War and the problem of personal responsibility Cover Image

War and the problem of personal responsibility
War and the problem of personal responsibility

Author(s): Arsennij D. Kumankov
Subject(s): Philosophy, Ethics / Practical Philosophy
Published by: Wydawnictwo Naukowe Uniwersytetu Kardynała Stefana Wyszyńskiego w Warszawie
Keywords: war; responsibility; Walzer; Arendt; McMahan;war crime;

Summary/Abstract: In this article, the author addresses the question whether individual citizens are responsible for the aggressive policy of their national leader by comparing the views of Hannah Arendt, Michael Walzer and Jeff McMahan on the problem of personal responsibility. The author agrees with Arendt and McMahan that responsibility presupposes thinking. Taking into account a number of arguments, the author claims that responsibility should be interpreted as a collective duty. Guilt, however, is found at the individual level. A person may be guilty for his own decisions and be responsible for the decisions of the government, but he could not be condemned for the crimes of the latter. In conclusion, the author claims that this idea applies at the international level as well, because states are collectively responsible for maintaining justice and peace in the world.

  • Issue Year: 53/2017
  • Issue No: 3
  • Page Range: 115-126
  • Page Count: 12
  • Language: English