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Encyclopedia > Casus belli

Casus belli is a modern Latin language expression meaning the justification for acts of war. Casus means "incident", "rupture" or indeed "case", while belli means "of war". Latin was the language originally spoken in the region around Rome called Latium. ...

It is often misspelled and mispronounced as "causus belli" since this resembles the English "cause" (and a different Latin word, causa {cause}). "Casus belli" is also pronounced this way because the term is used with the meaning of "cause for war", instead of "case of war" (notice that "case" comes from Latin "casus").

Despite the apparent age that the use of Latin confers on it, the term did not come into wide usage until the late nineteenth century with the rise of the political doctrine of jus ad bellum or "just war theory".[citation needed] Informal usage varies beyond its technical definition to refer to any "just cause" a nation may claim for entering into a conflict. As such, it has been used both retroactively to describe situations in history before the term came into wide usage and in the present day when describing situations when war has not been formally declared. This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Jus ad bellum (Latin for Justice of War; see also Just War Theory) are a set of criteria that are consulted before engaging in war, in order to determine whether entering into war is justifiable. ... The doctrine of the just war has its foundations in ancient Greek society and was first developed in the Christian tradition by Augustine in Civitas Dei, The City of God, in reaction to the absolutist pacifist strain of Christian ethics based on the doctrine of Turn the other cheek espoused...

Formally, a government would lay out its reasons for going to war, as well as its intentions in prosecuting it and the steps that might be taken to avert it. In so doing, the government would attempt to demonstrate that it was going to war only as a last resort (ultima Ratio) and that it in fact possessed "just cause" for doing so. Effectively international law today only allows two situations as legal cause to go to war. Either out of self-defense or sanctioned by the UN. Any war for another casus belli is considered illegal and as such a war crime. This page lists direct English translations of common Latin phrases, such as veni vidi vici and et cetera. ... This article or section is in need of attention from an expert on the subject. ... The crime of a war of aggression is listed in Article 5. ... In the context of war, a war crime is a punishable offense under International Law, for violations of the laws of war by any person or persons, military or civilian. ...

Proschema (plural proschemata) is the Greek equivalent term. These stated reasons may or may not be the actual reason for waging the war (prophases). The term was first popularized by Thucydides in his History of the Peloponnesian War, who identified fear, honor, and interest as the three primary real reasons that wars are waged, while proschemata commonly play up nationalism or fearmongering (as opposed to rational or reasonable fears). Bust of Thucydides residing in the Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto. ...


Reasons for use

Countries generally need a justification of some sort for attacking another country. The justification may be needed principally to galvanize support for the war internally (since citizens may not be happy about being expected to fight and die in a dubious cause), or else to galvanize the support of potential allies and reduce or avoid international sanctions or possible intervention. This has been the case for much of world history and is still the case today.

In the post World War Two era, the UN Charter has made it illegal for signatory countries to engage in war except as a means of defending themselves against aggression, or unless the UN as a body has given prior approval to the operation. The UN also reserves the right to intervene against non-signatory countries which embark on wars of aggression. In effect, this means that countries in the modern era must have a plausible casus belli for initiating military action, or risk possible UN sanctions or intervention. The United Nations Charter is the constitution of the United Nations. ... In international law, a war of aggression is generally considered to be any war for which the purpose is not to repel an invasion, or respond to an attack on the territory of a sovereign nation. ...

Historical examples

Spanish-American War

The US navy ship USS Maine sank in the Havana Harbor from an explosion whose cause remains controversial. Critics such as Gore Vidal have claimed that the explosion was a purposeful act to create a phony casus belli for the US to attack the Spanish. This gave the United States the political cover to have an excuse to attack Spain triggering the Spanish-American War because the US government accused the Spaniards of being responsible for the explosion[citation needed]. USS Maine (ACR-1), the first ship of the United States Navy to be named for the state of Maine, was a 6682-ton second-class pre-dreadnought battleship originally designated as Armored Cruiser #1. ... Eugene Luther Gore Vidal (born October 3, 1925) (pronounced , occasionally , , etc) is an American author of novels, stage plays, screenplays, and essays. ... Combatants United States Republic of Cuba Philippine Republic Spain Commanders Nelson A. Miles William R. Shafter George Dewey Máximo Gómez Emilio Aguinaldo Patricio Montojo Pascual Cervera Arsenio Linares Ramón Blanco Casualties 3,289 U.S. dead (432 from combat); considerably higher although undetermined Cuban and Filipino casualties...

