession Number : ADA114454

Title :   Individual Responsibility in War.

Descriptive Note : Final rept.,


Personal Author(s) : Bellene,Stephen

PDF Url : ADA114454

Report Date : 28 Apr 1982

Pagination or Media Count : 120

Abstract : This thesis examines individual responsibility in war and the factors that affect such responsibility. This inquiry is from a philosophical perspective and begins by examining the general idea of responsibility. Through analysis, this broad term is refined and clarified. The factors that affect such responsibility are then reviewed. These include insanity, coercion, ignorance, mistake, accident, and negligence. Given that these conditions affect individual responsibility, exactly when these conditions obtain are examined. After this general treatment of responsibility, the scope is narrowed to the agent as combatant and combatant is defined. Also introduced are the rules of war (they are often taken as the standard by which one's actions in war are judged). Further discussion focuses on how the previously discussed factors (coercion, insanity, etc.,) affect individual responsibility within the context of war. In addition, the pleas of superior orders and military necessity are also considered. The conclusion argued for is that, just as an individual may be fully responsible for his actions, so, too, may a soldier be fully responsible. However, just as the ordinary agent may be less than fully responsible (based on a variety of factors), the combatant's responsibility may also be affected. (Author)

Descriptors :   *Warfare, *Ethics, *Roles(Behavior), *Decision making, Military personnel, Jobs, Combat support, Military law, Regulations, Judgement(Psychology), Mental disorders, Coercive force, Comprehension, Errors, Accidents, Regulations, Military requirements, Theses

Subject Categories : Sociology and Law
      Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics

Distribution Statement : APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE