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Foreign Policy Analysis
Debate: Is War Ever Justified? | Learn Liberty

Debate: Is War Ever Justified? | Learn Liberty


[Movie Clip, Hotel Rwanda, 2004, United Artists] [Women screaming, men chanting] JACK DAGLISH (JOAQUIN PHOENIX) [offscreen]:
I point at you, you do a shot. PAUL RUSESABAGINA (DON CHEADLE): Excuse me,
Mr. Daglish. DAGLISH: Hey, whoa. Listen. Sorry about earlier.
If I’d known you were in there, I wouldn’t have – RUSESABAGINA: I am glad that you have shot
this footage. And that the world will see it. It is the only way we have a chance that
people might intervene. DAGLISH: Yeah, and if no one intervenes, it’s
still a good thing to show. RUSESABAGINA: How can they not intervene,
when they witness such atrocities? DAGLISH: Well, I think if people see this
footage, they’ll say, “Oh my God, that’s horrible,” and then go on eating their dinners. [End clip]
JAN TING: Well I think Bryan has the easier side of the argument here, given our history,
our recent history, that American intervention has not proven successful. And indeed, one
could argue has been disastrous, and time after time. Many young people here are too
young to remember the war in Vietnam, and I am not, unfortunately, too young to remember
it. And so that was a big disaster. And in your young lives you’ve seen the disastrous
war in Iraq, and some would argue the war in Afghanistan has been equally disastrous.
So how do you make the case for military intervention? I think I would just say this: that there
are times when military intervention on the part of the United States is appropriate.
And I think those times include when you’re up against an ideology or a religion that
justifies the killing of people in the name of that ideology or that religion. And the
examples that I would offer were Franklin D. Roosevelt, who recognized that there was
great evil in the world in Nazism, national socialism, in Germany and in Japanese imperialism.
Both enamored with the idea of a master race and human superiority of their race and ethnicity.
And I think Roosevelt understood that, and he positioned the United States to stand up
against it militarily even before the declaration of war. Even before Pearl Harbor. The United
States was intervening militarily to support England in their fight against Germany and
to support China in their resistance against Japan. Was that wrong? I don’ t think so. And it did lead the United States into war,
but that was a war where we belonged. I think in the current environment, we are confronted
with a religious movement where people feel it is justified by God to kill young women
who are seeking higher education. To kill health care providers who are trying to bring
the benefits of science to poor people throughout the world. And I think that is a great evil.
And I think the United States is right to lend its resources whenever free people anywhere
in the world are standing up to that kind of, I think what can only be called fascism.
And when is the right time? I don’t think any ideology can give us the
answer all the time as to what the answer is. Should we intervene? Should we not intervene?
We’ve had arguments over Syria and Libya. Those are real arguments. I think the best
we can do is reject ideology as a solution to these problems and try and elect people
whose judgment we trust. Ultimately it comes down to a judgment question. There are times
when it’s appropriate to intervene militarily; there are lot of times when we’re better off
not intervening militarily. And it’s our business as free citizens to elect leaders whose judgment
we trust on those questions. BRANDON TURNER: Great. BRYAN CAPLAN: I’m going to make the argument
hard for myself by defending an extreme position. This is my four-step case for pacifism. First,
in modern wars, there are no wars of self defense. War today inevitably means deliberately
or at least recklessly killing innocent civilians. This creates a strong moral presumption against
war. Two, to overcome this presumption you’d have
to show the long-run benefits of war are so wonderful that they clearly overshadow this
grisly short-run cost, and you have to show that there isn’t any cheaper, more humane
way to obtain these benefits. Three, in practice, predicting the consequences
of war is extremely difficult. Extremely difficult. Expert predictions are hardly better than
chance. The political scientist Philip Tetlock did a 25-years study where he asked people
to predict events very early on and then went to see if they were right. They did barely
better than chance, even though they were the experts in the areas they were talking
about in foreign policy. Saying it’s complicated or there are no easy answers is not a good
enough reason to deliberately or recklessly kill lots of innocent people. Fourth, there are much cheaper and more humane
ways to attain the alleged humanitarian benefits of war. First and foremost, free immigration.
Do you think that the women who are worried for their lives as they are going to college
would even be there anymore if they can get a green card and come here? I don’t think
so. Do you think the people in Hotel Rwanda would have been there if they could have just
gotten out of the country when they saw the writing on the wall? They would be gone. These
are cheaper, much more humane ways of solving these problems than going and attacking other
countries, crossing our fingers, and hoping for the best. TURNER: Okay, so I’ll start the questions.
I’ll start with Professor Caplan. And this kind of actually gets at something you were
saying before, right? I mean, there isn’t a clear moral principle by which we distinguish
between those located within the United States and those outside. So if there were, for example,
ethnic cleansing happening in San Diego, we would probably feel obligated to step in.
