is war necessary? (now: liberty vs. world peace).

[center]hi there! this be ouchy subject
please be so kind to keep a casual, over-a-glass-in-a-pub tone
and to assume others are doing just the same 8)

↑ especially important if you’re one to argue for the possibility of peace.[/center]attention: the original purpose of this topic has been achieved. amused himself to death established a way in which perpetual peace can arguably be achieved, and in the process transformed this into a different subject. read this post for a summary of what was said in the first part of this topic, and for pointers on what’s being discussed now. this discussion started on the 90’s topic. i’m starting a new one because ld4all is like the proverbial philosopher’s heart: there’s always room for another, erm, topic. o.k., nevermind. so the question is: is war necessary? this question involves a couple of premises that i think we better lay clear before everyone starts shooting disparate opinions and this becomes a big crazy easily-inflamable Tower of Babel, hm? so lets take the question in our hands and turn it around for a moment.

the first important thing to make clear is that saying war is necessary is the exact same thing as saying it’s part of the human nature. saying “war is necessary” is the same as saying “we can’t help it”, or “it’s inherent to us” etc. so if you make a post saying something like, “i think war is necessary because we just can’t help it”, you’re sure being a dear and posting your opinion, but you’re also adding nothing to the discussion. why do you think we can’t help it — why do you think war is necessary?

another important thing. we’re talking about necessity here, not morality. the expression “necessary evil” ain’t a paradox and, in fact, i don’t think anyone in this forum would in their right mind defend that given a choice, we should choose humankind + war. so no matter how nice of you it is to remind us that “war is evil”, this does only say that war should be regreted — it does not prove that war ain’t necessary, and so it, too, adds pretty much nothing to the discussion.

at any rate, i just made the two points here, repeating them would be useless redundancy. and really. i’d like to see serious arguments on why war should or not be considered second nature to men. don’t just strike down a two-liner with an old tacky cynical opinion, hm? take your time. grasp the question, try to make sure you fully understand it, handle it, turn it around, make peace with your opinion and your reasons for having that opinion.

make an argument, here. make your point. make us proud of you.

War is necessary. Not because it does anything productive or purposeful, but because humans are greedy and they aren’t excepting of behavior and ideas too different from there social norms. I am not saying war is part of human nature, but that greed and using violence to make others submit to your will are part part of human nature. So war is not part of our nature but a tool to carry out actions that fit it. If world wide culture decided that this “tool” was to desctructive or “evil”, then war would cease to be necessary, but that will never happen imo.

Obviously war is not necessary.
Nor is it human nature.
Governments use war to make money and to thin out populations. Basically, it’s extermination. They use propaganda to stir “patriotism” within the uneducated lower class of society, and send them off to die.


War is what happens when authorities tell stories in order to extricate blood for resources.

Stories are dangerous because they are emotions gone haywire, if you could look at the programming it would simply be
very simple, so simple someone else needs to figure it out for me

it can be a really long story, books and manifestos wide, or really short,
it involves all sorts of romanticisms, sometimes Gods and God and mythical figures, and its all there to embed and condition the fear / anger / pride / arrogance / anger / hate mechanism within the population, lighting a fire in their souls and then directing this energy towards a scapegoat.

while it may be animal nature to war and fight humans are 1/2 animal and 1/2 spiritual vessel and usually we do not even notice we have spiritual consciousness because the authorities don’t want it to be seen right now, which is why religion killed Jesus

lots of people want to tangle in the “defense” angle but this is all congruent with thought-stream alignment and the inner personalities karma

essentially if one wishes to be a “warrior” in a good way they must have absolutely no negative emotions and act out of compassion only using the least force necessary

this is why the Allegory of the Cave is important material, we mistake (because we are taught to on purpose) uniforms for honor
a uniform is just a costume, it does not say that the person wielding it is a sinner or a saint or anything in between, you cannot know by how they dress and what allegiance they profess
but if you only see what is on TV you might think differently.

the truest patriots always keep their government in check, for the people BY the people…

tkrulewich: it is logically impossible to say “war is necessary but it’s not human nature”. humans cause war, so if you say war is necessary, you’re saying “humans necessarily cause war”, which means they can’t not cause war, in which case it is human nature. saying war is necessary but not human nature is contradiction, so you have to make you mind: is it possible for humans to not make war, or is it not?

