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Jeff McMahan - Niewinność, obrona własna i zabijanie na wojnie (Innocence, Self-Defense and Killing in War)

"Most of us believe that there are conditions in which war is justified and thus that there are conditions in which the individual soldier is morally
permitted, and nearly as often morally required, intentionally to attack and even
to kill other human beings. Many people, indeed, accept this quite uncritically,
often assuming that war is a special condition in which morality, if it applies at
all, is radically transformed. But consider the perspective of the morally scrupulous
soldier who is ordered to kill. To what considerations may he appeal for
justification ?
What I will refer to as the Orthodox View among moral theorists is that,
while it is normally or even always wrong intentionally to attack or kill the
innocent, people may, because of what they do, render themselves relevantly
noninnocent, thereby losing their moral immunity to intentional attack and
instead becoming liable, or morally vulnerable, to attack. To be innocent, on
this view, is to be harmless; correspondingly, one ceases to be innocent if one
poses an imminent threat of harm to, or is engaged in harming, another person.
To the modern mind this may seem a curious understanding of the notions of
innocence and noninnocence. Yet there is etymological warrant for the use. To
be “innocent” is not to be nocentes-a Latin term that refers to one who is
harmful or who injures. To distinguish this sense of innocence from the more
familiar notion of moral innocence, some writers have stipulated that a person
who is harmless is “materially innocent,” while one who is threatening or causing
harm is said to be “materially noninnocent.”"...
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