Why would we feel less obligated to step in if it’s happening in Montreal? CAPLAN: It is a great question. I would apply
exactly the same test I just did inside or outside the country. Do we have a clear reason
to think that the long-run benefits are so wonderful that they are going to outweigh
the short run costs? It may be, within the country, that is actually likely, but, see
for example, I am not a fan of guerrilla warfare. What does actual guerrilla warfare in the
real word mean? It means you are going to wind up killing recklessly or – either deliberately
or recklessly killing a whole lot of innocent people. That’s the real world. Guerrilla warfare
is not someone going to a village and saying, “Hello. Would you like to join my crusade
to free the world?” It is showing up there with some guns and saying, “You better volunteer
to join our guerrilla army now, or else.” And so I would say the principle inside or
outside the country is the same. In both cases, if you actually can have legitimately high
confidence that the benefits of what you’re doing are so great they are going to outweigh
the short run horrors, then I think it’s okay. It’s just very hard to obtain that in the
real world. TING: I feel a lot of sympathy for Bryan’s
four points, and I think they argue strongly in favor of not going to war as your first,
second, or third choice. And I’m just leaving open the possibility that there are times
when it might be justified because you’re up against a moral evil that you can’t reason
with, that is, in the name of ideology or religion is going to kill. And I certainly
do not think that open borders and open immigration is a solution to that problem throughout the
world, because it not only brings the victims to the United States, but it brings the perpetrators
to the United States as well. And we’ve seen that in the United States with the spread
of foreign practices like honor killings that are taking place in the United States now
in immigrant communities. So I think we need to recognize the reality that if you throw
the borders open, you admit everyone into the United States, and you bring all of those
problems in with it. I didn’t want to mix the two topics together, but there we are. TURNER: There’s a clear border between them
and I do not want to cross that. Do you want to? CAPLAN: So Jan, let’s go back to your World
War II example. All right, so the United States went and stood up for China against Japan.
Now what actually happened? As you know, we were talking about it before, the result was
that the communists seized control of China and murdered far more people than the Japanese
did during the entire reign of terror of the Japanese Empire. That’s what I’m talking about.
You may say there’s a clear gain here. It’s not clear. If you think it’s clear, it’s because
you don’t actually understand what’s going on. TING: It would have been worse for the world
if Japan had won. It would have been worse for the world if Nazi Germany had won. Yes,
there were terrible consequences as a result of American intervention, but it would have
been worse. And I think the United States did the right thing. I think the judgment
of history is clear on this point. The United States did the right thing to lend its military
might to the struggle for human freedom against forces of ideological and religious tyranny.
And I think there may be times in the future – maybe this is one of the times, I don’t
know, I hope not – when we’re called upon to do it again. CAPLAN: The judgment of history is clear when
you don’t have to predict the future. That is the problem. It’s easy to look back and
say that we did the right thing; however the counterfactual which you would have actually
had to face at the time is, it possible that the Empire of Japan would have calmed down
the same way that Mao’s China calmed down? Totally possible. We don’t know. So to say
that we look back and it turned out to be better – it is far from clear that it actually
was better. Mao killed way more people than the Japanese did in the midst of decades of
war. TURNER: But isn’t there a problem with your,
so you have a limiting principle of pacifism, which is, namely, you do a kind of cost-benefit
analysis? CAPLAN: I mean it’s not just cost-benefit
analysis. I say you need to have a clear evidence of much larger benefits. TURNER: But you seem to be denying at the
same time the very possibility of that clear evidence. CAPLAN: I don’t deny the possibility, just
the empirical likelihood. If someone says, I know the future for certain, here’s how
it’s going to be: This is going to cost five lives and save a million lives. My answer
to that person is, how could you possibly know that? Are you willing to bet? Let’s put
some money on it. Let’s go and check out your betting record on things like this. Let’s
do ten bets, see how many you get right. You’re going to be wrong a lot. TURNER: But what about in the incident in
San Diego? Again, we’ve got ethnic cleansing going on in San Diego. I mean, like, do we
tell the police chief, listen, you’ve got five minutes to do this. Very sophisticated.
I want you to place nine bets and et cetera, et cetera, right? I mean, I think it’s pretty
much, it’s clear what our principle is in this case. We assume it will be worth it to
prevent ethnic cleansing in San Diego. CAPLAN: Assuming isn’t good enough. If you
actually know, great. If your example is constructed so that it’s a no-brainer, fine. But in the
real world, it’s not a no-brainer. And even cases you think are easy. Let’s think about
the U.S. defense of Kuwait against Iraq. Seemed like a no-brainer. What came of that? Everything
else that followed. TURNER: Let me put up a question to Professor
Ting: So you mentioned we have kind of a justification of the principle of intervention, the principles
behind intervention, based on the experience in World War II. But again World War II was
