Just War Theory Vietnam War

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To assess the validity of U.S involvement in the Vietnam War, the Just War Theory is used as a brief framework coupled with major scholarly discussions concerning the Vietnam War. Philosophers and historians over the centuries have shaped the Just War Theory to help give a clear cut guide to justifying International Wars with a significant formulation contributed by Saint Thomas Aquinas in his work Summa Theologicae. According to the theory, the moral justification of every international war is divided into two parts: the reasons for fighting and the means adopted in the actual fighting (Walzer, 2001). The first judgement which is known as jus ad bellum, also as justice of war, is used to assess whether a war is just or unjust. The second judgment which is the jus in bello, also as justice in war, outlines how war is conducted properly. Thomas Aquinas explained that "Jus ad bellum does not imply jus in bello and jus in bello does not …show more content…
went to war for a just cause and whether its intentions were morally correct. U.S has to fulfill all four principles of the jus ad bellum before its involvement in the Vietnam War can be qualified as just. According to the Just War Theory, only preemptive strikes, specific international interventions and retaliations of aggression qualify as being a just cause for any war. U.S involvement in the Vietnam has been keenly attributed to its political labors to restrain the proliferation of communism throughout Southeast Asia (Pike, 1996; Walzer, 2001).This shows that the primary cause of the war was for a political interest, which according to the Just War Theory, is unjust. The dispute was between South and North Vietnam. It raged into a war when U.S. first got involved, thus, Viet Cong's attacks could rather be justified as a justifiable retaliation in response of U.S aggression and not the

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