Debate: Can War Ever Be Justified? Arnold August vs. David Swanson

Protest: No War in Iraq 2003

Image by Dean Terry via Flickr

by David Swanson
Writer, Dandelion Salad
Let’s Try Democracy, Sept. 21, 2022
September 22, 2022

Debate set up by World BEYOND War on September 21, 2022, International Day of Peace.

Arguing that war can never be justified was David Swanson, an author, activist, journalist, and radio host. He is executive director of World BEYOND War and campaign coordinator for RootsAction.org. Swanson’s books include War Is A Lie. He hosts Talk World Radio. He is a Nobel Peace Prize nominee, and U.S. Peace Prize recipient.

Arguing that war can sometimes be justified was Arnold August, a Montreal-based author of three books on US/Cuba/Latin America. As a journalist he appears on TelesurTV and Press TV commenting on international geopolitical issues, is a Contributing Editor for The Canada Files and his articles are published world-wide in English, French and Spanish. He is a member of the International Manifesto Group.

Moderating was Youri Smouter, host of 1+1, a topical history and current affairs program on his YouTube channel 1+1 hosted by Yuri Muckraker aka Youri Smouter. He is based in Southern Belgium and is a left-wing media critic, NGO critic, anti-imperialist, an advocate for Indigenous solidarity and a Native Lives Matter movement and socially liberal thinker.

Doing tech support and timekeeping and polling was WBW Organizing Director Greta Zarro.

Participants on Zoom were polled at the beginning and end of the event on the question “Can war ever be justified?” At the beginning 36% said yes and 64% no. At the end, 29% said yes and 71% no. 

WorldBeyondWar.org on Sep 21, 2022


David Swanson is an author, activist, journalist, and radio host. He is director of WorldBeyondWar.org and campaign coordinator for RootsAction.org. Swanson’s books include Leaving World War II Behind (2020), Curing Exceptionalism: What’s wrong with how we think about the United States? What can we do about it? (2018) and War Is A Lie (2010; 2nd Ed. 2016). He blogs at DavidSwanson.org and WarIsACrime.org. He hosts Talk Nation Radio. He is a Nobel Peace Prize Nominee and U.S. Peace Prize Recipient. Support David’s work.

Excerpt:

Youri Smouter: “These are two lifelong anti-imperialists engaging in a century-long discussion that socialist revolutionaries talk about. Do we have to go through the world through peaceful means or violent means? What Black Leftists in the U.S are constantly debating about the school of thought of MLK, Jr. and Dr. Cornell West or that of Malcolm X and Kwame Ture. Non-violence versus violence.”

From the archives:

David Swanson, et al: How to Get to a World BEYOND War + Why Abolish War, by David Swanson

World BEYOND War Volunteers to Reproduce “Offensive” Peace Mural, by David Swanson

We Have A Violence Problem — Campaign Nonviolence Strives To Solve It, by Rivera Sun

30 Nonviolent Things Russia Could Have Done and 30 Nonviolent Things Ukraine Could Do, by David Swanson

Debate: Can War Ever Be Justified? Mark Welton vs. David Swanson

10 Ways We Pretend War Is Not a Crime and How to Change Them by David Swanson

David Swanson: If Everybody Matters, War Can Never Be Justified At All

David Swanson VS Pete Kilner: Is War Ever Justifiable?

David Swanson: Why End War

David Swanson: The Case for Abolishing War + Transcript

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