like 10 wars ago. TING: Right. TURNER: So in other words, isn’t so – TING: Ancient history. Peloponnesian Wars. TURNER: Right. So have we reached a point
where the logic of intervention is sort of a perpetual motion machine? We have intervened
here and now we must intervene here and now we must intervene here? TING: Well, I think there is a problem. We
have a World War II mentality. We got surprised in Pearl Harbor, and we’ve been reacting to
that ever since. And I think it’s a problem. And, again, I’m very sympathetic to Bryan’s
arguing, that there are a lot of arguments why war should be your last, absolutely your
last resort. But should it be taken off the table? Should we unilaterally disarm? If we’re
never going to, isn’t the logic of peace at any price saying we’re going to unilaterally
disarm? It would save us a lot of money, I concede you that, but I don’t think we’re
ready to do that. I think we understand that there are bad forces at work in the world,
and we need to defend ourselves against them, otherwise why do we have a country? Right?
Unless you’re an anarchist, and maybe some of you may be, but why do we have a country?
We have a country to defend ourselves against evil elsewhere in the world. And I think we
need military forces to do it. And why should you have military forces if there are no conceivable
circumstances in which you’d ever use them? TURNER: Okay I want to go to the last segment
which is the inter-questioning. So who went first last time? I think Bryan you went first
last time. Do you have a question to Bryan? TING: Are you in favor of abolishing the U.S.
military given the fact that you’re so committed to never using it? Isn’t that the logical
outcome of what you’re saying? CAPLAN: The answer is a definite maybe. Here’s
what I would say. It is often the case that countries have military problems because they
have a military. The Soviet Union was at risk because the Red Army was powerful. When the
Red Army collapsed, the Soviet Union became safer, because they were no longer terrifying
and frightening and terrifying other countries. Other countries were no longer scared for
their lives. It is easy – it is often possible for unilateral disarmament even to reduce
the risk that a country faces. And note that it doesn’t specifically require that you have
democracies on the other side. Communist China was still on the Soviet border. They disarmed.
They did not get a sneak attack from communist China. As a general rule, being better armed
does not always make you safer. It often makes you less safe, because it provokes other countries,
angers them. So I would say it is a very good idea for the U.S. to greatly reduce its military
spending and at least see what happens. I think that it’s quite likely that we could
get an outcome as good as what the Swiss have: namely, since no one is scared of them, nobody
bothers them. TURNER: You want to respond? TING: No one can accurately predict the future.
I mean I agree with Bryan on that. But I think your example of China kind of disproves your
fundamental point about how bad the consequences were of World War II. Yeah, communism triumphed
in China. But look where they are now. They’re a communist state that’s studying free-market
principles and trying to absorb them as quickly as they can. So the future is not foreseeable,
at least very far into the future, and I think that calls on us to use our judgment and not
ideology in going forward. They are complicated. factual – We can’t simplify the world as much as we
would like to and reduce it to a handful of principles. It’s a complicated world, and
the difficult path forward for us is to study the world, learn as much as we can about it,
appreciate the complexity and the detail in the world, and argue about the best way forward
for us. And I think the best way forward for us is to maintain some level of military strength
and be prepared to stand up for American principles and values when they are under attack by evil
forces elsewhere in the world. TURNER: Professor Caplan, do you have a question? CAPLAN: It seems like there’s a long list
of evils that you’re unlikely to want to do anything about. Do you want to invade Saudi
Arabia so they stop oppressing their women? Do you want to threaten war against China
unless they switch to democracy? There are many U.S. allies that commit the very crimes
that you’re talking about, but as long as they’re our buddies we do very little about
it. And it seems like most people have no problem with that. What do you think? TING: I don’t think you can say just because
there’s a lot of problems in the world that we’re going to intervene everywhere. In fact,
I’m very sympathetic to the notion that we ought to have an aversion to intervention,
absolutely. And I’m saying that there are a small number of situations, like when you’re
battling an unthinking ideology of racial superiority as prevailed in Nazi Germany and
in Japan, or maybe now, when you’re battling a religious intolerance that calls for the
murder in the name of God, as though God is ordering these murders and issuing fatwas
on people. Maybe that’s a situation where people are willing to stand up and defend
themselves for the United States to lend some support to free people elsewhere in the world
willing to stand up and fight. And I think we need to have armed forces standing in reserve
to lend that support where it’s in our interest and in the interest of humankind to do so. TURNER: Professor Caplan, do you want a last
word? CAPLAN: It seems like really all that you’re
saying is even though we have a lot of evidence that our best thinking isn’t very good, let’s
do it anyway and rely on it. I think we really need to take seriously the true complexity.
It’s so complex that even if people try their best, they’re very bad at doing this. And
saying we’re going to go and attack a country and kill a lot of innocent people when we
just have a guess that it might be better is not good enough.

