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The principle for going to war

Ed Hudgins, The Atlas Society, on when we should to go to war. Part 1 (
Part 2 here).


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Jan Helfeld's picture

Obama: "No country has a right to send in troops

Obama: "No country has a right to send in troops to another country unprovoked." http://cnn.it/1lv2sLf pic.twitter.com/oI2PfTJumx

Jan Helfeld

"... only defensive war is legitimate."

“The Just War:
1. Just cause. All aggression is condemned; only defensive war is legitimate.

2. Just intention. The only legitimate intention is to secure a just peace for all involved. Neither revenge nor conquest nor economic gain nor ideological supremacy is justified.

3. Last resort. War may only be entered upon when all negotiations and compromise have been tried and failed.

4. Formal declaration. Since the use of military force is the prerogative of governments, not of private individuals, a state of war must be officially declared by the highest authorities.

5. Limited objectives. If the purpose is peace, then unconditional surrender or the destruction of a nation’s economic or political institutions is an unwarranted objective.

6. Proportionate means. The weaponry and the force used should be limited to what is needed to repel the aggression and deter future attacks, that is to say, to secure a just peace. Total or unlimited war is ruled out.

7. Noncombatant immunity. Since war is an official act of government, only those who are officially agents of government may fight, and individuals not actively contributing to the conflict including POW’s and casualties as well as civilian non-participants) should be immune from attack.” Arthur F. Holmes
May 7, 2004

Live in Liberty
Tom Rankin

Hmm, What Do you Call It When People Overthrow Their Government?

Isn't that war? Don't the people have a right to reject the actions of their government with force, if necessary?

Citizens living in a republic have a political system to peacefully use as their vehicle for "change". But when government manipulates the electoral system, cheats, distorts the truth, uses the media as their puppet voice to further their self-serving agenda; then what is left for the common man or woman?

Shall we go on accepting devalued script known as paper currency?
Shall we go on seeing opportunity for earning a wage disappear?
Shall we allow our property to be confiscated without due process?
Shall we stand idle as we witness people unjustly attacked by thugs?
Shall we allow our children to wear the yoke of fiat debt, forever?
Shall we go on allowing our good name, America, to be used in crime?

What do we have left when our voices are silenced, when the judiciary behaves with injustice, when the legislature allows the unelected bureaucracy to make rules that benefit their lobbyist masters and impoverish the population?

How much more must we and our love ones endure at the hands of a corrupt and evil State?

Our hearts and souls swell with the memory of liberty, our minds agonize as we see our country, our America, lose its independence.

How much longer will this go on before we say, "enough"?

Apropos -- the difference between "war" and "revolution"

Recommended reading: The Most Dangerous Superstition by Larken Rose


How true.

Jan Helfeld's picture

Thank you for your comment.

Thank you for your comment.

Jan Helfeld

every person i come into

every person i come into contact with throughout the day has the ability and potential to punch me in the face. does that mean i go around punching everyone who comes near me in the face just because they might? nope. and id end up in jail if i did.

Imminent threat of attack =

Imminent threat of attack = Magic formula.

Jan Helfeld's picture

You need objective corroborated evidence of an imminent attack

You need objective corroborated evidence of an imminent attack.

Jan Helfeld

Yep! That's what I meant.

Yep! That's basically what I meant. Though I suppose it seems as though self defense doesn't necessarily require such proof. For example, if an armed robber holds you up, you're well within your rights to ventilate the aggressor, even if you aren't sure meant to shoot/stab/burnanate you. A court will then decide if it was justified or not. In a situation of imminent threat, there would be some room for judgement, of course we have no courtroom to hold our corrupt government accountable, but then I guess that's why we are supposed to declare war as an act of Congress so as to make room for debate; as opposed to our king making a decree to pick on small countries that don't have nukes, and murder their people.

Is it weird that I feel like screaming and fainting like a teenage girl when Jan Helfeld replies to my post? You rock Jan, keep doing your thing!

