Is self defense war?

Joab

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This is the assertion of a self defense teacher. He believes, I think correctly, that it makes little difference if your bayoneted in a foreign country or if your knifed in an alley in a big city in the USA, the results are the same-you die. So the mindset when being in a situation like this is that of a combat mindset, willing to do what it takes to destroy the enemy.

I would say in the above scenario he is right. If your dealing with a mugger with a weapon who attacks you, yes, it is prudent to see him as an enemy combatant and you need to do what you need to do to survive. This would be different if your dealing with a drunk uncle who is acting aggressive towards you, in that scenario a different mindset would be appropriate, you wouldn't want to kill your uncle who is using less than lethal force and is acting stupidly due to inebriation. What do you think? All opinions appreciated.
 

Xue Sheng

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War


1. a conflict carried on by force of arms, as between nations or between parties within a nation; warfare, as by land, sea, or air.
2. a state or period of armed hostility or active military operations: The two nations were at war with each other.
3. a contest carried on by force of arms, as in a series of battles or campaigns: the War of 1812.
4. active hostility or contention; conflict; contest: a war of words.
5. aggressive business conflict, as through severe price cutting in the same industry or any other means of undermining competitors: a fare war among airlines; a trade war between nations.
6. a struggle: a war for men's minds; a war against poverty.
7. armed fighting, as a science, profession, activity, or art; methods or principles of waging armed conflict: War is the soldier's business.

8. Cards.
a. a game for two or more persons, played with a 52-card pack evenly divided between the players, in which each player turns up one card at a time with the higher card taking the lower, and in which, when both turned up cards match, each player lays one card face down and turns up another, the player with the higher card of the second turn taking all the cards laid down.
b. an occasion in this game when both turned up cards match.

9. Archaic. a battle.
10. to make or carry on war; fight: to war with a neighboring nation.
11. to carry on active hostility or contention: Throughout her life she warred with sin and corruption.
12. to be in conflict or in a state of strong opposition: The temptation warred with his conscience.
13. of, belonging to, used in, or due to war: war preparations; war hysteria
 

kaizasosei

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I think when people start fighting over things, it's a war. But self-defence is not war because you are only doing what you need to come away in one piece and can even sacrifice or be 'defeated' and still be successful at defending yourself and or others...but i guess, the meanings can be spun and stretched some




j
 

Decker

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My 2 cents' worth:

Using the 2 scenarios you gave above, this is the difference I see:

On the battlefield, as a soldier, it is your duty to kill the enemy, because he is, as a part of a larger aggressor force, trying to do whatever to your country's sovereignty or something along those lines.
On the battlefield as a soldier, no one's gonna question or fault you for killing an enemy soldier even after he's incapacitated or disarmed, unless it's been made clear he's surrendered and is no longer an enemy combatant.

In peacetime, in that "alley", self-defense stops after incapacitating (be it disarming or restraining or knocking out) said knife-wielding mugger. Anything after that would most probably be considered assault or manslaughter.

To summarise, in war, you do what it takes to kill the enemy. In peace, you do what it takes to survive, like you yourself said. No more, no less.


Hope my expression wasn't too clumsy for my point to be seen.
 

celtic_crippler

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This is the assertion of a self defense teacher. He believes, I think correctly, that it makes little difference if your bayoneted in a foreign country or if your knifed in an alley in a big city in the USA, the results are the same-you die. So the mindset when being in a situation like this is that of a combat mindset, willing to do what it takes to destroy the enemy.

I would say in the above scenario he is right. If your dealing with a mugger with a weapon who attacks you, yes, it is prudent to see him as an enemy combatant and you need to do what you need to do to survive. This would be different if your dealing with a drunk uncle who is acting aggressive towards you, in that scenario a different mindset would be appropriate, you wouldn't want to kill your uncle who is using less than lethal force and is acting stupidly due to inebriation. What do you think? All opinions appreciated.

First off...your indicates possesion. For example: your knife. While you're is a contraction for you are which indicates something is happening or occuring to one's self. Sorry...don't take it personally...that just really irks me to know end...and I'm in a mood...lol

Now....in regards to the subject of the post...

I don't know if I'd call it "war" but I'd agree with your instructor for the most part. If you feel your life is threatened, and with good reason due to an attacker wielding a weapon, then I would say you are justified (and most likely should) use deadly force if you can not escape the situation any other way.

I would first reccomend that you make yourself familiar with state and/or local laws related to self-defense if you aren't already. They can vary from state to state. That way you'll know what the possbile criminal consequences are if you do find yourself in that situation.

