From Mar. 17-19, an online benefit conference entitled “What Good is Philosophy? The Role of the Academy in a Time of Crisis” raised funds to establish a center in Kiev that would support academic and civic institutions in Ukraine. Among the speakers were novelist Margaret Atwood, Ukrainian history scholar Timothy Snyder, and public intellectuals from Ukraine. CERL Advisory Council member Jeff McMahan, who delivered remarks on “What Good is Moral Philosophy?” sat down with Novaya-Europe to discuss the concept of a just war and to what extent the West is responsible for the outcome of the war. According to Prof. McMahan,
To the extent that the provision of more weapons to Ukraine helps to preserve Ukrainian sovereignty and helps to make the costs of continuing the war increasingly burdensome to Putin and the other officials in the Kremlin so that they would be willing to compromise more, then I think the effects of the provision of weapons are going to be good.
I have to add that the essential element of ending the war is that the NATO countries will make a pledge not to admit Ukraine to NATO. It’s clearly a source of paranoia for people in Russia to have NATO’s enemy forces on their border.
Jeff McMahan is a member of the CERL Advisory Council. He is the Sekyra and White’s Professor of Moral Philosophy at the University of Oxford. Read his CV here.