Jan Helfeld's picture

Thank you for your support and comment

Thank you for your support and comment. The emotion comes from shared values which I appreciate as well.

Jan Helfeld

He obfuscates. There is absolutely a magic formula!

This obfuscator talks like a medical doctor who confuses symptoms for the cause! The big red flags and bells went off when he says, "there is no magic formula. Anybody who thinks there is... is wrong"?!

Nonsense! He speaks like a globalist or anarchist, who cannot bring themselves to respect the beauty of the constitution and it's simple solutions!

There is, absolutely, a magic formula! It is not really magic but just beautiful liberty and common law, sense!


The constitution states plainly that it is the people's prerogative, and theirs alone, through their House of Representatives, over whom they have a close attachment of only a two year term limit, to declare war!

Thus it is the people's right alone to commit their children or deny their children, to the ashes of war. That, as it should be, is an awesome decision!

The Founders made that decision, and then with rifle in hand removed themselves to the front line. There they proved the gravity of their decision.

But of course it has become very evident that the people's representatives know VERY WELL that they are beholden to the people's wishes. By their actions they reveal their awareness that it will be upon their heads alone if they defy the people in either declaring a war unwisely and wrongfully, or failing to declare when critically and tragically necessary!

It is self evident that for the last century congress has in nearly every case failed to take that responsibility and duty, honestly, upon themselves! Like the oath-breaking, historically infamous they have become, they have attempted by obfuscating and altering the meaning and very wording of that document to which they have sworn their obedience!

In altering it's meaning and purpose they have shifted the burden of that war declaration, reminiscent of 'Animal Farm', to the president instead.

In exchange, the past several presidents as well as the present usurper-in-chief, have violated their oath and duty in claiming emperor like powers, making war at will and whim, for self and politically connected wealth!

The greatest tragedy and crime against free men everywhere nevertheless remains the failure of the people in each precinct to understand, or hold in awe, that great truth of liberty... that if they would remain free, and retain that freedom for their progeny, they must shoulder the duty of guardianship and sustenance of that liberty.

Having thus far failed in the task of watchmen on the walls of liberty, they are fast becoming serfs... serfs with cool toys, but serfs nonetheless!

I know of no greater temporal duty requiring the immediacy of it's attention, than the constitutionally minded liberty grassroots attacking this failure!

We are now being weighed in the balances!

Jan Helfeld's picture

Watch me lead him to the principle in Part 2.

Watch me lead him to the principle in Part 2.

Jan Helfeld

No part two yet? Nevertheless...

This gentleman, regardless of whether he has Atlas, Axis, or Lumbar on his label, is CFR oriented, at least in 'principle'. Can he be that naive?

One notes the reference to three of the specific countries in which the CFR through their less than open efforts, is seeking regime change or using as puppet.

The real evidence however is his circumlocution around his real statement of principle, being:


Regardless of how he obfuscates, he hates this, that constitutional law subserviates tyrants, their ranting notwithstanding!

The people's choice for or against war, through congress, is terror to tyrants, and more specifically, the antithesis to what Mr. 'Atlas' has stated so far! He is parroting the mantra of global change for global tyranny.

It would take an epiphany for 'Atlas' to truly understand the constitutional republic. Maybe you can work that in him in Part II?

Jan Helfeld's picture

Watch Part 2 - He came around

He came around but then reneged.

Jan Helfeld

So, by your principle...the

So, by your principle...the government was 100% correct in invading AFghanistan and Iraq.

Both wars had the overwhelming support of the American people...91% of the American supported the Afghanistan war. Up until 2007, a strong majority of Americans supported both wars.

If Bush hadn't gone to war, Kerry would have destroyed him in an election. Hell, Bush might have gotten impeached!

IIRC, the one rep who voted against the Afghanistan use-of-force was demonized as if she had eaten babies while burning the American flag and driving drunk.

