National Interests and Altruism in Humanitarian Intervention

Part of the SpringerBriefs in Ethics book series (BRIEFSETHIC)


In the following chapter I will discuss in detail how realist and cosmopolitan theories approach the motivation for humanitarian intervention. The first sub-chapter will clarify why and to what extend realism assigns considerable importance to national/self-interests in the decision making process surrounding the question of whether to intervene in a humanitarian crisis or not. The second sub-chapter will make an argument for the prevalence of altruism as the primary motivation for humanitarian intervention from a moralist point of view. This chapter will facilitate the understanding of the qualitative research presented in the subsequent chapter where the motivation for post-1990 humanitarian interventions will be presented.


Social Contract Humanitarian Intervention National Interest Political Decision Maker Western Government 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.War & Defence StudiesKing’s College LondonLondonUK

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