World War I

A political assassination provided the trigger that led to the outbreak of World War I. The assassination in June 1914 of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria at Sarajevo in Austria-Hungary by Gavrilo Princip, a Yugoslav nationalist from Bosnia, Austrian subject and member of Young Bosnia, was used by Austria-Hungary as a casus belli for declaring war on Serbia. “The Great War ” redirects here. ... A plaque commemorating the exact location of the Sarajevo Assassination On June 28, 1914, Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria, heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne, and his wife Sophie, Duchess of Hohenberg were shot to death in Sarajevo, capital of Bosnia and Herzegovina, by Gavrilo Princip, a member of Young... This article or section does not cite any references or sources. ... Map of Bosnia and Herzegovina (Sarajevo) Coordinates: , Country Bosnia and Herzegovina Entity Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina Canton Sarajevo Canton Government  - Mayor Semiha Borovac (SDA) Area [1]  - City 141. ... Austria-Hungary, also known as the Dual monarchy (or: the k. ... Gavrilo Princip (Serbian Cyrillic: Гаврило Принцип, IPA: ) (July 25, 1894) – April 28, 1918) was an ethnic Serb, but later proclaimed to be a Yugoslav Nationalist[1], with links to a group known as the Black Hand (Црна Рука or Crna Ruka) and Mlada Bosna, who assassinated Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria and his wife... Yugoslav refers to: Yugoslavia Kingdom of Yugoslavia Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Yugoslavs This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists other pages that might otherwise share the same title. ... Young Bosnia (Serbo-Croat: Млада Босна / Mlada Bosna) was a revolutionary youth organization in Bosnia and Herzegovina in the early 20th century. ... Austria-Hungary, also known as the Dual monarchy (or: the k. ... Anthem Serbia() on the European continent() Capital (and largest city) Belgrade Official languages Serbian 1 Recognised regional languages Hungarian, Croatian, Slovak, Romanian, Rusyn 2 Albanian 3 Government Semi-presidential republic  -  President Boris Tadić  -  Prime Minister Vojislav KoÅ¡tunica Establishment  -  Formation 812   -  Kingdom established 1217   -  Empire established 1346   -  Independence lost to...

The Russian Empire started to mobilise its troops in defence of its ally Serbia, which resulted in the German Empire declaring war on Russia in support of its ally Austria-Hungary. Very quickly, after the involvement of France, the Ottoman Empire and the British Empire, five of the six great European powers became involved in the first European general war since the Napoleonic Wars. (see Causes of World War I) The subject of this article was previously also known as Russia. ... Motto Gott mit Uns (German: God with us”) Anthem Heil dir im Siegerkranz (unofficial) Territory of the German Empire in 1914, prior to World War I Capital Berlin Language(s) Official: German Unofficial minority languages: Danish, French, Frisian, Polish, Sorbian Government Constitutional monarchy Emperor  - 1871–1888 William I  - 1888 Frederick... For other uses, see Ottoman (disambiguation). ... The British Empire in 1897, marked in pink, the traditional colour for Imperial British dominions on maps. ... Combatants Austria[1] Portugal Prussia[1] Russia[2] Sicily  Spain[3]  Sweden United Kingdom[4] French Empire Holland Italy Naples [5] Duchy of Warsaw Bavaria[6] Saxony[7] Denmark-Norway [8] Commanders Archduke Charles Prince Schwarzenberg Karl Mack von Leiberich Gebhard von Blücher Duke of Brunswick â€  Prince of Hohenlohe... For the war in general, see World War I. The Causes of World War I were complex and included many factors, including the conflicts and antagonisms of the four decades leading up to the war. ...

World War II

In his autobiography Mein Kampf, Adolf Hitler had advocated in the 1920's a policy of lebensraum ("living space") for the German people, which in practical terms meant German territorial expansion into Eastern Europe. Mein Kampf (English translation: My Struggle) is a book by the German-Austrian politician and dictator Adolf Hitler which combines elements of autobiography with an exposition of Hitlers Nazi political ideology. ... Hitler redirects here. ... Lebensraum (German for habitat or living space) was one of the major political ideas of Adolf Hitler, and an important component of Nazi ideology. ... This article is about the Germans as an ethnic group (unlike Ethnic German, which is the article on the German diaspora). ...