100 comments on “Debate: Is War Ever Justified? | Learn Liberty

  1. 5:40 yes and the US is protected by a strong military, if you muder someone the police come if you kill the police swat comes ect right up to tanks rolling in.
    His pacifist argument only applies in places with strong law and order it does not apply to places where military intervention would enforce law and order so he is pretty much agreeing that military intervention that brings law and order is a good thing, but he cannot reconcile this with collateral damage.

  2. Wait what he said we should not intervene to enforce law and order even within his own country? That doesn't make any sense…

  3. Is there such thing as a "just war?" In this video, Professor Bryan Caplan and Professor Jan Ting debate the question.

    "Debate: Is War Ever Justified?" | LearnLiberty

    #liberty #pacificism #debate #veteransday #veteransday2013  

  4. Nonintervention in North Korea has had exactly the kind of human cost that this pacifist is worried war would.

  5. He said himself, He's being an extremist. It almost seems like he isn't taking the argument seriously but just making "the argument difficult for himself" because he's so cocky that's the only way it will be a challenge for him.

  6. The Problem here is that the Law Professor offers answers in a Legal/moral perspective while the Economics professor offers answers in a economics perspective… it's like comparing apples to oranges

  7. A big problem with this debate is that Bryan Caplan seems to care more about attacking Jan Ting's intelligence than really working on an answer to the debate. Altogether, Bryan makes himself out to be a prick in a suit.

  8. I find it funny that many people tend to resort to ad hominem attacks against Caplan instead of simply admitting that he is a very intelligent person and debating his arguments instead. I too was jealous when I learned under him, but then I began to appreciate his motivation to know the facts and arguments of his personal philosophy and economic views rather than simply adopting views based upon how they sound expressively.

  9. When Professor Caplan brought up the scenario of the U.S. not aiding the Chinese and the British i felt he lost a large part of the argument. if the U.S. did not aid the Chinese the Japanese would've conquered the pacific. And if the Japanese empire conquered the pacific, the USSR would've been crushed from two sides and in time the war would've turned to the U.S. . -this is just how i feel 

  10. war is an evil thing but it is just a tool total pacifism is very unrealistic due to global bullies like hitler, ww2 was the deadliest conflict of the 20th century, the biggest issue with any war is trying to sell it on the people some situations are easier than others

  11. Caplan's last point was not correct at all. At the very least he is putting down the ethic and morality of modern western countries, claiming that it may be no better than Nazi Germany. Any man with any self respect surely must disagree with this point. Professor Ting showed clearly a perfect morality in that war should be a last option, however to take it off the table is a very dangerous, especially in terms of expansionist dictatorships (Stalin and Hitler) who will see no military power as an invitation to invade, not an effective discouragement of invasion. However also in terms of morality all over the world, innocent people dying is terrible and should never occur, however the deaths of the innocent sometimes occurs when trying to change a fixed, totalitarian system, that oppressed and reduced the quality of life of its people anyway.

  12. this time the Asian was right most of the time. the white guy was pacifist fairly tail land while the Asian guy was in the real world

  13. the fear of retaliation is one strong forces in keeping wrong doing in check, that white guy has backwards

  14. Mr. Caplan need not worry about his job by reason of artificial scarcity. Many libertarians are in his position and need not worry about competition for their livelihoods. There merely admonish the rest of us into taking on non-dischargable debt for college in the hopes of landing a job that pays something close to a homeowner wage.

  15. The US was remaining neutral in the war, most Americans wanted to stay out of the war. It was only after the failed attack on Pearl Harbor that they greatly helped Great Britain.

