an evaluation of the philosophy of just war within the framework of transhumanism

September 5th, 2023


wars are an aspect of the history of humanity, which unfortunately cannot be written in golden letters, resulting in the victory of the strong and the harm to people as a constant among a thousand different results. the same wars also include states having a say against each other throughout history, the desire to obtain a place due to its importance, and the so-called rulers who pursue all these desires unconsciously.

when it comes to wars, those of us who are on the side of peace always prevailing, perhaps squint our eyes and then reveal our anger towards all kinds of people and institutions that cause the occurrence of war. however, the necessity to make a doctrinal analysis by getting rid of all these emotions and accepting the reality of the existing war is deemed necessary for the present study. at this point, with the rush to clean the dirty face of wars to some extent, a concept is born: just war.

the concept of just war and the philosophy behind the concept have been in a state of flux throughout history, defined in different ways by each speaker, with various commonalities at certain points, but when we look at the present day, it has evolved in a direction where its impact is not felt very much. especially with the establishment of the united nations, it is possible to characterize it as a not very balanced concept that has almost lost its influence, but tends to resurface at some points.

in addition to this, there have been recent changes in human existence based on the development of science and technology, as well as the evolution of human beings from the position of the created to the position of the creator, and the emergence of a new movement influenced by humanism, which is a gift of the age of enlightenment. it is a philosophy that we can call transhumanism, which in essence aims to equip human beings with superior features and to add new and human-created beings to the world.

perhaps, with the blending of the philosophy of just war, which has been on the agenda since ancient times, and transhumanism, which is at the opposite point and continues its development rapidly with every moment of the future, it comes to mind that some inquiries should be made about the balance of war and peace in the future. for this reason, it is planned within the scope of this study to first address what the philosophy of just war means to us with its historical process, then to draw a framework for transhumanism, and then to leave open-ended areas with the aim of creating new discussions rather than a conclusion. according to this plan, it is essential to first say some words about just war.

the adventure of the philosophy of just war

when we try to look at the essence of  philosophy of just war, the data takes us to the medieval period, but the classical period also comes into our field of attention, taking into account that there were various ideas that caused philosophy of just war to exist not only in that period.

when we look at the thoughts that took place in the classical period and somehow influenced the philosophy of just war, it is possible to gather them under the following three headings: jewish, roman and germanic. (johnson, p.6) however, since it is not possible to exclude the thinkers of the ancient greek period and their arguments from all of these, plato’s approach that violence should be limited based on the view that the purpose of the wars -which he calls conflicts- fought only between the greek sites is to restore peace is seen to be related to the philosophy of just war. (ereker, p.5) in addition, it would not be wrong to say that plato laid the foundations of today’s warrior-civilian distinction with the argument that it was certain minorities who caused the conflicts. (bainton, p.37)

when we look at the jewish tradition, especially the statements in the old testament clearly carry an element of hard-edged nationalism, and the element of violence is felt very intensely with the orders to slaughter the men of the communities other than those close to them and to plunder others as they wish. in this tradition, especially wars in which god is believed to be present are seen as justified by the legitimizing aspect of god, and temporary wars, which can be described as the wars of kings independent of god, which is a legitimizing factor, are stated to have a very humane structure. (bainton, p.46) as a result, the violence resulting from the actions in wars legitimized by god is justified.

when we look at the roman practice, justifiable reasons for war such as defense, reclaiming an unjustly taken place, and punishing evil attract attention, and in terms of authority, there is also the view that a lawful and legitimate authority can use violence on behalf of the state. (johnson, p.7-8) in addition, the practice of enslavement in roman practice sets an example for us with the absence of the use of force in war, since the captives captured in wars are used in this manner without being killed.