Regardless, at the end of the day it boils down to who gets to go home to the wife and kids...if you know what I mean.

"In the end it matters not who is right, it matters who is left." -SGM Ed Parker.
 

MJS

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This is the assertion of a self defense teacher. He believes, I think correctly, that it makes little difference if your bayoneted in a foreign country or if your knifed in an alley in a big city in the USA, the results are the same-you die. So the mindset when being in a situation like this is that of a combat mindset, willing to do what it takes to destroy the enemy.

I would say in the above scenario he is right. If your dealing with a mugger with a weapon who attacks you, yes, it is prudent to see him as an enemy combatant and you need to do what you need to do to survive. This would be different if your dealing with a drunk uncle who is acting aggressive towards you, in that scenario a different mindset would be appropriate, you wouldn't want to kill your uncle who is using less than lethal force and is acting stupidly due to inebriation. What do you think? All opinions appreciated.

As another member, Decker, stated, I too, look at war with the defender trying to kill the invader. Country A invades Country B in an attempt to take it over. Chances are, Country B is going to be killing invaders from A.

While we can look at a self defense situation, as someone invading our personal space, trying to take something from us, and even kill us to get it, I don't have to kill that person in order to win.

IMHO, you better be darn sure that there were no other solutions to the problem before you kill someone, as the headaches that you'd get would be twice as bad, compared to if you just KO'd the guy and knocked a tooth or two out.
 

Zero

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First off...your indicates possesion. For example: your knife. While you're is a contraction for you are which indicates something is happening or occuring to one's self. Sorry...don't take it personally...that just really irks me to know end...and I'm in a mood...lol

CC, that's hilarious, I agree with your feelings re "your" and "you're" but when you said: "that just really irks me to know end" were you kidding us or did you really goof up maximus big time, when we all know it should be "no end".

Peace out dawg
Zero
 

Zero

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Joab I think I get what you or this SD teacher is trying to convey and in some aspects I agree regarding the mindset, to an degree. However, as with the other posts, I am not confident it accurately aligns with war.

Civilians and innocents are killed by the bucket load in war, are you prepared for that to be the case in an SD situation to save your own skin, ie pick up and throw a kid in the line of fire of an armed mugger etc? (not that I am saying soldiers in any way act like this but, hopefully an SD response won't result in deliberate collateral/bystander fatalities.
 

Gaius Julius Caesar

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It can be a personal war because as the SD instructor pointed out, dead is dead.

It can also be like modern war because you cant always kill a hostile.

My late Sempai was in the Military and he liked to say, you hit the threat untill there is a cessation of all hostilities.

He could surrender, he could be incapacitated or he could be dead but you want it to stop.

But one can not equate it to being in a state of war, with constant danger.
 

celtic_crippler

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CC, that's hilarious, I agree with your feelings re "your" and "you're" but when you said: "that just really irks me to know end" were you kidding us or did you really goof up maximus big time, when we all know it should be "no end".

Peace out dawg
Zero

BUSTED! LOL. I guess I could have tried to play it off as a play on words, but "no"....you busted me. :uhyeah:
 

still learning

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My 2 cents' worth:

Using the 2 scenarios you gave above, this is the difference I see:

On the battlefield, as a soldier, it is your duty to kill the enemy, because he is, as a part of a larger aggressor force, trying to do whatever to your country's sovereignty or something along those lines.
On the battlefield as a soldier, no one's gonna question or fault you for killing an enemy soldier even after he's incapacitated or disarmed, unless it's been made clear he's surrendered and is no longer an enemy combatant.

In peacetime, in that "alley", self-defense stops after incapacitating (be it disarming or restraining or knocking out) said knife-wielding mugger. Anything after that would most probably be considered assault or manslaughter.

To summarise, in war, you do what it takes to kill the enemy. In peace, you do what it takes to survive, like you yourself said. No more, no less.


Hope my expression wasn't too clumsy for my point to be seen.

Hello, Good point..........Aloha
 

Xue Sheng

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Well I should have added this it my first post...but...you know...you no..ewe noe.... u noh... I forgot :D

self-defense

1. the act of defending one's person when physically attacked, as by countering blows or overcoming an assailant: the art of self-defense.
2. a claim or plea that the use of force or injuring or killing another was necessary in defending one's own person from physical attack: He shot the man who was trying to stab him and pleaded self-defense at the murder trial.
3. an act or instance of defending or protecting one's own interests, property, ideas, etc., as by argument or strategy.
 

Josh Oakley

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If I wage war, my goal is to win.

