Re: virus: Ethical War - Good or Bad?
Wed, 15 Jan 1997 22:13:52 -0600 (CST)

On Thu, 2 Jan 1997, Lior Golgher wrote:

> Animals never fight the way humans do. When they fight, they either
> fight for territory or for status. They
> don't harm each other but rather scare each other off. That's because
> physical violence isn't profitable, not because of deep moral
> conscience. As for predator-prey relationships, those aren't relevant as
> canibalism isn't
> the reason for wars - humans don't hunt each other for food.
> The first human wars erupted as soon as there were territories and solid
> settlements upon which to defend.
> Before that stage it was simply more worthy to wander elsewhere rather
> than spend essential resources on
> violent assaults.
> By setting ethical rules for wars we make them perceptually less
> horrible and more considerable. Things like
> Geneva Convention lower the expected cost of wars, so the reasons for
> them could be equally lowered.
> Whether it's Kuwait's oil, UN's reputation or Clinton's position in
> poles, the reasons to engage in wars
> are as minor as the presumed cost of it. The ceaseless violations of
> Geneva Convention by all sides are only
> used to display the enemy as a senseless monster.
> SO
> Why don't we utterly eliminate all ethical rules for wars? A la guerre
> comme a la guerre - Nuking the soldiers,
> napalming the wives, raping the sheeps and eating the children... Wiping
> out major cities and sniping UN \red
> cross \salavation army forces... When wars would cost so much, it would
> be utterly non-profitable to rush into
> one. Wars could be prevented by the most realistic threatens rather than
> arbitrary moral values.
> I'm not talking about Mutual Assured Destruction, which only prevented
> 'small' wars of becoming world wars.
> I'm talking about 'small' wars causing inevitable lethal damage, so no
> one would have the guts to fight it.
> What do you think?

Let's discriminate between "ethical" rules and "We'd like to have
something usable afterwards" rules. The latter could be viewed as
generic education for would-be generals. The former are designed to lose
wars, and are thus ignored by those who wish to be victorious, anyway.

I find it highly annoying that Israel's "Our first response to any mass
offensive is nuclear" is an example of "We'd like to have something
usable afterwards".

/ Towards the conversion of data into information....
/ Kenneth Boyd