in the case of germanic culture, the knightly tradition comes to the fore directly, and according to this tradition, the distinction between knights and non-knights transforms itself into a kind of warrior-civilian distinction. as a result of the interaction of this tradition, which can be expressed as a secular structure and one of the secular sources of philosophy of just war, with the church tradition, it has had an impact on the content of philosophy of just war. (johnson, p.9)

after these periods, it is seen that religion increases its influence on philosophy of just war and especially st. augustine, who is considered as the founder of the related philosophy, gives a way to this adventure. however, it should be noted that the statements of st. augustine’s mentor st. ambrose, who put forward the obligation of love of neighbor in the christian religion and the duty to protect him in the event of unjustified damages, constitute the basis of philosophy of just war. (johnson, p.9)

in his work, which is the source of the philosophy of just war, st. augustine generally evaluates the wars of god, which he considers to be absolutely just. according to him, in order for any war other than the wars of god to be considered justified, it must first have a just cause, the war in question must be waged by a legitimate authority, and finally, there must be good faith. (ereker, p.8) with regard to the concept of good faith discussed here, st. augustine’s statement that the purpose of a war is to achieve peace (st. augustine, p.687) is almost equivalent, but nevertheless, this concept of good faith and st. augustine’s thoughts can be interpreted in different ways by some. considering the statements of the philosopher, who identifies the concept of legitimate authority with god, it is seen that he is not interested in who is killed in war, but why. (ereker, p.10)

for a long period after st. augustine, the philosophy of just war was not examined due to the complexity of the political situations in the world, but in the 11th and 12th centuries, especially sanctions such as the “peace of god” and the “truce of god” influenced this philosophy. according to the peace of god, the immunity of religious officials from war contributed to the distinction between warriors and civilians; according to the truce of god, certain regulations were introduced with prohibitions on when war could be waged. in addition, the prohibition of the use of certain weapons such as crossbows in warfare also contributes to the related philosophy. (sichol, p.61) the scattered ideas in church law were gathered by gratian in his “decretum”, in which the conditions under which christians could go to war and who had immunity in these wars were specified. (johnson, p.13)

in the 13th century, we encounter thomas aquinas with his political dimension to the philosophy of just war, and according to him, three conditions must be present for a just war to occur: a just cause, an authority to conduct the war from a single center, and good faith. (st. aquinas, § i-ii, q 40, a i) having listed these conditions, aquinas argues that the just war status of defensive wars does not even need to be discussed, and in addition to this, he seeks the existence of the act of punishment in order for wars of aggression to be justified. moreover, the punishment of a crime against public order can only be carried out by an authority, which shows that it can only be the aforementioned authority that initiates wars. (st. aquinas, § ii-ii, q 64, a iii) in addition to the conditions of a just cause and a legitimate authority, the condition of good faith is also sought and aquinas states this condition with the following statements: “…nevertheless, as stated above (a ii) the slaying of a sinner becomes lawful in relation to the common good, which is corrupted by sin. on the other hand the life of righteous men preserves and forwards the common good, since they are the chief part of the community. therefore it is in no way lawful to slay the innocent….” (st. aquinas, § ii-ii, q 64, a vi) finally, he does not see any illegality in the killing of innocents under certain conditions, but he emphasizes that there is illegality in killing enemies when they are engaged in non-military work. (finnis, p.287)

in the modern period, the point at which the philosophy of just war has clearly arrived can be expressed as being the subject of international law (ereker, p.13). in the transition from the medieval to the modern period, those who worked on the philosophy of just war opened new doors with the ideas they put forward and acted as a kind of bridge. francisco de vitoria, one of these bridge builders, stated that religious differences between the parties would not be among the causes of just war and that it would not be possible for the empire to show a just cause of war with the effort to expand its territory. (pagden, p.302) in addition, unlike his predecessors, vitoria addresses the issue of who decides whether a just war is justified or not, and states that the justification of a war can be questioned by all citizens and that citizens can even refrain from participating in a war that they do not think is justified. (pagden, p.306) another name of this period, francisco suarez, has a similar point of view to vitoria, but in a wink to the present day, he states that the state of occupation after the war can be continued in order to ensure peace and tranquility. (akal, p.16) likewise, suarez, like other just war theorists, accepts the accidental killing of innocents during war, in other words, the double effect. (ereker, p.19) and when we look at what hugo grotius, who is seen as one of the founders of international law, which we will mention lastly for this period, mentioned about the just war theory; it is seen that he counts the situations that are not the causes of just war as “illusory reasons” and these are listed as follows: fear, the desire for more fertile land, the attempt to take what others have by claiming it for oneself, the effort to subjugate under the pretext of doing good, the belief that the emperor or the church commands, personal interests, and finally the fight for the independence of the subjugated people. (grotius, p.156-160) in addition, he emphasizes that even a just war will have limits by saying “…there are limits to revenge and punishment…” (grotius, p.229)

