Analysis of conflict in a selection

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Analysis of conflict in a selection

The Vietnam War ensured that discussions of the justness of war and the legitimacy of conscription and civil disobedience were prominent in early writings in applied ethics. There was considerable support for civil disobedience against unjust aggression and against unjust laws even… Evolution of theories of war Reflecting changes in the international system, theories of war have passed through several phases in the course of the past three centuries.

The causes of war

After the ending of the wars of religion, about the middle of the 17th century, wars were fought for the interests of individual sovereigns and were limited both in their objectives and in their scope. The art of maneuver became decisive, and analysis of war was couched accordingly in terms of strategies.

The situation changed fundamentally with the outbreak of the French Revolutionwhich increased the size of forces from small professional to large conscript armies and broadened the objectives of war to the ideals of the revolution, ideals that appealed to the masses who were subject to conscription.

Analysis of conflict in a selection

In the relative order of post-Napoleonic Europethe mainstream of theory returned to the idea of war as a rational, limited instrument of national policy.

This approach was Analysis of conflict in a selection articulated by the Prussian military theorist Carl von Clausewitz in his famous classic On War — Battle of WaterlooBritish army resisting a charge by the French cavalry, Battle of Waterloo,19th-century aquatint, after a painting by William Heath.

These no longer regarded war as a rational instrument of state policy. The theorists held that war, in its modern, total form, if still conceived as a national state instrument, should be undertaken only if the most vital interests of the state, touching upon its very survival, are concerned.

Otherwise, warfare serves broad ideologies and not the more narrowly defined interests of a sovereign or a nation. Some theoreticians have gone even further, denying war any rational character whatsoever.

To them war is a calamity and a social disaster, whether it is afflicted by one nation upon another or conceived of as afflicting humanity as a whole.

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The idea is not new—in the aftermath of the Napoleonic Wars it was articulated, for example, by Tolstoy in the concluding chapter of War and Peace — In the second half of the 20th century it gained new currency in peace research, a contemporary form of theorizing that combines analysis of the origins of warfare with a strong normative element aiming at its prevention.

Peace research concentrates on two areas: World War II and the subsequent evolution of weapons of mass destruction made the task of understanding the nature of war even more urgent.

On the one hand, war had become an intractable social phenomenon, the elimination of which seemed to be an essential precondition for the survival of mankind. On the other hand, the use of war as an instrument of policy was calculated in an unprecedented manner by the nuclear superpowers, the United States and the Soviet Union.

War also remained a stark but rational instrumentality in certain more limited conflicts, such as those between Israel and the Arab nations. Thinking about war, consequently, became increasingly more differentiated because it had to answer questions related to very different types of conflict.

National Archives and Records Administration Clausewitz cogently defines war as a rational instrument of foreign policy: Such a definition includes civil wars but at the same time excludes such phenomena as insurrections, banditry, or piracy.

Finally, war is generally understood to embrace only armed conflicts on a fairly large scale, usually excluding conflicts in which fewer than 50, combatants are involved.

Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin—Preussischer Kulturbesitz The causes of war Contemporary theories of the causes of war divide roughly into two major schools. One attributes war to certain innate biological and psychological factors or drives, the other attributes it to certain social relations and institutions.

Both schools include optimists and pessimists concerning the preventability of war. The behaviour of monkeys and apes in captivity and the behaviour of young children, for example, show basic similarities. In both cases it is possible to observe that aggressive behaviour usually arises from several drives: The major conflict situations leading to aggression among animals, especially those concerning access of males to females and control of a territory for feeding and breeding, are usually associated with patterns of dominance.

The analogies of animal to human behaviour drawn by many ethologists, however, are severely questioned by their more restrained colleagues as well as by many social scientists.

Observed animal behaviour can be regarded as a possible important source of inspiration for hypothesesbut these must then be checked through the study of actual human behaviour. As this has not yet been adequately done, the hypotheses advanced have little foundation and are merely interesting ideas to be investigated.

Further, human behaviour is not fixed to the extent that animal behaviour is, partly because man rapidly evolves different patterns of behaviour in response to environmental factors, such as geography, climate, and contact with other social groups. The variety of these behaviour patterns is such that they can be used on both sides of an argument concerning, for example, whether or not men have an innate tendency to be aggressive.

Two particularly interesting subjects studied by ethologists are the effects of overcrowding on animals and animal behaviour regarding territory. The study of overcrowding is incomplete, and the findings that normal behaviour patterns tend to break down in such conditions and that aggressive behaviour often becomes prominent are subject to the qualification that animal and human reactions to overcrowding may be different.

Ethologists have also advanced plausible hypotheses concerning biological means of population control through reduced fertility that occurs when animal populations increase beyond the capacity of their environment. Whether such biological control mechanisms operate in human society, however, requires further investigation.

Educational Attainment of Religious Groups by Country

The analogy between an animal territory and a territorial state is obviously extremely tenuous. In nature the territories of members of a species differ in extent but usually seem to be provided with adequate resources, and use of force in their defense is rarely necessary, as the customary menacing signals generally lead to the withdrawal of potential rivals.

This scarcely compares with the sometimes catastrophic defense of the territory of a national state. Such psychological approaches range from very generaloften merely intuitive assertions regarding human nature to complex analyses utilizing the concepts and techniques of modern psychology.Requirements analysis, also called requirements engineering, is the process of determining user expectations for a new or modified product.

These features, called requirements, must be quantifiable, relevant and detailed. War: War, in the popular sense, a conflict among political groups involving hostilities of considerable duration and magnitude.

In the usage of social science, certain qualifications are added. Sociologists usually apply the term to such conflicts only if they are initiated and conducted in accordance.

About. HHMI is a science philanthropy whose mission is to advance basic biomedical research and science education for the benefit of humanity.

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