There’s a lot of debate between very learned people about what constitutes a just war. And honestly, I’m not up to contributing to that debate on that sort of intellectual level. But here’s my somewhat less academic take on the issue: who fucking cares. Let’s not piss around trying to make ourselves feel good about participating in that kind of horror. Let me be clear, I am not a pacifist. Sadly sometimes war is the wisest course of action a nation can take. Bringing justice into it though, or even worse divine mandate, is a coward’s way out. Being at war (“just” or not) means being party to the creation and delivery of death, suffering and destruction. Make your goddamn peace with that or lie down in front of the tanks when they come. Anything else is simply indulging in puerile, dangerous fantasy.

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From behind: a handful of warriors flank a mage who holds high a staff in one hand and a unfurled scroll with glowing script in the other. They overlook a wondrous city (think Minas Tirith, but even more out there if you like). A magical storm gathers.
Caption: Our cause was just.
Caption: We did what we had to, to bring down a tyrant.

The same frame again. The mage has lowered his hands and dropped the scroll. Obscene magical devastation has obliterated the city.
Caption: Our cause was just.