Explain why each of the six articles in the First Section is necessary for thinking clearly about peace. See pages 93-97
What are republican governments, and why are they necessary for peace? Explain Kant’s view of what the appropriate way is of building an international league of republican governments. See page 99-105
What is the duty of hospitality? Summarize Kant’s reasoning that even people who are concerned only for their self-interest and survival in nature, and who are not moved by any higher moral concerns, are nonetheless driven in the direction of developing peaceful co-existence with others? See page 105-111
Kant identifies two very different kinds of public figures (who may be public intellectuals, or leaders, or advisors to leaders): the moral politician and the political moralist. Explain the difference between these two figures. What is the “transcendental standard of public right” (p. 126) and what are some examples of how it is applied? See pages 114-130
Kant Perpetual Peace
The first article means that peace is arrived at when all possibilities for future war have been eliminated. An agreement for peace needs to satisfy all the parties and deny them an excuse to resume hostilities (Kant, 1991, 93). Parties to a conflict need to look beyond their interests for permanent peace to be achieved.
The second article recognizes that the sovereignty of states is to be respected. There should be no reason and circumstances where one state acquires another (Kant, 94). Cases, where bigger states invade smaller ones, are unacceptable as happened with Iraq invading Kuwait in the early nineties. A state is bigger than the land on which it stands.
The third article is vital as it seeks to have nations disband standing armies. States with powerful armies are most likely to threaten or attack other states (Kant, 94). Massive amounts of public funds are used to fund armies and develop new military technology denying other sectors the much-needed funding.
The fourth article targets the use of monetary instruments like loans between states for aggression purposes. Debt should be not be structured in a way in which it gives a state justification for war (Kant, 95). The abolishment of foreign debt will promote peaceful coexistence between nations.
The fifth article bans the interference by one state into the internal affairs of another. Except for situations like the Rwandan Massacre of 1994 where serious crimes against humanity are being committed, nations should be left to deal with their issues (Kant, 96) The intelligence community is known for covert activities in other nations which go against their powers.
The sixth article is about communication and trust between nations even in times of war. It states that hostilities should not stand in the way of communication and attempts to bring the war to an end (Kant, 96). Even during the war, nations have to keep talking as they have areas of common interest such as prisoners of war, use of banned weapons, and peaceful solutions to the conflict.
Kant describes a republican government as having three basic tenets. These are the freedom for all members in the nation, equal legal access for all members, and the use of a single constitution applied equally to all members of the society. Republic governments recognize that the constitution is the supreme and only contract that the state can use to govern the people (Kant, 99-100). The power of deciding is vested in the people directly or through their elected representatives. The three arms of government are separated with none interfering with the workings of the other. The executive, the judiciary, and the legislature work together but independently.
Republican governments can be a source of perpetual peace because the decision of going or not going to war is made by the citizens who bear the greatest cost and consequences. In authoritarian states, leaders can commit a nation to war because they are immune to the negative consequences. The separation of powers ensures that war decisions are not left to the feelings and decisions of the leader.
According to Kante, war and conflict are the natural states, “just like individual men, they must renounce their salvage and lawless freedom, adapt themselves to the coercive laws, and thus form an international state” (Kant, 105). Perpetual peace can therefore be achieved by humans when they abandon the state of nature of war and conflict. A social contract of humans who have surrendered lawless and selfishly used freedoms will bring perpetual peace. An international league of republican governments will therefore have the capacity to bring about peaceful solutions to conflicts between nations. They will take away the power for arbitrary war decisions from the leaders.
The treatment of visitors and foreigners is very important. The natural laws demand the visitors are accorded hospitality. Kant summarizes the need for hospitality when he says
“Hospitality means the right of a stranger not to be treated with hostility when he arrives on someone else’s territory. He can indeed be turned away if this can be done without causing his death, but he must not be treated with hostility, so long as he behaves peaceably in the place he happens to be in”, (Kant, 105-106).
According to Kant, states are obliged to allow citizens of other states to visit or pass through. They can even engage in legal activities like commercial ones. Foreigners should not become criminals just because they are foreigners since they could be escaping persecution from their mother countries. Countries like the United State of America are an example of nations that have embraced citizens of other countries. The case of Barrack Obama whose father was a Kenyan rose to the presidency. Kante however gives a condition when he says “so long as he behaves peaceably” (Kante, 105). This is to means that the foreigner is bound to abide by the rules and regulations while in a different country for their rights to be respected. Bad relations between two governments are not a justification to mishandle foreigners.
In cases where a nation is unwilling to host a citizen of another country for any reason, this needs to be done without causing them any harm and according to the laws. And even when they have committed a crime, it means their treatment does not become inhumane just because they are citizens of other countries. Physical boundaries should not be a reason to be cruel. For instance, when Germany was divided into East and West, the border could have divided families. With the world economies interconnected the world is becoming a “global village” which means that restrictions to travel by foreigners have no place in such a scenario. Embracing universal hospitality is therefore a major ingredient of perpetual peace.
According to Kante, politicians bend all the rules in the book for personal gain. They have no limitation to how far they can go to put themselves at an advantage. They operate by the “by all cost” kind of drive which undermines peace. On this, Kante says
“there can be no conflict between politics, as an applied branch of right, and morality, as a theoretical branch of right and for such a conflict could occur only if morality were taken to mean a general doctrine of expediency, i.e., theory of maxims by which one might select the most useful means of furthering one’s advantage-and this would be tantamount to denying that morality exists” (Kant, 116).
When people are out to advance their rights, by all means, the right of others will be tramped down upon. Citizens become disadvantaged when they are unaware of the law and their rights. It makes them vulnerable to abuse by politicians. Citizens need to be conversant with the theory of rights to create an enabling environment for peace to prevail. This refers to a moral claim that is binding and ensures people are treated in certain ways by others. Understanding the spirit of the law is important as the law itself.
Citizens are predestined to abide by the laws out of goodwill as compared to duty. It means observing the laws even one is alone in the house when no one is watching. Politicians can enhance the existence of peace when they observe and respect the moral code of conduct which means not taking advantage of situations of self-gratification even when opportunities present themselves. Perpetual peace can therefore be achieved when politics and morals are in sync.
Kant, Immanuel, “Perpetual Peace: A Philosophical Sketch”, Kant: Political Writings. Edited by H.S. Reiss. Translated by H.B. Nisbet. Cambridge University Press, 1991, 93-130
Delivering a high-quality product at a reasonable price is not enough anymore.
That’s why we have developed 5 beneficial guarantees that will make your experience with our service enjoyable, easy, and safe.
You have to be 100% sure of the quality of your product to give a money-back guarantee. This describes us perfectly. Make sure that this guarantee is totally transparent.Read more
Each paper is composed from scratch, according to your instructions. It is then checked by our plagiarism-detection software. There is no gap where plagiarism could squeeze in.Read more
Thanks to our free revisions, there is no way for you to be unsatisfied. We will work on your paper until you are completely happy with the result.Read more
Your email is safe, as we store it according to international data protection rules. Your bank details are secure, as we use only reliable payment systems.Read more
By sending us your money, you buy the service we provide. Check out our terms and conditions if you prefer business talks to be laid out in official language.Read more