Friday, Oct. 8, 2010, 3:30 p.m., 607 Dale Hall Tower. Everyone is welcome!
In the standard, just war theory, use of this term, “humanitarian intervention” refers to the use of military force by one nation or group of nations to stop genocide or other gross human rights violations in another sovereign nation. Such purportedly humanitarian intervention, however, often ends up killing innocent civilians, violating the principles of just war theory, and making matters worse. Furthermore, only the most horrible, massive and violent violations of human rights can justify the use of military force against a sovereign nation, and therefore many serious evils go uncounted, unnoticed, and unmitigated. In this paper I suggest a range of responses to human rights violations that includes military intervention as only one end of the continuum, and to combine this with a greater understanding of the scope of human rights violations that require international response. I offer a new conception of truly humanitarian treatment within and beyond international borders.