James: so you’re basically saying war is not inherent to humans, but still comes from something typically human like, say, governments, or power? this is a very flattering position from where i stand (i’m an anarchist, see), but i’m afraid it’s anthropologically incorrect. war predates governments by about 15000 years. the first evidence of humans engaging war matches — gasp! — some of our earliest evidence of technology. i’m talking about the period where we were still hordes of monkey-like bipeds.

here’s a thought. i could say that war is not necessary, because (as i demonstrated above), if war was necessary, then it would be human nature. but then we would have to deal with pacifists. what are them? how to explain them? are them a bunch of weirdos? mutants? is pacifism a deviation? a pathology? this makes so little sense that we’re forced to say that no: war is not necessary. if everyone were pacifists, there wouldn’t be war. (have to share: i’ve actually seen people try argue against this by saying that, deep down, there’s no such a thing as pacifists). now. what does this mean?

Anything done 15000 years before government isn’t credible. According to the current standards we were merely an unintelligent purely animal culture no?

How could you argue that war is human behaviour if we didn’t know any better (If what your saying here is credible) (I’m not sure where humankind was at 15000 years ago).

And where is the evidence of a warlike culture 15000 years ago, i would like to be proven wrong on this one. I seriously hope i’m wrong.

I would like to know that humans are inherantly evil, well for most.

no. we absolutely weren’t, or rather, not in any way we have ever since ceased to be. there are people living just like they did back then. they’re what we call tribes. :wink: and it is important. somewhere in between 15000 and 19000 years ago (that’s 11000 to 15000 years before government), homo sapiens came to be. biologically, we have not changed ever since in any structural way. (non structural changes are the differentiations that some people insist to call “races”).

really, don’t you know that lovely story about how we the homo sapiens anihilated our cousins, the homo neanderthalensis?

guess what, scientists still haven’t found that gene, let alone run the statistics to see if the majority of people carry it. the good gene hasn’t been found either, for that matter. word has it that they’re no more than an urban myth. some people even dare say there’s no such a thing as good and evil to begin with! can you believe it? :slight_smile:

(warning: this is a bit “stream of thought”, and it might ramble a bit. Sorry!)

I would argue that war IS necessary, but not because it is the nature of every human. Rather, I believe it is the fact that some humans are so aggressive/greedy/misguided/hateful that they cannot be reasoned with, and therefore must be dealt with in the only way it is possible to stop them: violence.

My thinking lies in a combination of genetic programming and psychology. Some people are aggressive/pacifistic, but not ALL people are that way; it is a result of their genes (which are partially responsible for natural tendencies) and their upbringing/experiences in life that make them that way. In fact, I don’t think that I’m wrong in saying that most all of our personality traits are born this way, and that we’re greatly diverse as a species because of that.

So, it is easy to see how from time to time, war becomes necessary. If one looks at the story of Adolf Hitler, they can see how this takes shape: a person with high intelligence/cunning and bad personality traits (hatred, greed, mental illness, etc) can rise through the ranks, deceive the populace, and eventually come to a position of power where they can let their worse personality traits run rampant, doing violence or injustice to other people on a national level. As a result, other nations/peoples must try to find a way to resolve the issue through non-violent means, weigh the consequences of inaction, and go to war if necessary. Of course, that’s not how it really works, all the time. Again, it is because of the personality traits mixed within the leaders and the people that follow them (nationalism/jingoism, propoganda, and other such influences are huge factors… one only has to look at the Iraq War to see that misinformation is a big factor).