In August 1939, in order to implement the first phase of this policy, Germany's Nazi government under Hitler's leadership staged the Gleiwitz incident, which was used as a casus belli for the invasion of Poland the following September. Since Poland's allies Britain and France honoured their alliance and subsequently declared war on Germany, the invasion of Poland marks the start of World War II. National Socialism redirects here. ... Gliwice Radio Tower. ... Polish Defensive War of 1939 Conflict World War II Date 1 September - 6 October 1939 Place Poland Result Decisive German and Soviet victory The Polish September Campaign or Defensive War of 1939 (Polish: Wojna obronna 1939 roku) was the conquest of Poland by the armies of Nazi Germany, the Soviet... Combatants Allied powers: China France Great Britain Soviet Union United States and others Axis powers: Germany Italy Japan and others Commanders Chiang Kai-shek Charles de Gaulle Winston Churchill Joseph Stalin Franklin Roosevelt Adolf Hitler Benito Mussolini Hideki Tōjō Casualties Military dead: 17,000,000 Civilian dead: 33,000...

In 1941, acting once again in accordance with the policy of lebensraum, Nazi Germany invaded the Soviet Union, using the casus belli of pre-emptive war to justify the act of aggression. Nazi Germany, or the Third Reich, commonly refers to Germany in the years 1933–1945, when it was under the firm control of the totalitarian and fascist ideology of the Nazi Party, with the Führer Adolf Hitler as dictator. ... Combatants Germany, Romania, Finland, Italy, Hungary, Slovakia  Soviet Union Commanders Adolf Hitler Wilhelm Ritter von Leeb Fedor von Bock Gerd von Rundstedt Heinz Guderian Günther von Kluge Franz Halder Maresal Ion Antonescu C.G.E. Mannerheim Giovanni Messe, CSIR Italo Gariboldi, ARMIR Joseph Stalin Kliment Voroshilov Semyon Timoshenko Fyodor... A preemptive attack (or preemptive war) is waged in an attempt to repel or defeat an imminent offensive or invasion, or to gain a strategic advantage in an impending (usually unavoidable) war. ...

The Soviet Union also employed a manufactured casus belli during World War II. In November 1939, shortly after the outbreak of hostilities between Germany, Britain and France, the Soviet Union staged the shelling of the Russian village of Mainila, which it blamed on the Finns. This manufactured incident was then used as a casus belli for the invasion of Finland. In 1998, Russian President Boris Yeltsin admitted that the invasion had in fact constituted a Soviet war of aggression. Location of Mainila on the Karelian Isthmus (according to the borders prior to the signing of the Moscow peace treaty). ... Combatants Finland Soviet Union Commanders Carl Gustaf Emil Mannerheim Kliment Voroshilov, later Semyon Timoshenko Strength 250,000 men 30 tanks 130 aircraft[1][2] 1,000,000 men 3,000 tanks 3,800 aircraft[3][4] Casualties 26,662 dead 39,886 wounded 1,000 captured[5] 126,875 dead... Boris Nikolayevich Yeltsin (Russian: ) (February 1, 1931 – April 23, 2007[1]) was the first president of the Russian Federation, serving from 1991 to 1999. ... In international law, a war of aggression is generally considered to be any war for which the purpose is not to repel an invasion, or respond to an attack on the territory of a sovereign nation. ...

Additionally, some sources theorize that the US government had prior warning of the impending Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, but chose to ignore it in order to shock the country out of its prevailing mood of isolationism. By allowing the Japanese "stab in the back" to take place, this theory effectively contends, the US administration would be handed the strongest possible casus belli which would ensure the full and undivided support of the American populace for the coming war effort. The USS Arizona burning after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. ... This article is about the actual attack. ... Isolationism is a foreign policy which combines a non-interventionist military policy and a political policy of economic nationalism (protectionism). ...

