In what circumstances should we be allowed to kill an intruder who breaks into our home? Should battered women be forgiven for killing their husbands? This book analyses the questions raised by the argument of self-defence, and offers a theoretical framework for understanding the defence in the context of human rights norms.
Research Paper (postgraduate) from the year 2009 in the subject Ethics, University of Manchester (Political Theory), language: English, abstract: This paper will investigate what implications this new position poses to Quong’s rejection of Otsukas stance on the moral impermissibility of killing the innocent aggressor and the innocent threat in self-defence, as well as the implications it might have on Thomson’s own 1991 views (Quong 2008:6) 1 In the case of the bystander-Trolley-case 1 The Ethics of Killing Killing in Self-Defence My conclusion on this shall reveal that I generally agree with the conclusions of Quong, though I disagree with the way he reaches these conclusions. In doing this, I shall present some scenarios which might not fit neatly into the proposed categories of Thomson, in order to examine whether the categorisation hitherto used is adequate and to investigate the possible implications this might have for a theory of killing in self-defence
Drawing from scholarship across law, history, politics and philosophy, Self-Defence in International and Criminal Law provides a broad and interdisciplinary approach to the doctrine of self-defence in both domestic criminal and international law. It focuses on the requirement of imminence, which deals with the question of when individuals or States may legitimately resort to defensive force against a serious danger or harm. In both national and international law the imminence requirement, if strictly applied, renders any defensive measure taken in anticipation of a would-be attack illegal. Recently, however, attempts have been made to relax the temporal requirement of the self-defence doctrine (imminence) with a view to allowing individuals or States to employ deadly force to arrest an anticipated threat when they ‘believe’ that using ‘pre-emptive’ lethal force would be the only way to thwart an expected harm. In domestic criminal law, it has been argued that it is necessary to relax the rule of imminence in domestic violence cases where women employ lethal force against their abusive partners when there is no imminent threat to justify defensive force. At the international level, while there has long been controversy as to the justifiability of pre-emptive force in non-confrontational settings, following the September 11 attacks, the Bush Administration’s ‘war on terror’ policy radically shifted the focus from the notion of anticipation to that of prevention, making it clear that, if necessary, it would invoke unilateral force against emerging threats before they are fully formed. The book surveys the roots, role, rationale, and objectives of self-defence and questions whether the requirement of imminence should be removed from the traditional contours of the self-defence doctrine in national and international law.
The targeted killing of terrorists has become an established practice in the fight against terrorism. Anna Goppel analyses the justifiability of this practice, both from a moral and an international legal perspective. She shows that the targeted killing of terrorists can be justified only in very specific and rather theoretical cases. This seriously questions the practice as well as its increasing acceptance.
In this book, philosopher Seumas Miller analyzes the various moral justifications and moral responsibilities involved in the use of lethal force by police and military, relying on a distinctive normative teleological account of institutional roles. Miller covers a variety of urgent and morally complex topics, including police shootings of armed offenders, police shooting of suicide-bombers, targeted killing, autonomous weapons, humanitarian armed intervention, and civilian immunity. -- Provided by publisher.
In Justified Killing, Whitley R. P. Kaufman argues that none of the leading theories adequately explains why it is permissible even to kill an innocent attacker in self-defense, given the basic moral prohibition against killing the innocent. Kaufman suggests that such an explanation can be found in the traditional Doctrine of Double Effect, according to which self-defense is justified because the intention of the defender is to protect himself rather than harm the attacker.
Why are we so reluctant to believe that women can mean to kill? Based on case-studies from the US, UK and Australia, this book looks at the ways in which female killers are constructed in the media, in law and in feminist discourse almost invariably as victims rather than actors in the crimes they commit. Morrissey argues that by denying the possibility of female agency in crimes of torture, rape and murder, feminist theorists are, with the best of intentions, actually denying women the full freedom to be human. Case studies cover among others the battered wife, Pamela Sainsbury, who garrotted her husband as he slept, the serial killer, Aileen Wournos, who killed seven middle-aged men in Florida between 1989 and 1990, Tracey Wiggington, the so-called "lesbian vampire killer", and Karla Homolka who helped her husband kill two teenage girls in St. Catherines Ontario in 1993.
The present book brings together perspectives from different disciplinary fields to examine the significant legal, moral and political issues which arise in relation to the use of lethal force in both domestic and international law. These issues have particular salience in the counter terrorism context following 9/11 (which brought with it the spectre of shooting down hijacked airplanes) and the use of force in Operation Kratos that led to the tragic shooting of Jean Charles de Menezes. Concerns about the use of excessive force, however, are not confined to the terrorist situation. The essays in this collection examine how the state sanctions the use of lethal force in varied ways: through the doctrines of public and private self-defence and the development of legislation and case law that excuses or justifies the use of lethal force in the course of executing an arrest, preventing crime or disorder or protecting private property. An important theme is how the domestic and international legal orders intersect and continually influence one another. While legal approaches to the use of lethal force share common features, the context within which force is deployed varies greatly. Key issues explored in this volume are the extent to which domestic and international law authorise pre-emptive use of force, and how necessity and reasonableness are legally constructed in this context.
Why is it that soldiers may be killed in war but civilians may not be killed? By tracing the evolution of the principle of non-combatant immunity in Western thought from its medieval religious origins to its modern legal status, Colm McKeogh attempts to answer this question. In doing so he highlights the unsuccessful attempts to reconcile warfare with our civilization's most fundamental principles of justice.