So, is war necessary? I can think of several specific cases where I would say no, war was not necessary in order to resolve a conflict. But on the flip side, there are times when war is DEFINITELY necessary for the good of the people (from the standpoint of those who are being attacked/done wrong by an aggressor).

(By the way, I disagree with your argument that war predates governments by 15000 years. Certainly, violence has been around for as long as the human race has existed, meaning that murder, theft, and other ways of proving “dominance” have been around “forever” in the human eye. However, “war” as I perceive it involves the concept of groups of people engaging in combat with each other. So, however small and fleeting it is, war is caused by a form of government; even if it’s just temporary group assent that an aggressor must be taken down, it is still “government” in that they exercise authority over each other and perform the function of making a decision for the group.)

What I meant my previous post is that large scale war isn’t necessarily human nature. Violence and even fighting in gangs, which could be seen as a smaller version of a war, would be human nature because we realize that through violence we can sometimes manipulate others and (I didn’t touch on this before) satisfy our angers. For example, a young boy is teasing his older brother, and the older brother hits him out of anger. Example 2: A bully needs money so he uses violence to get it from a victim. Example 3: Person X does something to person Y. Person Y doesn’t like this and gets his/her friends/gang members to help beat person X up. The thing is 2/3 of these examples involve people who have some kind of relationship good or bad. In the case of the bully it is different, but then that would mean the bullies nature is different from that of the rest of society. In the other 2 examples it is important that the people actually have some sort of a relation because it increases the emotions tied in and makes violence a more likely occurrence. Ask yourself this. When was the last time you were actually angry at another country for something they did? You might be displeased, but its unlikely you would be angry at a country. The truth is that, because you don’t actually know the people, and there are so many different people, that you have trouble being angry at them. So that should rule out a war for revenge for the average person and general human nature. The other case would be the “bully” situation. When is the last time you thought, “We should go to war with country X, because we want them to do (or not do) action Y.” There are a few individuals who think that way, but it is not the majority, so it wouldn’t be human nature, but the nature of some individuals.

I might have missed some things in my analysis, but honestly I’ve been forming my opinions as I’m writing as war isn’t something that crosses my mind often :happy:. This type of conversation is good for me though. It makes me think :smile:

p.s. I love how the people on ld4all are so intellectual. :razz: I can never have conversations like this in real life other than with my parents who are very intelligent. Maybe its because you have to be open minded to try something like lucid dreaming :smile:

oh yeah 1 more thing (lol I keep pressing edit and adding stuff)

I am one of those people :happy:. Its not that I don’t have my own set of morals, but that good and evil are not universal but defined by the individual and the society.

I think underscore hit the nail on the head pretty much. War isn’t necessarily needed in all instances, but in some it definitely must and has to be used. Take for instance Russia currently. She is invading Georgia, with pretty much nothing to stop it. Russia provides 40% of power to EU, if the stat I read is correct, and so realistically the EU can’t do ANYTHING pretty much to stop Russia from invading Georgia. If it attacked, the EU would instantly lose 40% of its energy, killing, or seriously maiming its economy. The only countries that could do anything are: the US (seriously bogged down in Iraq and facing economic recession, with even a possible war ahead with Iran, without yet another war on its hands)...thats about it. So there is nothing to stop Russia, and so it can do pretty much what it wants. And it will, because there is seemingly nobody to balance the scale at all, through force or by other means. Diplomacy would only really work here if we were seen to be in a position of power over Russia, fearing a war that it would lose, would retreat from Georgia, not be assholes, etc.