Six-Day War

A casus belli played a prominent role during the Six-Day War of 1967. The Israeli government had a short list of casus belli, acts that it would consider provocations justifying armed retaliation. The most important was a blockade of the Straits of Tiran leading into Eilat, Israel's only port to the Red Sea, through which Israel received much of its oil. After several border incidents between Israel and Egypt's allies Syria and Jordan, Egypt expelled UNEF peacekeepers from the Sinai Peninsula, established a military presence at Sharm el-Sheikh, and announced a blockade of the straits, prompting Israel to cite its casus belli in opening hostilities against Egypt. Combatants Israel Egypt Syria Jordan Iraq Saudi Arabia Commanders Yitzhak Rabin, Moshe Dayan, Uzi Narkiss, Israel Tal, Mordechai Hod, Ariel Sharon Abdel Hakim Amer, Abdul Munim Riad, Zaid ibn Shaker, Hafez al-Assad Strength 264,000 (incl. ... The Straits of Tiran The Straits of Tiran are the narrow sea passages, about 3 miles wide, formed by the Sinai and Arabian peninsulas which separates the Gulf of Aqaba from the Red Sea. ... Hebrew אילת Founded in 1951 Government City (from 1959) District South Population 55,000 (2006) Jurisdiction 80,000 dunams (80 km²) Mayor Meir Yitzhak Halevi North Beach, Eilat, from southwest. ... Location of the Red Sea The Red Sea is an inlet of the Indian Ocean between Africa and Asia. ... UNEF may refer to: United Nations Emergency Force National Union of Students of France, a French students union Category: ... Sinai Peninsula, Gulf of Suez (west), Gulf of Aqaba (east) from Space Shuttle STS-40 For other uses of the word Sinai, please see: Sinai (disambiguation). ... View of the Red Sea and Tiran Island from the Sheraton Sharm hotel. ...

Vietnam War

Some historians have suggested that the Gulf of Tonkin Incident was a manufactured pretext for the Vietnam War. North Vietnamese Naval officials have publicly stated that the USS Maddox was never fired on by North Vietnamese naval forces[1][2]. Chart showing the U.S. Navys interpretation of the events of the first part of the Gulf of Tonkin incident The Gulf of Tonkin Incident was an alleged pair of attacks by naval forces of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam (commonly referred to as North Vietnam) against two American... Combatants Republic of Vietnam United States Republic of Korea Thailand Australia New Zealand The Philippines National Front for the Liberation of South Vietnam Democratic Republic of Vietnam People’s Republic of China Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea Strength US 1,000,000 South Korea 300,000 Australia 48,000... USS Maddox (DD-731), an -class destroyer was named for Captain William A. T. Maddox, USMC. She was laid down by the Bath Iron Works Corporation at Bath in Maine on 28 October 1943, launched on 19 March 1944 by Mrs. ...

Israeli Invasion of Lebanon

The casus belli cited by Israel for its June 1982 invasion of Lebanon was the attempted assassination of the Israeli Ambassador in London, which the Israeli government blamed on the PLO (although the attempt had actually been made by the PNLM, a Palestinian splinter group implacably opposed to the PLO).[3] In reality however, the invasion had long been planned by the Israelis,[4] who were concerned about the growing power of the PLO in Lebanon. Combatants Israel South Lebanon Army LF (nominally neutral) PLO Syria Amal LCP Commanders Menachem Begin (Prime Minister) Ariel Sharon, (Ministry of Defence) Rafael Eitan, (CoS) Yasser Arafat Strength 76,000 37,000 Casualties 670 17,825 The 1982 Lebanon War (Hebrew: , Milkhemet Levanon), (Arabic: ), called by Israel the Operation Peace... The Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) (Arabic Munazzamat al-Tahrir Filastiniyyah منظمة تحرير فلسطينية ) is a political and paramilitary organization of Palestinian Arabs dedicated to the establishment of an independent Palestinian state to consist of the...

Turkey and Greece

In 1995, the Turkish parliament issued a casus belli against Greece in reaction to an enacted extension of Greek territorial waters from 6 to 12 nautical miles (22 km) from the coast.[citation needed] Turkey has not removed this casus belli despite initiation of preliminary negotiations in order for it to join the European Union.[citation needed] Map of Sealand and the United Kingdom, with territorial water claims of 3nm and 12nm shown. ...