while the developments regarding the just war theory are constantly being renewed in the historical process, on the other hand, different views on both the unnecessity and inadequacy of this theory take their place in the historical arena. accordingly, looking at niccolo machiavelli’s approach at first; “war is justified for those for whom it is necessary, and weapons are sacred because they are the only hope” can be used as a very good summary. (machiavelli, b.xii) here, it is the security of the country that is paramount and the people behind it should not even be discussed. as ereker states, “justifying war in the name of the nation state or national interest has been the main determining phenomenon of the post-machiavellian or modern period.” (ereker, p.23-24) from another point of view, humanist pacifists are on the side of the inadequacy of just war theory and erasmus, who can be taken as an example, states that all the wars fought in europe were unjust and that the war should be fought against the turks, who were the common enemy, not among themselves. however, after this statement, he still questions whether we cannot think that turks are also human beings. (bainton, pp.131-133) in general, humanist pacifists agree that states should give up their expansionist ambitions. (bainton, p.127)

in the 17th century, the name of thomas hobbes appears and it is seen that he characterizes inter-state relations as the “state of nature” and states that everyone fights with everyone else to gain power due to the absence of any order in this situation, and with these views, it is seen that he is a continuation of machiavelli’s thoughts. (doyle, p.113) hobbes likewise calls the state of nature in which people were in before leviathan as the state of nature; however, he states differently that the state of nature between states is a bearable process and that the state of war can also bring profit to states. (yurdusev, p.47)

in the 18th century, the search for a universal peace emerged, and at this point, names such as william penn and eymeric cruce embraced the belief that peace could be achieved in the presence of a universal assembly above the states. cruce, in particular, seeks the reconciliation of the christian and islamic worlds, which he sees as the two great religions in the world, and puts the pope in the first place and the turkish emperor in the second place in the idea of the assembly he puts forward. (bainton, p.180) however, the most resounding thoughts about peace in this century are put forward by immanuel kant, and he expresses the ideas that just war can never be justified and that the use of war as a means to achieve peace is also problematic. in order to get out of this dilemma, kant thought of the establishment of a world state, but at the same time he was concerned that this world state would become despotic and destroy human rights and freedoms. (yurdusev, p.53) as a result, for kant, who evolved from the idea of a world state to the idea of establishing a peaceful union due to various concerns, it is always the reason that will prevent war. (bainton, p.182)

in the 19th century, the discussion of the philosophy of just war took a back seat, and instead, there was a view that no limitations could be imposed on the situations that might arise in the event of war by means of such things as principles. according to prussian general carl von clausewitz, some limitations to be imposed in wars are related to the level of civilization of the states involved in the war, and it is only in this context that they can be reconciled with waging wars with less violence than the destruction in the wars of barbarians. (clausewitz, p.21) however, there are a number of developments that emerged in this century that will actually be a source for the future. in particular, the st. petersburg declaration of 1868 regulated the prohibition of certain weapons and this declaration was adopted by the la haye conferences in 1899 and 1907. (ereker, p.28)

in the 20th century, the la haye conference in 1907 regulated many rules not on the justification of a war, but on the conduct of war. at this point, regulations such as the distinction between civilians and combatants, proportionality in actions, and keeping prisoners away from the battlefield appear as an extension of the theory that has been advanced for years. (o’brien, pp.170-172) while the aforementioned regulations draw a framework for us about the destructiveness of war, with the outbreak of world war i, interest in the rules regarding the resort to war increases and this increase shows its concrete form with the league of nations. on september 24, 1927, the general assembly banned wars of aggression, and on august 27, 1928, the treaty of paris or the briand-kellog pact, signed by fifteen states, accepted the obligation not to resort to war. (ereker, p.29-30) after world war ii, the united nations regulated the resort to war, and article 2, paragraph 4 of the united nations charter prohibits the use of force, but article 51, which has recently been discussed, regulates the exception in cases of self-defense.