In any case though, Id say actual democracies are less likely to be war mongering than dictatorships. If the people dont want war, then that`s what they get, for the most part.

no problem man! hey, don’t take it too seriously. don’t take this discussion too seriously. don’t take yourself too seriously. hell, please don’t take me too seriously (i mean, why start now ;p). life is too short for that, hm?

bravo! but you could use some rhetoric to make your argument more appealing. allow me? :slight_smile:

first, you’re attributing war to western-european patterns of feeling & behaviour (concepts such as “greed”, “hate”, “reason” and “violence” are social constructs of our culture). like i said, hordes of homo sapiens 10000 years ago didn’t have much of what we could call an “individual”, not like we came to use this word at around the time when Kant published his “Was ist Aufklärung?”. but surely, no matter how you assemble a bunch of humans, it’ll be made of elements, elements driven by certain impulses. among these impulses, among these drives, we could arguably find drives that incentive war behaviour and drives that incentive pacifist behavior.

at this point your argument falls short. you say war is not necessary on a per-individual basis, but that when it comes to humankind, there will always be war-inducing forces pressuring the Big Mob. you give this two possible reasons: nature & nurture. now, if we are to agree that war is bad, the implication of what you’re saying is that people in favor of war should be locked away. war is a pathology — every society has a list of what it considers pathological, for our little utopia that could be it. it’s not their fault, they’re not evil, they just happened to be born or raised this way. but we can’t, in the best interest of our children, allow them to express their impulses into our society.

does that sound too nazi for you? alright, let me rephrase, what if we the pacifists run away to, i don’t know, the Moon and start a little pacifist utopia. hippies and a couple of weird experimental societies in the history of Brazil tell me that it is absolutely possible to gather up people who do not want war and end up with a pacifist society. (they tend to get destroyed by not-as-pacifist societies, but i’m willing to bet that’s Jon’s argument, so i’ll leave that to him).

the point is, you argue that war is necessary because there are bad apples, and this very argument can be subverted through a Maxwell’s demon thought experiment into the very proof that war is not necessary — with some very sinister political implications in my opinion, like the possibility of a pacifist-eugenic speech.

this kind of doesn’t fit with the preceding argument you were making and, moreover, it turns around to giving a moral justification of war — which, like i said in my first post, is an answer to the question “is war nice?”, but not an answer to the question “do humans necessarily make war?”

lets revise some paleopolitics here, shall we? for most of human history, there haven’t been individuals, let alone persons. we were just elements of hordes. those hordes used to engage in combat with each other — in fact, archeology shows us that our grandparents the cro magnon men devised heavy, if rudimentary, weaponry which they used to anihilate their cousins, the homo neanderthalis men from Eurasia. (the reasons why the neanderthalis disappeared from Africa are a little bit more disputed). since the cro magnum’s status as homo sapiens is still disputed, we could even argue that the war-mongering genes predate the rise of consciousness in men. talk about hard wiring!

seriously, though, trust me on this one. groups of humans existed long before “groups of humans with superstructures for a division of labour and power” (which is how we define a government). most human societies up until very recently had “group power” in terms of other “groups”, but its members had no “individual power” in terms of other “individuals”. governments emerge when some people in a group have more power than others and that power is assured by a social superstructure.

also, and once again, i’d like to point out you’re the one inverting things here when you speak about hominids “sealing” or acting based on “greed”. those values are strictly western-europen. (hell, aztecs had a civilisation more advanced — technologically, politically, socially and urbanistically — than europeans, and still they didn’t know the concept of “lying”!).

nicely done, a psychological explanation of war. it’s a little sketchy, but let me tell you: it strikes me as genuinely nietzschean. very simple and very sophisticated! so humans are (you might add for precaution: “SOMETIMES”) driven by a thirst of power, they can only get closure from whatever psychological state you’re positing by affirming their power. this can be seen in a lot of different scenarios, from the the discipline it takes for a muslim to fast every day during Ramadan (power over oneself) to the physical force it takes for the bully to squash the weirdos (power over others). war would be one aspect of this trait inherent to humans, and manifestations of war would emerge from such complex systems that although we can do our best to avoid war, we can never be sure that it won’t happen again: in which sense war would be indutively necessary. i like that argument, i want to see how other people respond to it.

i don’t remember which was the most recent: when the democrat party at the United States stopped supporting John Edwards, or when France vetoed the european constitution (against its own interests, and much to Britain’s laugher and rejoyce).

no, i’m pretty sure i was angry, i even found myself cursing the french for being so provincial and the yankees for being so prostrated, even though i regret and no longer support either value judgment.

