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Ethics and Cyber WarfareThe Quest for Responsible Security in the Age of Digital Warfare$
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George Lucas

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780190276522

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190276522.001.0001

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Genuine Ethics versus “Folk Morality” in Cyberspace

Genuine Ethics versus “Folk Morality” in Cyberspace

(p.85) Chapter 4 Genuine Ethics versus “Folk Morality” in Cyberspace
Ethics and Cyber Warfare

George Lucas

Oxford University Press

Chapter 4 describes the advantages of an authentic “moral point of view” (Kurt Baier) over customary moralities like realism and relativism. Just war doctrine is offered as an example of a perspective intended to provide broad, general (universal) guidance which has, however, been mistakenly “relativized” by emphasizing its authority as stemming from its parochial origins in Western culture and Christian theology. These supposed cultural and historical limitations on its authority are removed, however, when the moral philosophy of Kant, Rawls, and Habermas are employed to set just war theory within the context of public rational discourse about moral norms, particularly about the requisite procedure for justifying exceptions to such norms. When recast in this broad, transcultural context, just war theory’s central criteria and necessary conditions for justification of war (jus ad bellum) and governing its proper conduct (jus in bello) are found to recur in many other contexts, as well as in all of the world’s cultures and historical epochs. As a result, a more compelling case can be made for applying this reasoning regarding exceptions or exigencies to cases of conflict and competition in the cyber domain (jus in silico).

Keywords:   just war theory, jus ad bellum, jus in bello, jus in silico, public sphere, Habermas, Rawls, Kant

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