although the debates on the philosophy of just war seem to have ended in the last century, they started to be discussed again in the second half of the 20th century with the impact of the reactions to the vietnam war. (walzer, p.929) there is a consensus among recent just war theorists that the theory transcends moral ideals and has both idealist and realist characterizations. in addition, with the development of science and technology, these theorists are interested in nuclear war and the deterrence of nuclear weapons. (ereker, p.33) in this period, names such as michael walzer, robert tucker, william o’brien, paul ramsey come to the forefront, but the just war theory in this century is not limited to the arguments put forward by these individuals. however, it can be clearly stated that in this period, the framework of international law is much more prominent for just war theory.

when we come to the end of this adventure, it is possible to say that today, states can go to war in self-defense. for this reason, just war theory can be seen as outdated. however, as can be seen in the title of this paper, the world order is moving into a different era, and there are indications that it may be possible to fight not only with people and weapons, but also in other ways. at this point, there is uncertainty as to whether the just war theory will re-emerge. however, before discussing this, it is necessary for the comprehensibility of the following discussions to enter into a definition in which we can indicate common points with what we have learned from the adventure.

just war – jus ad bellum – jus in bello

as mentioned, it is always easier to draw a conceptual framework in order to clarify the issue. accordingly, it is planned to first define the concept of just war and then to specify the content of the two main concepts used in just war theory, namely jus ad bellum and jus in bello.

when we talk about just war, we are referring to the conditions under which the use of force for political purposes can be justified and all practices that aim to limit the use of force even when it is justified. (ereker, p.2) it can be deduced from this that there are two sides that constitute just war: whether war is justified in certain situations and the justification of the use of force in war. these two sides actually constitute two principles.

according to the principle of jus ad bellum, various criteria are set out for the justification of a war, and these criteria are generally considered as a just cause, legitimate authority, good faith, proportionality, the aim of peace, war as a last resort and the chances of success.

when these criteria are analyzed, the just cause criterion has the most important place. looking at the adventure of philosophy of just war, it is not possible to talk about a just war without a just cause. when evaluated in terms of just cause, wars of defense are considered to be in accordance with the philosophy of just war, but some argue that wars of aggression can also be based on just cause. the situations in which wars of aggression are considered to be justified are the retrieval or punishment of an evil that has been done, a crime that has been committed or a right that has been usurped.

another criterion, legitimate authority, basically refers to the authority that has the power to represent the sovereignty of the state. considering the ideas at the basis of the phenomenon of the state, the acceptance that a person or group of persons other than the authority equipped with the powers delegated by the individuals constituting the society has the ability to wage war would reveal arbitrariness. and this arbitrariness would negatively affect the philosophy of just war in connection with the already controversial concept of war. therefore, in order to talk about just war, there must be the existence of a legitimate authority.

when it comes to the criterion of good faith, the public interest approach, which has the potential to provide collective benefits rather than the subjective interests of individuals, comes to the fore. however, it is important to note here that the expansion of a country’s borders cannot be included under the umbrella of public interest. since this would involve the unjust acquisition of territory belonging to another state rather than the public interest, it would be necessary to talk about an occupation rather than a just war. however, in reality, there are examples of (so-called) justified wars or interventions in the recent past, as there is no other option but aggression to ensure peace. personally, the criterion of good faith behind all these interventions is crippled from the very beginning.

as for the criterion of the chances of success, at this point, it is obvious that it is unnecessary to consume resources and expose people to danger that may result in death for no reason in case the desired situation does not occur from the very beginning. in order to be able to talk about a just war, action should be taken with the guidance of the estimated inferences made about the consequences of the intervention in question, and if these analyzes already show a failed result, it should not be started at all. in the philosophy of just war, not only the individuals on the side seen as the enemy, but also the individuals who are citizens within the state should be considered.

on the issue of proportionality, it should be clearly stated that the excessive use of force by states with different levels of power in the world against the weaker state does not comply with the criterion mentioned here; in addition, such disproportionate use of force calls into question the good faith in this situation and raises doubts as to whether the aim is really peace. it should not be forgotten that war is a method of last resort and the goal is always to achieve lasting peace. although the use of war as an instrument of peace creates an irony in itself, this is the current approach to limiting the use of force in the current situation.

according to the jus in bello principle, the justifiability of the use of force during wartime comes into question, and there are two criteria shaping this principle: civilian immunity and proportionality.

