Ethics

The Assault on Ethics

A year and a half into the Trump presidency, its most consequential feature thus far is its assault on ethics. What began as a curiosity and a jolt—reality TV comes to politics— is now routine. Demonstrably false statements arrive daily. Name-calling and outright attacks on reporters, judges, and public figures are standard fare in a stream of tweets, interviews, and rallies.

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Foreword to Volume “Just War Thinkers: From Cicero to the 21st Century”

This book tells the story of the just war through its main protagonists. Each chapter gives insight into the life and times of the most significant just war thinkers. Through these characters we see the tradition grow, evolve, and change over time. We see the tradition as it emerges from ancient and classical roots through the early years of the state system, and eventually to the contemporary post-colonial milieu. We see individuals as well as institutions. Crucially, we see that the just war thinkers do not live in a world of theory. They live in a world where ideas and life experience develop together, where principles often conflict and hard choices must be made.

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Rising Fences: Migrants, Borders, and a New Frontier for Ethics

What will 2015 be remembered for? The image that comes to mind is “rising fences.” If we took a satellite photo of the planet, that would be the story; fences going up everywhere.

The wars and political chaos of the past year created a massive wave of truly desperate people. The wave is global in scale. Europe has borne the brunt. But the United States, Canada, Australia and many other nations are not immune.

What is the response? What should be the response?

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A Letter to Andrew Carnegie on the Eve of the Council‘s Centennial

Dear Mr. Carnegie,

As the current president of the Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs, it is my privilege to report to you on the eve of the 100th anniversary of our founding.

It is not often that we have an opportunity to think in terms of 100 years. It’s a span well-suited to remind us that while our lives are time-bound, our connections endure. And as much as things change, they remain the same.

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Drones: Legal, Ethical, and Wise?

The white paper released in February 2013 detailing the Obama administration’s policy on the use of drones for targeted killings has stirred plenty of controversy. Questions about the policy came up again during the Senate confirmation hearing for John Brennan, President Obama’s nominee for CIA director.

White House spokesman Jay Carney has defended the drone memo, asserting: “These strikes are legal, they are ethical, and they are wise.” But rather than closing the debate, that statement frames the three essential questions Americans should be asking about U.S. drone policy.

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