Plan for eliminating the national debt in 10-20 years:

Overview: http://rolexian.wordpress.com/2010/09/12/my-plan-for-reducin...

Specific cuts; defense spending: http://rolexian.wordpress.com/2011/01/03/more-detailed-look-a

Of course not, gov't 100% wrong... you mis-read!

1. It is not 'my principle';

2. You obfuscate the principle, almost like the government did at the time; there is no proof the people asked congress to declare war! In fact the only congressman who attempted to obtain a war declaration in committee was rebuffed!

That they used disinformation to influence public opinion in the polls after the fact, is simply another act relevant to their crimes in the process, and their intention! It was easy to make an excuse when there was no intention.

But, let us not confuse that with a decision of the people through their representatives, to declare war on another nation! That is a beast of far more ominous proportions than opinion polls which concern a far off unknown land which hardly intrudes upon March Madness!

3. Therefore the government clearly violated the principle by failing to take upon themselves the burden of representing that the people really wanted war, and therefore declaring war on a guilty sovereign nation!

Congress and the 'powers that would be', knew the people were not of a mind to declare war on a sovereign nation, not really knowing who was guilty of 911 to the extent of sacrificing their families to bomb another nation out of existence.

The whole aggression against Iraq was planned prior to Bush becoming president. It was the first on the agenda of his first cabinet meeting as president. It lacked only a Cause célèbre.

Neither do these tyrants wish to obey the constitutional requirement to do so, but rather planned to expand upon the precedent of undeclared aggression established since the time of Truman.

Not declaring war on an invaded nation is pathognomonic of aggression and the tyrant. It is the first and second charge for which the Nazi's were hung after Nuremberg.

Such action is in violation of our constitutional law. But the motive is to create global governance. The former is the impediment to the latter!

I guess in my eyes, the

I guess in my eyes, the resolution to fund the Afghanistan War was nothing more than a declaration of war.

I feel that debating otherwise is debating semantics.

Moreover, and don't quote me on this, I would guess that the vast majority of Congressmen who voted to go to war remained elected. Presumably, if the people really had a problem with it, they would have voted them out.

The American people are incredibly war-hungry. Belligerent, in fact. There are plenty of people today who want us to invade Iran, despite Iran doing nothing to provoke really us. It is unquestionable in my mind that the American people vastly supported going to war. Including, of course, Congressman Ron Paul.

Plan for eliminating the national debt in 10-20 years:

Overview: http://rolexian.wordpress.com/2010/09/12/my-plan-for-reducin...

Specific cuts; defense spending: http://rolexian.wordpress.com/2011/01/03/more-detailed-look-a

Jan Helfeld's picture

Watch Part 2 Jan leads Hudgins to a principle.

Jan leads Hudgins to a principle.

Jan Helfeld

the only time we should go to

the only time we should go to war is when Landing craft are off the coast/s. Troops are massing on the Canadian and Mexican borders. We stop the invasion and do not follow the enemy in to their home nations. That is the Christian theory of a just war.

Hey Sierrah

I have to ask you where do you get the "Christian theory of a just war" from? I'm not being argumentative, just curious. I agree that war should only be used for self defense but I'm not sure about the "do not follow the enemy in to their home nations."


I think a larger problem with

I think a larger problem with leaders and officials is that many really do not seem to operate via principles (laws). In my mind there is clear right and wrong and my principles have large implications on my life. For example, to answer this question regarding when it is right versus wrong to go to war, should officials decide or laws decide? At least I hope that the officials have principles that help guide them when they make these difficult decisions. The Iraq war was not necessary and I think this mistake reveals a lack of principles or the wrong principles held by government officials. Ron Paul mentioned the golden rule as a principle, which can be used to measure whether our own principles if held by others and used against us, if we would consider them true and good. I mean I wouldn't want another country to wage war on me if they had only abstract evidence that I was going to attack them. I would fear being framed for one! No, I would want to only be attacked if I was caught with evidence that would be held up in an open court that I was not only plotting but in the process of implementing a plan of attack against that other country. So yes, I believe this is a better way of handling initiation of war than that other country deciding subjectively that I was not in that other country's "national interest" and posed an abstract threat against that country. How easy could that country make mistake and errors that led to an unjust war and resulted in me crying out to God to vindicate me, just as many in Iraq and other country's have done I'm sure regarding the U.S. And God would be just to vindicate them, but I for one maintain my righteousness and hope that only those intentionally responsible for that decision be held to account. But we also do have a responsibility to not elect irresponsible officials with good intentions.