the criterion of civilian immunity, as the name suggests, includes issues such as the ability to distinguish between combatants and civilians, the identification of innocents, and the treatment of prisoners. first of all, non-combatants, civilians or innocents are those who must be excluded from being targets for a war to be considered justified. killing them, or using force to kill them, or harming them, is a behavior that does not fit into the philosophy of just war. however, in some cases, the harming of these people is accepted as inevitable, the distinction between combatants and civilians cannot be fully made, and at this point, “double effect” is mentioned. accordingly, the killing of civilians is justified by the accidental killing of civilians, even though there is no intention to kill civilians during the war. in addition, there are different perspectives on the situation of prisoners during the adventure of the philosophy of just war, but in my opinion, the situation in which they are in due to the negative effect of being in the hands of the opposing forces, which has left the state of fighting, is sufficient for them to be punished, and they should be treated like a civilian from now on.

with regard to the proportionality criterion, it is stated that it is different from the criterion under the other principle and that the purpose here is determined by limiting the use of violence during war.

as a result, just war refers to the justifiable use of force between the parties, while the principle of jus ad bellum seeks to limit the situation before the occurrence of this act and jus in bello seeks to limit the situation after the act has taken place. it is seen that the situations called war are almost non-existent today; however, various actions called by different names such as interventions and operations take place. whether all these are justified or not is primarily determined by the legislation and organs of the united nations, but all kinds of international law are of interest. however, it should be noted, the wars mentioned above are being replaced by different situations with the development of science and technology. in fact, in my opinion, it is obvious that the united nations, international law and, moreover, the science of law itself are in a state of uncertainty in the face of this new situation. in order to illuminate this uncertainty with some questioning, it would be appropriate to first define the situation we are in.


with the recent technological developments, there are situations such as the inclusion of certain features above the known human being, and indeed, a superhuman existence beyond the known human being appears on a wide scale, from the smallest drug intervention to the creation of limbs with robotic features. in addition to the rapid advancement of technology, this development and superiorization of human beings also creates side effects from different perspectives, and with these side effects, discussions on different disciplines arise. additively, in addition to the development and superiorization of humans, new entities are also emerging from scratch; various artificial intelligence products, sometimes dependent on human intervention and sometimes autonomous, have also entered our lives. the fate of both these superior human beings and artificial intelligence beings, especially within the legal order that deals only with human behavior, is still not fully determined. at this point, transhumanism emerges as a clear philosophical approach, and an explanation of the concept in question is deemed necessary for the continuation of the study.

in order to initiate discussions on transhumanism, it is naturally necessary to mention the philosophy of humanism, which is at the core and foundation of the concept. humanism, again, as the name suggests, is an approach that puts human beings at its center and is concerned only with the state of being human. (abbagnano, p.763) the aim of humanism can be summarized as the development of the basic characteristics of the human being at its center. (bostrom, p.4)

transhumanism is defined by demir as follows: “transhumanism is a movement of thought that suggests that technology and science should be utilized in order to increase the physical and cognitive abilities of human beings and to eliminate undesirable aspects such as aging and disease.” (demir, p.96) transhumanism envisages three stages in which the characteristics of human beings are carried to higher levels. the first of these is a nanotechnology-based product to increase the capacity of the human body, and the second involves the search for a cure for aging and death in order to prolong life. the third is the phase of reaching the level of the superhuman with the introduction of computers and therefore artificial intelligence. (jones, p.9) at this point, it should be clearly stated that while humanism draws attention to the maximization of people’s own capacities without any external intervention and thus maximizing their basic characteristics; with transhumanism, it is desired that human beings, who have the quality of creation in the created-creator dichotomy, will now reach the level of creator by going beyond their known basic characteristics with the interventions to be made to humans.