  16. Why is it always whether we should intervene? Maybe Switzerland or Honduras can police the world. Bryan Caplan seems to have the most consistently principled libertarian logic. Obviously since there are so many wars it is easy to rationalize killing. Were it not for nationalist hyperbole, our youth would stay home rather than march off to die.  

  17. The governments need to laterally disarm. If the government doesn't have power to force people to go overseas and kill other people, then I don't think a lot of armed regular citizens will feel the need to start killing people or starting their own costly wars.

  18. "Nobody is scared of them so nobody bothers them."
    – Prof. Caplan, while talking about the Swiss.

    This seems very clear from their record of staying out of wars, but is there any study that show that this policy results in fewer terrorist attacks in Switzerland? Does anybody know? I'd love to see a study on this.

  19. Anyone else notice that Prof. Caplan shakes his head no at times… does that mean he doesn't believe what he's saying? 

  20. I may choose to own a gun without having intent to ever use it. I may choose to own a gun in the rare case that I MAY have to use it defensively. So, NO Dr. Ting, abolishing the US military is not a logical conclusion that follows having no intention of using it. Believe it or not, you may have a military for defensive purposes without any intent of exercising it in other countries.

  21. if you come to the united states and murder a girl, or shoot a girl for being able to read and educating women (ahem, real life example) then you will go to jail, and in some states you could receive the death penalty. if you call the police, the will show up and protect you and you will be given your rights, i think that makes a big difference. America should always be a sanctuary and if your being prosecuted then you should come here, America was founded on that very principle – pilgrims coming here to escape religious prosecution from the church. 

  22. Prof. on the right is brilliant.
    I just wish he had mentioned that the Swiss are "left alone" because they have a CITIZEN army. They have no standing army whatsoever. So, yes, a Federal and standing, enlisted military is not needed!
    The Swiss in fact are armed to the teeth. I mean they shoot better than anyone.
    (BTW – zero or one death annually from guns….)

    This is an interesting idea that we could use.
    It is made clear to all Swiss that they personally have the right – and the responsibility! – of self defense.
    They are not militarily obligated to any other nation (no allies),  so they have  no obligations to join wars.
    Marksmanship and shooting ranges are popular sports among teens and all.
    The military is organized at a cantonal, and not federal level.

    This is a third option to the false choice that was accepted in this debate of,
    "Either we have a federal army or none at all."

  23. The first proposition is absurd. Interventionism is its own dangerous ideology. By that logic other countries could very well intervene in a preventative war against us. War should not be the response to humanitarian concerns.

  24. The JWT of the Catholic Church: The CC has declared wars "just" and clearly claims this authority. The JWT is a framework for Catholics to know if they can participate in war. If we participate in an unjust war we are committing murder. We must KNOW that the war is just before we participate in it or we employ laxism (strictly forbidden to Catholics). The idea is easy enough to understand. Would someone please answer this simple question?

    In any war there can be potentially only one side that meets the JWT. In many wars, no sides will meet the strict JWT. The Church has had the JWT for 1700 years (first introduced in the early 5th century). When, in those 1700 years, have the men of the Church within a state boundary declared a war of their caesar/king/ prime minister/president, prior to or during a war, to be unjust? Did the German Catholic hierarchy declare that WWII, before or during, to be unjust? Did the Pope declare to his diocese of Rome that the war against Ethiopia in the 1930s to be unjust?

    Remember, the Church has on many occasions declared wars to be just. This is irrefutable evidence that it has the authority to declare a war unjust. I would argue that the Church has a moral requirement to make this determination for its flock for every instance of homicidal violence.

  25. Pacifism doesn't offer solutions top Saudi Arabia's behavior as well. I mean, let's say that we had open borders and a quarter of the population of SA came top the states. How would that solve anything in Saudi Arabia? Rather you'd have some of the new implants imitating their mother country's culture, another fully embracing American culture, and another trying to find a delicate balance between the two cultures. The professor's strain of pacifism makes me very uncomfortable. Especially as someone who is anti-neocon.

  26. Caplan's arguments are far too idealistic and not relatable to the realities of war. It is very unrealistic to believe that all the civilians will just up and leave their homes to travel to America once the war hits their country. Often times it is too late for people to do anything once murder, rape, poverty, famine and all the other horrors of war start to creep into the community and wrecks havoc on everyones lives.

  27. Caplan says that the future is very difficult to predict, and so the US should not intervene because it can have bad consequences. But to not intervene can also have bad consequences. So why does he has a side on the matter ?