…might i point out you just swept all current geopolitical conflicts under the mat? either you’re making a very serious value judgement which would imply the yanks, the russians, the georgians, the pakis, the chinese, the bolivians, the colombians, the somalians, the caucasians etc. etc. aren’t really human (or at least aren’t really relevant), or we’re talking about a hypothetical world in which all present world conflicts aren’t really going on.

to be honest, i myself don’t have a formed opinion on this one. i started the topic because i wanted to think. (hence me playing devil’s advocate and arguing for both sides).

hahaha. yes. i was being sarcastic, there: i believe exactly the same. :slight_smile:

aww, Jon! here was i thinking you were going to argue that war is necessary because pacifist societies tend to get attacked, and instead you resort to morals?

/me smacks Jon with a big large trout. ;p

i know you think war can be justified, and i know you think it can be made unavoidable once it’s set up — hey, i even agree with the later. but say, do you think it’s conceivable, at any rate that, humans can be put (or put themselves) in a situation where they arguably won’t make war at all, forever after?

[color=#cc3333] but since you’re joining the discussion, here’s another twist of the main question, one which i’m curious to see how you’ll react to. the question, “is war necessary?” is equivalent to asking ourselves whether peace is really possible. so far, history has given us enough evidence to support the idea that war is second nature to humankind, and that peace is a modality of war. (if this concept is somewhat troubling to accept as-is, i’m willing to clarify).

peace is how we call the absence of war, and this is what makes the two questions — whether war is necessary and whether peace is possible — equivalent. if war is shown to be second nature of men, all peace is impossible (that’s to say, the right mindset for a period of peace would be to ask yourself when and how the next war will break — this has very interests implications to how we would deal with commonsense morality).

but this raises an issue that entertains me the most: if peace is impossible, than armed peace is just a category of the impossible. throughout our shared western-european history, we have seen countless examples of so-called armed peaces, starting perhaps from the Pax Romana all the way down to the current multipolar spoils of the half-dead Pax Americana of the 20th century. they’re nifty in that, regardless of sending sovereignty of peoples to space, they at least provide us with a promise of permanent peace.

now, if war is shown to be necessary, every people with half a brain at work would be absolutely justified in arming itself to the teeth. this brings back to the topic your argument about the Russia-Georgia conflict, but now under a new light: we personally have our own judgments on whether or not that conflict is nice and pretty, but we would have to agree that these kinds of conflicts emerge from necessity, and that Russia, Georgia, China, the States and especially Europe are fundamentally justified in doing what they did, from a geopolitical point of view.

a proof of the necessity of war would imply the impossibility of any promise of peace, raising two questions about the Pax Ocidentalis of the 21st century: is it still justified in that it (arguably) minimises war, and is it justified in that it creates hegemonies which work against the sovereignty of peoples. the foremost geopolitical implication of an arguable proof of the impossibility of peace is that all peoples should prepare to fight for their interests (politically or downright belically).

again, i’m not talking about nice and ugly here, but about rational, political valuations. should we all ask the United States to kindly stop bullsh–ing us with that notion of “armed peace”, and come clear about our interests and intentions, or can we still hope for a United Nations oriented armed peace, lead by the States, Europe and Russia? </post note>[/color]

history begs to disagree. depending on your point of view, democracies can be seen as more pacific domestically (that is, less prone to civil war and that kind of sh–). but when it comes to foreign affairs, democracies have shown throughout history to be just as prone to war as any other form of human ensemble. (if anything, you could argue that at least in democracies people fight because they want to, as opposed to dictatorships — this is never precisely so, but it’s a generalisation i’m willing to accept if it makes you happy).