looking at both the historical past and the process of philosophical approaches, it is clear that people have never ended their search for happiness. however, in this process, different views have been put forward about what happiness is and what constitutes it. at times, reaching god was seen as happiness, and at other times, with the utilitarian approach, the happiness of the most people was called the highest level. however, when we look at transhumanism, self-satisfaction, happiness in life and, perhaps most importantly, self-realization are seen as the source of happiness. these can only be realized by extending the human lifespan to a length that can realize itself, losing the meaning of death and reaching the highest level of tools within the body on the way to self-realization. (hansell & grassie, p.39)

at this point, it seems especially necessary to talk about the rush for immortality. again, the demand for immortality, which is at the forefront of people’s quest in the historical arena, is tried to be met with transhumanism, primarily by extending the life span far beyond the normal. in addition to this, especially gene-based studies to cure diseases that are considered fatal are easily seen among the stages of this immortality rush. however, beyond all these, another kind of immortality quest is designed as the transfer of people’s minds to an artificial intelligence. here, the continuation of a person’s existence is linked to the phenomenon of mind, and with the concern that the human body cannot continue to live in common with the mind in question, the replacement of the body in question emerges as a solution. however, this solution brings us to a very different existence and this is called post-human by max more. (more, 2004) in addition to the desire to achieve immortality by transferring the mind to a technological body, it also brings us beings with “super intelligence” by increasing the mind in question to levels far above what is known. although these desires and expectations are defined by some as an effort to create technological monsters, the aim of transhumanism is clearly the development and improvement of human beings in every aspect. (demir, p.97)

in addition to moving humans to advanced levels, it is also necessary to talk about artificial intelligence entities created by humans, but which do not contain a part of human beings in their existence. with the rapid development of technology, artificial intelligence, which has entered our lives and academic studies at the same speed, is still unknown. nabiyev defines artificial intelligence as follows: “artificial intelligence is the ability of a computer or a computer-controlled machine to perform tasks related to higher mental processes.” (nabiyev, p.33) artificial intelligence is an entity that is created by humans but becomes autonomous after a certain point. this autonomous feature requires it to be recognized as a person in the legal system, that is, as a subject of law, and in the light of possible future developments, legal systems should be organized and developed to respond to all these.

transhumanism is seen as a transitional phase, especially on the way to posthumanism. with the existence of immortal, super-intelligent post-humans that will emerge with posthumanism, various changes will emerge, especially in the legal system and the approach to rights. although there are approaches that pursue the pursuit of good and happiness, the possibility of post-humans being used by those in power with malicious intentions is still valid. this is where the point that can be linked to the philosophy of just war is seen, and the fate of the situations that will occur if states use these post-humans to protect their benefits and interests both raises a question mark and remains uncertain. for this reason, within the scope of this study, it is aimed to clarify this uncertainty to some extent by putting forward various ideas and at the same time to generate questions from different perspectives.


considering all the information provided in the previous chapters, the aim of the study is to make some evaluations. especially as mentioned before, the aim here is to create a discussion environment rather than reaching a conclusion. for this reason, it is also seen as the right method to make a matching effort first.

as mentioned, there are two main concepts within the philosophy of just war: jus ad bellum and jus in bello. an intersection of transhumanism with the criteria within these concepts is considered by me as good for systematic progress.

if we start with jus ad bellum, the first criterion we encounter is just cause. considering the trans-human, post-human and artificial intelligence entities that will emerge within the framework of transhumanism, and which should naturally be included within the legal system, the just cause criterion can be seen within the framework of the acquisition of these entities that will constitute the future of the world. accordingly, the possibility of a power struggle between states based on science and technology is seen as a very high probability, and it will be discussed whether the acquisition of the power in question can be seen as a just cause. science and technology are developments that have always been necessary for human beings, but also provide various benefits to states through the development of human characteristics. the question arises as to whether these benefits can or should be equally utilized by everyone and every state. considering the justification of the interventions made in order to obtain various resources today, it pushes us in a negative direction regarding the justification of obtaining science and technology and related developments in the future. states realize their investments, manpower and other reasons and developments independently of each other. this makes the intervention of others unjustified under the principle of state sovereignty.

in addition, there is also the case of self-defense against possible cyber-attacks, which can be considered as a just cause. in order to repel the attacks directed by states against each other, there have been many opinions in the historical process that the defensive war in question is a just war. based on all these, it would not be wrong to say that the defenses in question can be evaluated within the framework of the just war theory, since the change in the environment and nature of the attack will not change the fact that it is an attack. at this point, it would be appropriate to evaluate the defense together with other criteria. in particular, how responding to a cyber attack with old-fashioned means of warfare would comply with the criteria of proportionality etc. opens up a wide debate.

