The continuing importance of wars in international relations poses the question, where wars actually originate. Are they the inventions of the states , mere accidents of history or as indicated, they are ultimately rooted in human nature. In this essay I will try to find an answer to this question, through looking at some of the basic assumptions of classical political theorists and their critics, then moving on to discuss the main reasons behind warfare. Following the projection of the dilemma from the individual to the international level. I will move on and try to find the alternative roots of warfare, and showing a current survey in order to illustrate my point. Finally I will arrive to the conclusion that war does have its ultimate roots in human nature, however this view has some limits as well.
[...] After seeing the main theories and their critics, now I would like to move on to the next point, which is a brief examination of the different reasons of war in human nature in case it does actually originate from there. The two most obvious reasons for war are aggression and lust for power. On the individual level, aggression seems to be the more relevant reason, however on the international level, it is rather lust for power, as people who are in the political world must have some lust for power, as without it they would not have gotten there where they are. [...]
[...] According to Wilson's interpretation, Hobbes asserts that seeds of warfare are in the human nature but they have to be triggered by environmental forces such as competition for resources Wilson as quoted in Dawson, D. (1996) The Origins of War: Biological and Anthropological Theories. History and Theory, Vol No Available from: JSTOR at www.jstor.org . This all makes sense when we look at the idea of the state of nature, where in an anarchy, thus an environmental force, people are forced to fight for their resources as there is no authority. [...]
[...] If we claim that war does not have its roots in human nature, we need to find alternative answers for the problem, where war is ultimately rooted? An alternative explanation of the origin of wars is that they are the creations of the states not of human beings. Montesquieu for example asserted that war must be the creation of states, not individuals, or societies or peoples Dawson, D. (1996) The Origins of War: Biological and Anthropological Theories. History and Theory, Vol No Available from: JSTOR at www.jstor.org . [...]
[...] Another realist author who finds the roots of war in human nature is Morgenthau. He was even more convinced than Hobbes, claiming that ultimately conflict and war are rooted in human nature. Morgenthau, as other biological realists, views human nature as something fixed that cannot be changed Griffiths, M. (1992) Realism, Idealism and International Politics, A Reinterpretation. 2nd ed., p. 37-46. London, Routledge p He asserts that all social forces are the product of human nature in action, and so is war. [...]
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