Judging about Just Wars

Assignment. You are invited to a television program to discuss what a “just war” is. Prepare talking points (your opinion) about the following wars (see below). Do you think they have been justified from the standpoint of international law?

Case 1. China attacking Vietnam in 1979 in the wake of Vietnam’s occupation of Cambodia and Laos.
Case 2. British military actions against Argentina (known as the Falkland War or La Guerra de Las Malvinas, 1982) in the wake of Argentina’s capturing of the cluster of islands in the Atlantic Ocean.
Case 3. An international coalition attacking Libya in 2011 and removing its leader, Muammar Gaddafi, from power. Case 4. Russia occupying Crimea in 2014.
Case 5. Russia and the United States attacking the ISIL’s positions in Syria and nearby territories in 2016-17.

Use the following questions (criteria) to explain your views:

Was this war the last alternative available to the attacking nations or were there, in your opinion, other real possibilities to avoid the war? (2 points for covering 4 cases).
Was this war waged by a legitimate authority? (2 points for covering 4 cases).
Was this war started to redress a wrongful act, such as an act of profound violence or armed aggression? If yes, which one? If no, explain. (2 points for covering 4 cases).

Did this war to establish (or re-establish) peace? Explain your view. (2 points for covering 4 cases). Overall conclusion (2 points).

Suggested length: 2,700 words

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