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Just War Doctrine And The Gulf Conflict

1381 words - 6 pages

Just War Doctrine and the Gulf ConflictIn evaluating US involvement in the Iraq conflict in terms of the Just War Doctrine - jus ad bellum and jus in bello - it is my opinion that the US adhered to the Doctrine in its entirety. The US acted justly both in its entering into the Gulf conflict (jus ad bellum) and in its conduct while in the conflict (jus in bello). To support this opinion I will individually address the co parts that constitute the Just War Doctrine and show how US participation in the Iraq war abstained from violating the tenets of either co-part.Jus Ad BellumJus Ad Bellum, the justness of entering into conflict consists of six primary tenets: legitimate authority, just cause, ...view middle of the document...

It would be unjust to lead people into a war they have no chance of winning. It would more just to bow to superiority and fight another day than to commit to a policy of suicide.6. Last Resort - This is probably the most important of the jus ad bellum tenets. War should be the last resort. Every diplomatic effort should be made to achieve a just cause without conflict. Only after all non-conflictory options have been exhausted should war be committed to.As to the question of whether or not the US adhered to the tenet of jus ad bellum the reply is a resounding yes. The US, under legitimate authority undertook the just cause of alleviating the plight of a coalition partner. Saddam Husseins invasion of Kuwait was unjust, or at least in violation of the Just War Doctrine, and the US sought to reconcile matters. The goal, the removal of Iraqi forces from Kuwait, was a just one and was pursued proportionally. For nearly six months the US and other UN/coalition partners made every diplomatic effort to resolve the conflict peacefully. Secretary General of UN Security Council Junio Perez de Cuellar made several attempts to hash out a peaceful plan with Saddam Hussein directly and during this time the US abstained from any military action. In conjunction with efforts of Perez de Cuellar, US Secretary of State James Baker spent countless hours negotiating directly with the Iraqi Foreign Minister in an attempt to bring about a non-violent end to the crisis. When all efforts failed to bring an end to the conflict by peaceful means the UN Security Council drafted Resolution 678 which authorized 'all means necessary' to dislodge Iraqi forces from Kuwait. In one last effort US President George Bush sent a direct communiqué to Saddam Hussein asking the Iraqi President to leave peacefully or face an international conflict. In the communiqué the President Bush wrote:Mr. President:We Stand at the brink of war between Iraq and the world. This is a war that began with your invasion of Kuwait; this is a war that can be ended only by Iraq's full and unconditional compliance with U.N. Security Council Resolution 678....The international community is united in its call for Iraq to leave all of Kuwait without condition and without further delay....We prefer a peaceful outcome. However, anything less than full compliance...is unacceptable.Only after Saddam Hussein failed to comply with Resolution 678, the eighteenth resolution drawn in response to Iraqs invasion of Kuwait, was the decision made to forcefully remove Iraqi forces from Kuwait and launch Operation Desert Storm.Jus In BelloThe second co-part of the two co-parts that constitute the Just War Doctrine is jus in bello or justices in war. Jus in bello mandates that...

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