Jan Helfeld's picture

Watch Part 2 for the principle.

Watch Part 2 for the principle.

Jan Helfeld

Ed Hudgins never answers

Ed Hudgins never answers Jan's question, even though I think Jan was clear enough for him to do so. Instead, he gives some observations about the neoconservative foreign policy. It seems that he truly does not understand what a principle is or is unwilling to admit that his principle is that whatever the foreign policy leaders subjectively decide is a threat to America is justification to go to war. He has a scholastic tone, as if he is talking down to Jan and libertarians in general, but avoids answering the question. My response would be if another country attacks us or is in the process of attacking us (that is we have evidence that an attack is being plotted and in the process of being carried out). Now what is so wrong with the way libertarians look at it? I simply defined my principle clearly and the neoconservative give abstract "principles" that when passed through the fire boil down to preemption. So the Iraq war was justifiable to them because our leaders deemed the country an abstract threat to the U.S. He would also justify an attack on North Korea if he was in a position of power. This reminds me of the John Bolton Interview with Mr. Helfeld who basically has the same dances as Mr. Hudgins to avoid answering the question posited by Jan.

Jan Helfeld's picture

Excellent analysis.

Excellent analysis. Watch Part 2 when I lead him to the same conclusion.

Jan Helfeld

American Foreign Policy Follows the Three 'B's Doctrine

The three 'B's destructive policy has been deployed for a number of decades to promote the agenda of the American elitists. Democracy and moral values hide the insidious nature of plunder and conquest, to take the wealth of other sovereign nations if they are opposed to the self-serving interests of Washington's plan for global domination.

1. Bribe - the first offer, a seduction based on paper money schemes.
2. Bully - the second offer, economic sanctions and threats by proxy.
3. Bomb - the final act to create chaos within the country.

Americans must see with clear eyes their central government is evil. It will strangle any attempt to reduce its power as long as the people continue to participate in the political machination that exists today.

SteveMT's picture

#1 Principle: Do they have oil?

#2 Principle: Can these countries protect it?
#3 Principle: Can we get that oil by any means possible including war?

These are the principle questions.

Cyril's picture

Also relevant: "Plunder by Way of War: Origin and Mechanism"

Also relevant, I suppose:

Plunder by Way of War : On its Origin and its Mechanism


(Excerpt from "Economic Harmonies" by Frédéric Bastiat, 1850)

"Cyril" pronounced "see real". I code stuff.


"To study and not think is a waste. To think and not study is dangerous." -- Confucius

Here's a "magic formula".

Does the country have valuable resources?
Does the country compete with Saudi/US petrodollar?
Do they disregard the will of the Israeli-Zionist?
Do they condemn or forbid open trade with America?

If three or more questions are a yes, then the answer is war.
There's your magic formula.

It checks out for Iraq, Libya, Syria, and Iran anyway.

"truth is treason in an empire of lies."

Independence from Rothschild Central Bank

Prior to 2001, the only Countries in the World without a (private) Rothschild owned Central Bank were: Afghanistan Iraq, Libya, Iran, Sudan, Cuba, and North Korea.

Today there are only 3 left: Cuba, Iran, and North Korea.

If a Country has independent (sovereign) money, then that is the trigger for a guaranteed War, Coup, or CIA forced "regime change".

As Ron Paul once said, "It is no coincidence that the Century of Total War coincided with the Century of Central Banking".