Maybe I am just weird, and I do have a disorder which makes me socially different from others, but I find it hard to focus my anger on a country or even a government. I can be angry at an individual such as a military dictator or George Bush, but the actions of a country on the behalf of a leader never cause me to feel angry at the country or government as a whole.

For one thing, do you really think all of the citizens of those countries support the wars they are taking part it? Secondly, I did not consider other cultures where war may be seen even as a good solution, and not just the nature of a few individuals in the society that happen to rise to power. But If a culture supports war then that is a learned nature and not one inherent to all humans. Example: 99% of the citizens of country X advocate war, and as a young child they are taught to be warriors and defend their beliefs. If a child of that ethnicity is brought to another country where war is not advocated they will not end up war-like in nature. The idea is that learned nature could be anything, and changes, meaning that it could one day become non-existent, while general human nature should be mostly universal, and never changes (other than with the evolution of our species)

p.s. You really enjoy philosophy don’t ya, bruno? :smile: I don’t know much about the ideas of any great philosophers, because they don’t teach that in a public high school, and I haven’t gone out of my way to learn it. I mostly go out of my way to learn about technology and programming, and occasionally science, but philosophy is great fun to talk about :happy:

not all of them, just the ones that did not join protest, or actively tried to contribute to their president’s impeachment, or at least stopped paying their taxes. democracy is an interesting thing: it means responsibility, not the lack thereof. if you support democracy, not only have you got to go with the majority, but you have to take responsibility for it. so whenever someone tells me “hey, i know, it sucks, but don’t blame me — i don’t agree with it!”, i’m forced to retort: “then what have you done to stop it?”. letting something happen without doing as much as lifting a finger is, in my opinion, supporting that thing. when hundreds of human lives are at play, so is waiting four years to have a shot at changing the scenario.

that’s an important distinction, point taken. if war is 100% nurture and 0% nature, then it most definitely isn’t necessary, it just so happens that humans have been nurturing their kids for war ever since we were a bunch of war mongering monkeys. this develops into two questions: how can you prove that war mongering is only induced by nurture; and can peace be possible in practice, that is, are humans able to even scratch the surface of an aspect of their nurture which has been present in almost every knwon culture in the past 19 000 years?

we’ll, you’ve been doing great, actually. see, philosophy is not supposed to be the german names (can you even pronounce “Nietzsche”?) and confusing lingo (“weltanschauung”, “différance”, “kunicism”). those are to philosophy what the expression “harmonic scale” is to music. like music, there’s a sense in which philosophy is inate to all of us. in your posts, you’ve used many logical patterns (“theorems” and “derivations”) and rhetorical and patterns (“schemata”), even though you don’t know their names.

if you pay attention to how i correct you, you’ll learn to recognise these patterns too, even though you still won’t learn their names. it’s like informally learning to appreciate music, or to tell “psychedelic rock” from “heavy metal”. talk about stuff, and you’re in your way to learning philosophy in whatever sense it will be of any use in your life. consider formally studying philosophy on the same note that you consider studying physics or music.

that being said, if you’re interested in learning something about some author (say, Heidegger), or a branch of philosphy (epistemology), or a school of thought (Existentialism), or about a particular problem (“is war necessary?”), maybe i can help, if only a little — feel free to send me a PM. :slight_smile:

Whoa, missed a lot there!

Bruno, you of all people should know that wars fought by the ancient cultures (tribes) fought for entirely different reasons and cannot even be compared to the fighting which has taken place in the last oh, couple millenia.

They fought for territory which was sacred, they fought as a right of passage, and honour. Not Money, political influence and resources.

