Ethics & International Affairs

Debate: The Preventive Use of Force

Justifying Preventive Force

Allen Buchanan and Robert O. Keohane

Steven Lee offers a probing and fair minded critique of our effort to show that the preventive use of military force could be justified if the decision to undertake preventive action was reached through an appropriate institutional process. Our responses to his thoughtful criticisms will help to clarify both the moral-philosophical arguments and the institutional proposal presented in our earlier paper.

Allen Buchanan is James B. Duke Professor of Philosophy and Public Policy at Duke University. His research is in political philosophy, with a focus on international issues, and bioethics, with a focus on the ethics of genetic interventions with human beings. His most recent books are From Chance to Choice (1999), coauthored with Dan W. Brock, Norman Daniels, and Daniel Wikler, and Justice, Legitimacy, and Self-Determination: Moral Foundations for International Law (2003).

Robert O. Keohane is Professor of International Affairs, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Princeton University. He is the author of After Hegemony: Cooperation and Discord in the World Political Economy (1984) and Power and Governance in a Partially Globalized World (2002). He is coauthor (with Joseph S. Nye, Jr.) of Power and Interdependence (3rd ed., 2001), and (with Gary King and Sidney Verba) of Designing Social Inquiry (1994). He has served as the editor of International Organization and as president of the International Studies Association and the American Political Science Association.