War on Terror

The casus belli for the Bush administration's conceptual War on Terror, which resulted in the 2001 Afghan war and the 2003 Iraq war, was the September 11, 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center in New York City, The Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia and the apparently intended attack on the United States Capitol in Washington, D.C.. George W. Bush administration is the administration of the 43rd president of the United States of America, 2001-present George H. W. Bush administration is the administration of the 41st president of the United States of America, 1989-1993 This is a disambiguation page, a list of pages that otherwise... The war on terrorism or war on terror (abbreviated in U.S. policy circles as GWOT for Global War on Terror) is an effort by the governments of the United States and its principal allies to destroy groups deemed to be terrorist (primarily radical Islamist organizations such as al-Qaeda... Combatants Taliban al-Qaeda IMU Hezbi Islami Afghanistan Northern Alliance United Nations NATO ISAF Commanders Mohammed Omar Obaidullah Akhund # Mullah Dadullah  Jalaluddin Haqqani Osama bin Laden Ayman al-Zawahiri Mohammad Atef  Juma Namangani  Gulbuddin Hekmatyar Bismillah Khan Mohammed Fahim Abdul Rashid Dostum William J. Fallon Bantz J. Craddock Egon Ramms... For other uses of the term, see Iraq war (disambiguation) The 2003 invasion of Iraq (also called the 2nd or 3rd Persian Gulf War) began on March 20, 2003, when forces belonging primarily to the United States and the United Kingdom invaded Iraq without the explicit backing of the United... A sequential look at United Flight 175 crashing into the south tower of the World Trade Center The September 11, 2001 attacks (often referred to as 9/11—pronounced nine eleven or nine one one) consisted of a series of coordinated terrorist[1] suicide attacks upon the United States, predominantly... “WTC” redirects here. ... New York, New York and NYC redirect here. ... This article is about the United States military building. ... Arlington County is a county located in the U.S. state of Virginia (which calls itself a commonwealth), directly across the Potomac River from Washington, DC. By an act of Congress July 9, 1846, the area south of the Potomac was returned to Virginia effective in 1847 As of 2000... The United States Capitol is the capitol building that serves as the location for the United States Congress, the legislative branch of the U.S. federal government. ... For other uses, see Washington, D.C. (disambiguation). ...

2003 Invasion of Iraq

The main casus belli cited by the Bush Administration for its 2003 invasion of Iraq was the imminent threat posed by Saddam Hussein's weapons of mass destruction programme. The administration claimed that Iraq had not conformed with its obligation to disarm under past UN Resolutions, and that Saddam Hussein was actively attempting to acquire a nuclear weapons capability as well as enhance an alleged existing arsenal of chemical and biological weapons. Secretary of State Colin Powell addressed a plenary session of the United Nations Security Council on February 5, 2003 citing these reasons as justification for military action.[1] Investigations subsequent to the invasion however, failed to establish the veracity of the administration's claims. The subject of this article is the 2003 invasion of Iraq. ... Saddam Hussein Abd al-Majid al-Tikriti (28 April 1937 – 30 December 2006) was the fifth President of Iraq and Chairman of the Iraqi Revolutionary Command Council from 1979 until his overthrow by US forces in 2003. ... For the Xzibit album, see Weapons of Mass Destruction (album). ... General Colin Luther Powell, United States Army (Ret. ... “Security Council” redirects here. ...

Casus Belli in popular culture

  • Wag the Dog is another such movie related to the topic of casus belli. In this movie, the President uses a pretext to attack Albania in an attempt to divert attention from a sex scandal with which he was involved which jeopardizes his re-election.
  • In an episode of the American sitcom Seinfeld (The Cafe), Elaine enters Jerry's apartment and sits at his table. As Jerry spies on the Pakistani restaurant, Elaine mentions casus belli in a facetious voice, explaining that she read it recently and just wanted to say it out loud.
  • In the comic book series Lucky Luke, a crazy old judge accuses two of his personal enemies of different crimes. Finally, he accuses them (using the first words he randomly finds in his lawbook) of "casus belli". Next, the two suspects try to blame each other of who actually killed this "Casus Belly".
  • In the computer game Europa Universalis and its sequels, casus belli makes an appearance. If a country declares war on another country without a casus belli, the attacking country will suffer a stability penalty.
  • In the board game Pax Britannica by Victory Games, players are limited to declaring war if they have a casus belli against the defending nation.
  • In the U.S. TV show Jericho series 1, episode 19 is titled Casus Belli (U.S. Air date 18 April 2007)
  • In an episode of the American TV show The West Wing, a member from the State Department tells President Bartlett that a US Sub illegally in North Korean waters was "Causa Bella" Cause For War.

Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith is the third episode of the Star Wars film series (but the sixth film to be produced), to be released on Thursday, May 19, 2005. ... Palpatine is a fictional character in the Star Wars universe. ... Jedi Knights and Jedi Knight redirect here. ... “Windu” redirects here. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... For the film see Canadian Bacon (movie). ... Michael Francis Moore (born April 23, 1954) is an American political-activist, a film director, author, social commentator, and political humorist. ... The CIA Seal The Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) is an American intelligence agency, responsible for obtaining and analyzing information about foreign governments, corporations, and individuals, and reporting such information to the various branches of the U.S. Government. ... This article or section does not cite any references or sources. ... A sitcom or situation comedy is a genre of comedy performance originally devised for radio but today typically found on television. ... This article is about the sitcom. ... The Café was the twenty-fourth episode of the hit sitcom Seinfeld. ... This article is about the comic book and TV series. ... Europa Universalis is a grand strategy computer game released in 2000 by Paradox Entertainment and is distributed in North America by Strategy First. ... Pax Britannica (Latin for the British Peace, modelled after Pax Romana) refers to a period of British imperialism after the Battle of Waterloo, which led to a period of overseas British expansionism. ... Current Avalon Hill logo. ... This article is about the CBS television drama. ... The West Wing is an American television serial drama created by Aaron Sorkin that was originally broadcast from 1999 to 2006. ...


  • Vidal, Gore. Imperial America: Reflections on the United States of Amnesia. Hardcover ed. Avalon Group.
  1. ^ "McNamara asks Giap: What happened in Tonkin Gulf?". (November 9, 1995). Associated Press
  2. ^ CNN Cold War - Interviews: Robert McNamara, retrieved January 23, 2007
  3. ^ Sachar, Howard M.: A History of Israel from the Rise of Zionism to Our Time, Alfred A. Knopf 1996, ISBN 0-679-76563-8, page 904.
  4. ^ "As early as January 1982, therefore, with Begin's approval, Sharon paid a secret visit to Beirut...By the following month...operational plans for the offensive were well advanced. Israeli liaison officers repeatedly visited Beirut to coordinate strategy with the Phalange. In the end, the Lebanon expedition would be the most thoroughly prepared campaign in Israel's history." - Sachar, A History of Israel, p. 903

The Associated Press, or AP, is an American news agency, the worlds largest such organization. ... is the 23rd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the AD/CE era. ...   (‎, August 16, 1913 – March 9, 1992) was a Polish-Jewish head of the Zionist underground group the Irgun, Nobel Peace Prize laureate and the first Likud Prime Minister of Israel. ...   (Hebrew: , also known by his diminutive Arik אָרִיק) (born February 27, 1928) is a former Israeli politician and general. ... The Kataeb Party, better known in English-speaking countries as the Phalange, is a Lebanese political party that was first established as a Maronite nationalist youth movement in 1936 by Pierre Gemayel. ...

See also

  Results from FactBites:
Casus belli - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (1482 words)
Casus belli is a modern Latin language expression meaning the justification for acts of war.
The official casus belli of the Soviet Union for attacking Finland in the Winter War was the shelling of Mainila.
In 1995, the Turkish parliament issued a "casus belli" against Greece for the event that the latter extends her territorial waters from 6 to 12 nautical miles from the coast.
Casus Belli - LoveToKnow 1911 (118 words)
CASUS BELLI, the technical term for cases in which a state holds itself justified in making war, if a certain course to which it objects is persisted in.
Interference with the full exercise of a nation's rights or independence, an affront to its dignity, an unredressed injury, are instances of casus belli.
These may therefore be considered as a sort of definition of casus belli in so far as the high contracting parties to them are concerned.
  More results at FactBites »



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