chapter  6
32 Pages

Intervention in Kosovo

In the first part of this chapter, I will set out the historical background to NATO’s 1999 intervention in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (FRY), describing the competing claims of national self-determination, history, and abuse on both the Serbian and Kosovo Albanian sides of the conflict over Kosovo. In the second part of this chapter, I will set out Walzer’s analysis of NATO’s resort to force as written in his essay, “Kosovo.” Then I will consider whether the war met the jus ad bellum criteria as specified in my framework as developed in Chapters 3 and 4. I find that the intervention met the criterion of just cause, despite simultaneous subjective justice and competing claims of victimhood by the Serbs and Albanians. The criterion of legitimate authority was also met robustly. However, a determination that last resort, proportionality, likelihood of success, and right intention were satisfied is more problematic. I argue that there are good reasons to find the satisfaction of these criteria wanting and, therefore, that it would be difficult to call the 1999 intervention a just war. Finally, in the conclusion to the chapter, I will explain how my theoretical framework leads to a different understanding of the justice and injustice of NATO’s intervention than Michael Walzer’s framework as developed in Just and Unjust Wars.