when an evaluation is made about legitimate authority, which is another criterion, the transhumanism approach can be shown on the legitimacy of the authority in question. especially, as the recent steps towards the protection of personal data will show us, the possibility of interference with the free will of the votes at the center of democratic and fair elections, which are necessary for the formation of authority, comes to the fore. the development of science and technology, as well as the fact that the internet is able to intervene so much in our daily lives, raises doubts as to how freely the votes that constitute the authority here are cast. as such, it comes to mind to ask whether it is possible to talk about the legitimacy of the authority in question, which is elected by votes that are not given with a free will. at the same time, the question of how and in what way we will be able to determine that this authority is legitimate and at the same time that the wills have attained the freedom demanded also arises, and for this, it is also questioned whether the existence of a structure above the states is necessary or sufficient for the solution.

one step further, the criterion of good faith is introduced, and the public interest also attracts attention as a kind of package program. in the new world order and legal system that will emerge with transhumanism, i am personally concerned about the status of a concept such as public interest, whose boundaries are already controversial. the use of such a concept, which is open to such a broad interpretation, within the scope of the good faith criterion, contrary to the criterion, with bad faith, clearly leads us to an uncertainty as to whether it is a justified war or not. another point comes up here in terms of those who constitute the public. in addition to the natural and legal entities who are the subjects of law and who are called persons in law, a process towards the addition of new persons awaits us, and the signs of this process are now both coming to light and constituting the subject of various studies. in this process, and eventually with the inclusion of new persons, it will be another matter whether these persons will be included in the public body that constitutes the concept of public interest. in the event that the public covers such a large community, whether the public interest will act according to the majority, and at the same time, the discrimination that may arise when the benefit of the human beings, which will constitute the majority in the first place, is taken into consideration against the newly included persons, will bring another problem.

one step further is the criterion of proportionality. according to this criterion, the balance of power between states comes to the fore a little more, and it is seen as a great possibility that the gap in the power between states will widen with transhumanism. as in the old way, the construction, purchase, etc. of a combat vehicle is carried out within a certain period of time, but especially developments in science and technology have the ability to increase the power of states unevenly. at this point, the emergence of mega powers in the world order is naturally expected. there is no good point of view that a war between these mega-powered states and others would be a just war. in addition, it is my opinion that the criteria of pursuing the goal of peace, seeing war as a last resort and the chance of success of war will not change much within the framework of transhumanism.

considering another principle, the jus in bello principle, the use of force in time of war is evaluated and two criteria are assessed: civilian immunity and proportionality.

the first consideration of civilian immunity raises questions about how to distinguish between civilians and combatants. in particular, when people’s characteristics are raised to unpredictably high levels, doubts about whether they are involved in the war come to mind, and at this point, there are concerns about what will be done to determine this. in the event that a person with superior abilities determines the fate of the war with some methods without being in the battlefield, perhaps even on the territory of the other belligerent state, how this person will be evaluated creates some fear as well as concern.

when the criterion of proportionality comes into play, the proportionality of the force to be applied as a result of this distinction, as well as the means used during the war and the characteristics of the people should also be evaluated within the scope of this criterion. the gap in the power of states will also widen considerably in terms of the capabilities of those who fight during war. people who have been accepted as having certain standards until now are now going beyond the standards and there is no limit to this. the use of people with very superior abilities that we have seen in movies so far during war will never bring a proportional approach, and at the same time, the interventions normally made to the combatants will have to be re-evaluated according to the people in these different scales.

in the light of all this, in conclusion, it should be said that the concept of war has been discussed a lot in the historical arena, various approaches have been put forward on the existence of a just war, and when a certain point was reached, regulations were introduced to end wars and to allow this in very exceptional cases, and there was a period when what was to be said about both war and just war was exhausted. however, with new developments, the emergence of power-based conflicts and the unregulated development of science and technology, it is clear that the concept of war and the philosophy of just war will be on the agenda again. at this point, it is our duty to work and even work hard to prepare certain frameworks within all possibilities and thus to prevent possible situations in advance. i hope that this study will open a ground for discussion…


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alicio erdogan