It doesn’t matter what they were fighting over. They were fighting over what was important to them at the time, and it just happens that what was important then is different than what we see as important today.

i really should get a hold of myself. ;p

i’m not sure, man, i’m not at all sure. first because it’s a bit tendencious to both put tribes in the past as if they were no longer, and to on top of that say that they only fought for territory and honour. honour is another western-european concept, i’ve studied many societies — some still alive and out there — that do not have a code of honour or any system similar to it. as for territory… hell, most tribes i’ve seen or studied fight for their gods. we inherited that, ourselves — some people might put us to fight for their interests, but the discourse is always one of fighting “for the absolute good”, “for god” and the recently fashionable “for democracy”.

/me deletes a big paragraph in which he had traced this back to the biblical god.

at any rate, i don’t get your criterion. values worth fighting for? based on what morals, and more importantly, what does this say about the inevitability of war? if war is shown to be inevitable, all-too-human, the values don’t really matter. put it another way: the real value is somewhere else. for instance: wars have winners and losers, so the act of war could be based around the value of winning, not that of, say, democracy. wars would be demonstrations of power, and if Nietzsche’s thesis is right and the fundamental principle of human behaviour is the will to power, then war is not just natural, but actually healthy of people who have physical power and need to demonstrate it in order to feel whole.

(the fact that war is a demonstration of physical and technological power only is quite relevant here — it might be a key to arguing for the possibility of peace. consider for a moment who’s the most powerful, or the bravest: the contemporary tibetan monk who fights authorities by use of guns, or the tibetan monks who, during the Viet Nam war, set themselves on fire and burnt to death in silent protest? who is more powerful: the pacifist who dies but refuses to lose, or the fighter who plays a bet against the devil in the vain hope that they will win, investing all their lives in whatever technical skill they happen to have, running away from death at all times?)

what’s more, i think you might be actually arguing against yourself. in your argument, you imply that there are some arguably valid reasons to go to war, such as defending your territory or your honour. but when you say this, you put yourself in check mate: if i were to accept that, i would have to accept that war is, at the end of the day, necessary, inevitable. think about it. :wink:

When I first argued, i wrote only of war as we have experienced it since modern warfare.

But i guess i am two sided in this, i hadn`t thought about tribal warfare which is totally different than war as we are used to.

not necessarily. the basic elements are all there. perhaps, in fact, it should be useful to put together a little paragraph with them, so that we can start talking about the nature of war itself, try to understand the anthropological context in which it emerges, and what it represents. whether or not war is second nature to man, a list like that — an informal definition of war — could play a very powerful role as an argument.

so what do we know about war? it is a group behaviour, and in fact it predates the individual, the person, the subject and quite possibly the ego in the history of human evolution: in fact, even in highly individualistic societies (as is ours), war is marked by a solid depersonalisation of those who engage in it. put another way: those who engage in war are not subjects, but elements of a bigger subject, the subjects of war are always groups, and their elements combat anonymously and impersonally. the grupal subjects of war engage in physical or technological combat, that is to say, groups will attack each other by physical or technological means. the object of war is winning, and should no external factor interfere with the course of a war, it will end if and only if it is perfectly clear who are the winners and who are the losers.

looking at this superstructure of war, it is pretty easy to see it hasn’t changed at all ever since the homo faber time. war as i’ve just characterised it is commonly agreed to have come to be before language itself, having been born at around the same time as culture in the anthropological sense — that’s to say, at the same time as we invented our very first tools. the fact that still today war is marked by depersonalisation and by an unsettling lack of inherent meaning indicate it’s a very primitive if not fundamental aspect of humankind.

Not much time to really add to your discussion but I just want to point out that your definition of war sounds synonymous to team sports. Are they necessary? Not really for survival of a species. But as an expression of the human conquest over one another? I am sure there will be people out there that do think it is necessary to make them whole.

And do you mean is war ‘necessary’ (and if so? Necessary for what exaclty? Necessary to resolve conflicts? feel good? feel whole as you have described earlier? to win territory and resources? for a good ol’ time of violence, rape and pillaging)… or is war ‘inevitable’? Those are two different arguments which I think seem to be blurring together here.