  28. It is interesting that the movie Hotel Rwanda nor this video makes note of the fact that the people doing thing murdering were Muslims, and the people that were killed were Christians. Also, Muslims assume that they Superior and are Supremacists. Though this video danced all around this.
    While there is no such thing as a just war, there are wars forced on us. Today Obama has changed the world and caused radical Islam to be in power. War is coming, no it is not just, you will have no other choice.

  29. "Its out business as free citizens to elect leaders whose judgment we trust with those questions". No that is the dilemma, cause there ain't no such thing. I don't trust any of them.

  30. This video was pre ISIS. This geek with glasses idea for ISIS is to put the machete in their hands and hope they don't strike his neck. Defense is where Libertarians fail. You can see it in president hopeful RAnd Pauls comments before and after the Paris attacks in November.

  31. LOL @ Ting's appeal to authority fallacy, and general ignorance towards the circumstances leading up to, surrounding and following his precious WWII example.

    if people are being slaughtered by some "evil", go intervene yourself, Professor Ting.

  32. It is better to be a warrior in a garden than a gardener in a war. Only until we can get rid of the human nature were some people feel the need to use power at every turn, then and only then can we get rid of our military. We can't choose how people act, but we can choose how we react.

  33. "justified when they fight the ideology that kill people in the name of that ideology"(paraphrase), well this guy is a fucking idiot because the Communist Vietnamese were doing just that, as a Vietnamese, please believe me when i say that. and the Soviet were the ally in WW2, and is this guy saying they weren't killing people in the name of their ideology. And no, it would have not been worse for the world if the Nazis has won, they, unlike communists, cared for their own people, and their leadership brought them from a broken country into a super power with a booming economy and living standard. what is this guy saying. and at the end this guy was straight up defending Communist China, oh lord, they have the highest execution ratio in the world, heavy human right violations, and the highest amount of bloggers and reporters jailed in the world. Not to mention they are prospering their "free market" by destroying their own fucking environment,

  34. Ask yourself this for fun: Who benefits most from this "War on _?" Who really benefits from war and foreign intervention? Who loses nothing to it? I'll give you a hint. There are people that spend other people's money and send other people's children to war. They know that having a foreign enemy to fight will inspire a majority of people to accept their actions without question, and once they have that permission, they can use it to advance themselves. Can you guess who this mystery group is?

  35. Brian Caplain is full of crap. 6 million Jews were the collateral damage of the world hesitating to intervene against Nazi ideology. We are apparently forgeting already. We need to weigh every situation very carefully, yes. But, there are times when intervention is necessary. To whom much is given, much is expected.

  36. Sure lets continue to occupy both Iraq and Afghanistan as what most republicans would say. Also as bonus when a new president comes we can occupy Syria, and also if your feeling wild maybe even Iran because of "nuclear threats", just as Iraq was labeled by George bush. What do you guys think?

  37. The circumstances that led Germany to war was the making of the rest of the world. Since most of the sane people of the world has no say on the geopolitical decisions done in the world, they should not permit themselves to be pawn. So in no way will I accept a draft.

  38. He keeps saying "in the real world" but the cases they mentioned, like the one in San Diego, are taken from the real world.

  39. there is no such thing as 100% certainty in the "real world"….does that mean we are supposed to just sit back and allow people to be killed, but hope that it ends soon? That Brian guy with the glasses is a blooming idiot and a coward! Do innocent people die as a result of war or intervention? Yes! But far more innocent people would die if we didn't get involved! Anyone who is "anti-war" needs to ask his/her self: "How would I feel if someone invaded my home, started killing my family and friends, and there were people who could get involved and possibly help, but they didn't?"

  40. There is a position between the foolish neoconservative of Ting and the equally foolish and immoral pacifism of Caplan.

  41. Prof Ting agreement would suggest we should go to war with Saudi Arabia. They have terrible human rights and condemn religious freedom.

  42. People need to stand on there own feet. the best thing we (America) can do is to be a good example to the world. bad governments or unstable factions held together by fear have a way of imploding in time. war is justified when the country or its people are in serious threat
    there is no other way to say it. people cant run from there problems and they cant expect others to give there lives up for it.