In self-Defense, I must merely survive.
 

morph4me

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In war the goal is to destroy the enemy and you kill him without predjudice. In self defense the goal is to go home in one piece. The use of lethal force may be justified in the situation of being assaulted with the weapon, but once you've disarmed or restrained the attacker or have gotten away safetly self defense stops. It's a minor difference, but there is a difference.
 

Em MacIntosh

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War


1. a conflict carried on by force of arms, as between nations or between parties within a nation; warfare, as by land, sea, or air.
2. a state or period of armed hostility or active military operations: The two nations were at war with each other.
3. a contest carried on by force of arms, as in a series of battles or campaigns: the War of 1812.
4. active hostility or contention; conflict; contest: a war of words.
5. aggressive business conflict, as through severe price cutting in the same industry or any other means of undermining competitors: a fare war among airlines; a trade war between nations.
6. a struggle: a war for men's minds; a war against poverty.
7. armed fighting, as a science, profession, activity, or art; methods or principles of waging armed conflict: War is the soldier's business.

8. Cards.
a. a game for two or more persons, played with a 52-card pack evenly divided between the players, in which each player turns up one card at a time with the higher card taking the lower, and in which, when both turned up cards match, each player lays one card face down and turns up another, the player with the higher card of the second turn taking all the cards laid down.
b. an occasion in this game when both turned up cards match.

9. Archaic. a battle.
10. to make or carry on war; fight: to war with a neighboring nation.
11. to carry on active hostility or contention: Throughout her life she warred with sin and corruption.
12. to be in conflict or in a state of strong opposition: The temptation warred with his conscience.
13. of, belonging to, used in, or due to war: war preparations; war hysteria
Best answer, IMO. In war, if you're a soldier, you're armed and expecting confrontation, you usually have help and are part of a group and have the responsibilities thereof.

Self-defense is defending yourself, not following orders. The parallel is "remember your training".
 

kaizasosei

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I believe that clausewitz said that war has a polical background or aspect or something like that.



















j
 
OP
J

Joab

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Thanks. The self defense teacher did not teach excessive use of force, and the use of deadly force was to be used only when your life is in danger. So, if you kick the knife wielder's knee out don't stomp on his windpipe, leave. Or wait for the police, don't want to suggest doing anything illegal...

It is the mindset I'm really addressing. To prepare yourself psychologically for self defense we were encouraged to look at self defense as war in that you do what is necessary to prevail. I would agree, although certainly endangering innocents would be out of the question, as would he.

Nobody seemed to pick up on the second point of the post which is it depends on the situation. If your dealing with a loved one, such as a drunk uncle or some close friend or relative who is emotionally distraught and takes a swing at you and perhaps connects, I would say in this context it really isn't war. True, you don't want to stand around and get pummelled, but in that situation you would likely try to restrain the person or something less drastic than an enemy combatant in a war or serious self defense situation. I think the situation is obviously very important.
 

Deaf Smith

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Joab,

As B.H. Liddell Hart said, "War is a continuance of policy by other means". He also said, “war is always a matter of doing evil in the hope that good may come of it.”

You make war to force others to change their policies, bend to your will. There are three kinds of wars, Limited, unlimited, and annihilation.

Limited war has an objective that is of smaller scope than total defeat of the enemy. You want to presuade them to change or stop something that they are doing, or not doing.

Unlimited war has the objective of defeat of the enemy, that is, their surrender.

War of annihilation is just that, total destruction of the enemy.

But self defense is survival, not war Joab. Normally its objective is not the defeat of the enemy, but to survive.

Except if you threaten my loved ones, and then it will become war, big time.

Deaf
 

Gaius Julius Caesar

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Joab,

As B.H. Liddell Hart said, "War is a continuance of policy by other means". He also said, “war is always a matter of doing evil in the hope that good may come of it.”

You make war to force others to change their policies, bend to your will. There are three kinds of wars, Limited, unlimited, and annihilation.

Limited war has an objective that is of smaller scope than total defeat of the enemy. You want to presuade them to change or stop something that they are doing, or not doing.

Unlimited war has the objective of defeat of the enemy, that is, their surrender.

War of annihilation is just that, total destruction of the enemy.

But self defense is survival, not war Joab. Normally its objective is not the defeat of the enemy, but to survive.

Except if you threaten my loved ones, and then it will become war, big time.

Deaf

Hart was paraphraseing Clauswitz.
BTW He wrote a great book on Scipio Africanus.
 

Stonecold

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Self defence is just that. The defence of your self, till you are no longer in danger. Under the law you are only allowed to use as much force as is deamed nessary to stop or subdue your attacker, not kill them.
 
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