Ethics & International Affairs Volume 33.4 (Winter 2019)

Dec 9, 2019

The editors of Ethics & International Affairs are pleased to present the Winter 2019 issue of the journal!

The centerpiece of this issue is a symposium entitled "Just War and Unjust Soldiers," with a lead article by Scott D. Sagan and Benjamin A. Valentino on American public opinion regarding the moral equality of combatants; responses by Michael Walzer, Jeff McMahan, and Robert O. Keohane; and a rejoinder by Sagan and Valentino. Additionally, the issue includes an essay by George Vasilev on the ethical dilemmas presented by kin state activism; a feature article by Tendayi Bloom on the ambiguity in migration terminology and implications for the implementation of the UN's Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration; a review essay by Gordon Hull on information privacy; and book reviews by Peter W. Higgins, Reed Bonadonna, Caron E. Gentry, and Jen Iris Allan.


The Ethics of Kin State Activism: A Cosmopolitan Defense [Open Access]
George Vasilev
A notable feature of nationalism's contemporary resurgence is the rise of "kin state activism." This essay proposes a set of four cosmopolitan criteria to help us recognize and combat the dangers posed by certain forms of kin state mobilization without forgoing the opportunities presented by other forms.


Just War and Unjust Soldiers: American Public Opinion on the Moral Equality of Combatants
Scott D. Sagan and Benjamin A. Valentino

Utilizing an original survey experiment, this article finds that the American public's moral reasoning is generally more consistent with that of the revisionists than with traditional just war theorists but that they are willing to extend the moral license of just cause significantly further than revisionist scholars advocate. Of particular concern is the finding showing that for many respondents this moral license extends to allow soldiers on the just side to commit war crimes.

On Reciprocity and Practical Morality: A Response to Sagan and Valentino
Michael Walzer

In his response to Sagan and Valentino, Walzer questions whether the findings presented tell us all we need to know about public attitudes on the moral equality of combatants. He argues that different questions asked in a different order might reveal in respondents an intuitive reciprocity that appears lacking in Sagan and Valentino's findings.

Extremism and Confusion in American Views about the Ethics of War: A Comment on Sagan and Valentino
Jeff McMahan

This response seeks to extract some more information from the data presented by Sagan and Valentino and draw further inferences. McMahan argues that the authors' findings do not support the claim that a wider acceptance of revisionist just war theory, and in particular its incorporation into the law of war, would make the practice of war even more barbarous than it already is.

The Condemnation-Absolution Syndrome: Issues of Validity and Generality
Robert O. Keohane

This essay argues that, before drawing broad conclusions from Sagan and Valentino's survey, it should be replicated. If the findings hold, questions can be asked about comparative cross-national attitudes and the relationship between democracy and war.

On Reciprocity, Revenge, and Replication: A Rejoinder to Walzer, McMahan, and Keohane
Scott D. Sagan and Benjamin A. Valentino

This rejoinder focuses on the points of disagreement raised by the three essay responses and further explains its own findings, highlighting areas for future research.


When Migration Policy Isn't about Migration: Considerations for Implementation of the Global Compact for Migration
Tendayi Bloom

The fluid use of the terminology associated with "migration governance" can obscure the intentions and implications of its use. This article advocates explicitly engaging with this risk through the implementation of the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration and argues that policies identified as being directed at "migration control" are often not about controlling migration but about reconfiguring existing and stable state societies along ethnic, racial, linguistic, and other lines.


Privacy, People, and Markets
Gordon Hull

Most current work on privacy understands it according to an economic model: individuals trade personal information for access to desired services and websites. This review essay considers Ari Ezra Waldman's Privacy as Trust and Jennifer Rothman's Right of Publicity, two recent books that push back against that economic model.

REVIEWS [All Open Access]

Unjust Borders: Individuals and the Ethics of Immigration
Javier S. Hidalgo

Review by Peter W. Higgins
This book poses a central question: How should individuals respond to unjust immigration policies? Hidalgo argues that individuals are not morally obligated to comply with unjust immigration laws, and that in many cases individuals are morally obligated to resist them.

The New Rules of War: Victory in the Age of Durable Disorder
Sean McFate
Review by Reed Bonadonna

McFate challenges much conventional wisdom surrounding the future of warfare and his "rules" point the way to a strategy for twenty-first century defense and security.

Expanding Responsibility for the Just War: A Feminist Critique
Rosemary Kellison
Review by Caron E. Gentry

Kellison's new book builds on the growing body of feminist just war scholarship to pose a critique of the just war tradition that draws on a relational theory of autonomy. Humans are relational beings; therefore, our actions must be understood within the multitude of relationships we have and the power structures into which those relationships fall.

The Politics of the Anthropocene
John S. Dryzek and Jonathan Pickering

Review by Jen Iris Allan
Foregrounding both justice and environmental integrity, this book offers a vision of how to manage a world in which human activities have extensive, lasting effects on the Earth and its human and nonhuman inhabitants.

Briefly Noted

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