  43. The way I see it, war is necessary to have available. Our first option should be to negotiate, but if that doesn't work we must be prepared to fight. Then, after the war is won, we must be very careful about punishments we lay out. What I suggest is we execute the main people, such as dictator and military strategists, and then stop there. We loosely intervene in the rebuilding process but let the other country figure most of it out. The reason I say to be careful with punishments can be shown with two examples. One, Nazi Germany. WWII may never have happened if we hadn't, with France, Britain, and ussr, divided Germany after First World War. By doing this we provoked Germany and allowed Hitler to rise to power. Second, present day North Korea. If we hadn't split Korea in half after Korean War, North Korea wouldn't have much of a reason to hate us. To sum up my point, we ought to win the war, kill the leaders, and help a new generation rebuild the country

  44. Mr. Caplan argument is based in the impossibility of predicting the future and thus reasoning if the intervention was the best solution. Hi is not concerned about this impossibility when he calls for the dismantling of the US military, so, if this argument is valid, it also disproof his point.

  45. Total war works to advance humanity such as WWI , WWII. limited war such as Vietnam, Mideast fails because it is just interference in the internal affairs of others which leads to rebellion and more destruction and cost.

  46. Open borders? It's one thing to open our borders but don't you think citizens of North Korea would leave if they could? Don't some or most of these dictators close their own borders from the inside?

  47. Nazism and Imperial Japan were Evil? Isn't Isis just as Evil? Then say it. Don't dance around the issue by talking about ideology. Isis is akin to Nazism. Beheading IS the new Gas Chamber. ………….. Unrestricted Immigration does not solve the problem. They (pick a group…) don't want to leave their country so they can become Americans. They want to come here and re-establish their own country. They would prefer the problems in their own country just went away. Sometimes you have to fight for what you believe. ………. The United States of America is the ONLY country ever to win it's freedom from the British Empire through an act of war. It was done at the height of the British Empire. It was NOT a trivial thing. When America declared it's independence the British crown sent a Navel Fleet to retake the colonies. It would be the largest British Navel Armada put to sea until the Normandy invasion of June 1944. ……… If the American Revolution had been lost how many colonist would have been used as cannon fodder against Napoleon? How many more would have died at Trafalgar? Waterloo? War has been the first option only for the dictators – Hitler, Stalin, Franco, Mao, Castro, Pol Pot…

  48. The answer is easy…you have a military to defend your own country and not risk your peoples' lives fighting in other countries when those other countries did not attack you! No middle eastern country or group attacked the USA until AFTER we overthrew and bombed and build bases in the middle east…they reacted to what we did. Non-intervention is safer.

  49. I'm sorry Professor Caplan but a passive reactionary stance is extremely dangerous. Competitive play any many forms favors the person who reads the opponent and acts first.

  50. So, violence is justified when:
    1) Done by people
    2) To attack people who initiated violence against people from point 1)
    Private armies financed by people voluntarily can declare war on people who declared war first on innocent people.
    War done by the entity of organised violence that the state is and financed by violent robbery which is taxation using slave labour, which the unvoluntary soldiers are, is never justified. Especially now when in wars innocent people suffer because the weapons in use are weapons of mass destruction like bomb carriers, huge range explosives, nuclear weapons that nearly always harm people who didn't initiate violence.

  51. my problem with those who say war is never the answer is that they forget they can only say that stuff only because there is nobody oppressing them. they can be pacifists only because america is the toughest kid on the block.

  52. I think it's stupid to say that if you are defenceless you won't be attacked, Adolf Hitler invaded nearly all of Europe but one country he never attacked, Switzerland, Why? To invade Switzerland would have been extremely difficult. Now we can look at the defenceless countries in Europe like Poland, stuck between 2 of the largest European powers, Nazi Germany and Soviet Russia. Do you think the solution to the domination 9f Europe by national socialist would have been pacifism? The countries that survived in Europe either had a huge army,Soviets, had extremely defensible terrain, Switzerland, or were the greatest nation on Earth, UK (And the channel).

  53. So Caplan's argument is that since you don't know you shouldn't act? That is the core of what he is saying right? Hell even the Buddha tried Asceticism on his road to enlightenment

  54. The US needs to be neutral well armed Republic ready to fight against tyrants whether they be foreign or domestic and stop meddling in the affairs of other countries problems and quit being the world's police.

  55. Jan Ting seems like he believes in "america is the best country in the world". who is the judge on what is right and wrong? half the points about countries that kill for one reason or the other have absolutely no basis's. now in his defense he was talking about a religion and not a country so maybe some country somewhere does that but no religion that i know of does.
    now if you could answer this for me, why doesn't the US "help" people in iran or north Korea? why do they pick and choose who needs help? AND why are the people they "help" are usually against their governments? can't people see that there are countries out there that need water. need food. need shelter. need security from thieves.
    i mean if American helps those countries they wouldn't lose people fighting a war for selfish reasons lets face it.

    war is dumb.
    no to all types of war.

    p.s. i really hate politics.

