Defending Civilians from 'Defensive Killing'

Journal of Moral Philosophy, Forthcoming

16 Pages Posted: 4 Oct 2017 Last revised: 12 Oct 2017

See all articles by Adil Ahmad Haque

Adil Ahmad Haque

Rutgers Law School; Rutgers Law School

Date Written: October 2, 2017


Helen Frowe's 'Defensive Killing' is in many respects an excellent book, full of arguments that are original, interesting, important, and often persuasive. In other respects, the book is deeply unsettling, as it forcefully challenges the belief that killing ordinary civilians in armed conflict is a paradigmatic moral wrong. In particular, Frowe argues that civilians who make political, material, strategic, or financial contributions to an unjust war may lose their moral protection from intentional and collateral harm. On this point, Frowe's arguments are original, interesting, and important but, thankfully, not persuasive.

Keywords: Civilian Immunity, War, Armed Conflict, Just War Theory, Revisionism, Helen Frowe, Liability, Forfeiture, Defensive Harm, Eliminative, Opportunistic, Exploitative, Direct Participation in Hostilities

Suggested Citation

Haque, Adil Ahmad, Defending Civilians from 'Defensive Killing' (October 2, 2017). Journal of Moral Philosophy, Forthcoming. Available at SSRN:

Rutgers Law School ( email )

United States


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