  56. War can easily be justified. If someone is killing you, you must defend yourself. If you don't defend yourself, then you must see your life as having no value. The same applies to societies. Our society has value and I would venture to say it has more value than other societies. I don't believe we should seek war but if war should come our way we must defend our society.

  57. Free immigration is NOT CHEAPER! There are cultural costs and financial costs. I'm a firm believer in ARMING them all and let the fight it out.

  58. By the way you know what the Swiss have for military protection guess who protects the Swift to say they have no military survey leaves them alone that's utter malarkey guess who is the military strong arm take a shot in the dark oh could it be the Uf*****SA a******!!! Yeah we protect Switzerland seriously where are the ones that they have commissioned to protect them just like a lot of countries pay us or should pay us because it's contractually what they're supposed to be doing but they often don't because we're too nice. But there's supposed to pay us to watch them. To have their backs. We are there military force and by the way they do have a military just not a huge military but no they don't feel safe for them either they rely on us to protect them you f***** moron! You are an idiot oh my God you're so dumb I mean this is basic information and he had no research done to prove his theories and so his point of view and position is based on assumptions or things he believes that are untrue completely unfounded and untrue like the military being the reason why the Russians were dangerous wow that's b***** and we may be dangerous in some countries but only countries who aim to kill people our goal is to protect people around the world to give them to mock receipt and freedom now have we always succeeded in that goal no Buy Ask Vietnamese if they think what we did was good ask the Koreans it's worth it if they think what we did was good not North Korea they still want us dead well not as much thanks to Trump but of course this guy I'll never admit that but ask South Koreans what they think of us yeah and maybe a misnomer that everybody hates us around the world but ask the people and places where the military stepped in Japan I'll Korea Vietnam all of these places say what we did was amazing and we save them and Vietnam is still f**** communist state so for them to say that and they do they say it all the time Factor trying to mimic the us as far as business is concerned not as far as politics are f**** Pinko commie is but that's another story. Also asked people in Afghanistan who aren't terrorists what they think of the u.s. guarantee you'll get a whole different story than what you have in your head same as Iraqis don't you remember when the statue was pulled down and they were saying USA USA yeah yeah they still feel like that the ones that aren't terrorists they still feel like that despite the fact that Obama f*** them why did Isis take over Obama but again left he's like you and your dumbass still vote those f**** in don't you you f**** moron

  59. Bullshit argument "for military intervention". In each mentioned case the atrocities happened because of closed borders and regulations.

  60. Argentina invaded the Falkland Islands without provocation. These things happen. Militaries are necessary for self defence. There have been a great many wars of self defence apart from that one. Many never happened due to a military presents. eg. Kenya, Belize.

  61. The Swiss are too small to have much affect on the world stage and have too difficult a terrain to be attacked, but they are far from toothless.

  62. How is free immigration cheap? Why didn't the German leave under the third Reich? Or the Japanese leave under Japan's expansionism? They people BENIFITED from these plans but they were not actively violent, but they were still war supporters. How many people were killed in the USSR? Were they allowed to leave? 40million? We should have brought 40 million Ukrainians? More? Because of their families. The premise is that we must not do anything because we do not know what the future could be. This is a cop out. Did these guys forget about the ethnic cleansing in Kosovo and Serbia? We stopped that.

  63. People are afraid of invading Switzerland. They let their soilders take home their weapons, everyone fights, shooting is a huge sport, and there are bunkers all over Switzerland.

  64. I hope Caplan is representing a side he doesn't not agree with because he did not do justice to his argument.

  65. Caplan is engaged in wishful thinking here. Not standing up to defend your principles in the face of a threat is the sure way to get annihilated from the face of this earth. The world is not roses and rainbows.

  66. Of course you can't intervene everywhere, but if religious intolerance is the issue you are fighting against, why should the US fight against Iran and Iraq but not Saudi Arabia. No matter if you think war is justified or not, our choice of whom we fight wars with is absolutely absurd!!!

  67. War can only be justified in self defense against an unjust war.
    Because war is its own justification, therefore, all wars are unjustifiable.

  68. I wonder how far pacifist’s will hold into their ideology when someone is trying to kill or harm their loved ones? Will they try to negotiate with them? Point out the errors of their ways? Pray for them? Give them a hug?

  69. its really a joke when an immigrant have those stupid values lets apply them on em and kick em back to north Korea

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jan_C._Ting

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