22 May 2024

Compute for India: A Measured Approach

Amlan Mohanty


Compute, as we explain in our primer, is used to refer to many things—the capacity to perform complex calculations, specific hardware equipment like semiconductors, or as a unit of measurement expressed in floating-point operations per second (FLOPS) that quantifies a computer’s ability to execute high-performance tasks like machine learning.

A more holistic view of compute positions it as a technology stack comprising three layers—a hardware, a software, and an infrastructure layer. Collectively, this forms what has come to be known as the “compute stack,” which may include:
  • Advanced chips (GPUs, TPUs)
  • Specialised software to run the chips (compute unified device architecture or CUDA)
  • Data centers and network infrastructure (Google, AWS, Azure)
  • Data storage and management software (Oracle, IBM, SAP)
  • Machine learning frameworks and programming languages (PyTorch)
Compute is central to the IndiaAI mission. In March 2024, the Cabinet allocated Rs. 10,372 crores ($1.3 billion) for the mission, nearly half of which, about Rs. 4,568 crores, has been earmarked to build compute capacity across the country. This demonstrates the importance of compute to India’s growing AI ambitions.

Indian Voters Are Being Bombarded With Millions of Deepfakes. Political Candidates Approve


ON A STIFLING April afternoon in Ajmer, in the Indian state of Rajasthan, local politician Shakti Singh Rathore sat down in front of a greenscreen to shoot a short video. He looked nervous. It was his first time being cloned.

Wearing a crisp white shirt and a ceremonial saffron scarf bearing a lotus flower—the logo of the BJP, the country’s ruling party—Rathore pressed his palms together and greeted his audience in Hindi. “Namashkar,” he began. “To all my brothers—”

Before he could continue, the director of the shoot walked into the frame. Divyendra Singh Jadoun, a 31-year-old with a bald head and a thick black beard, told Rathore he was moving around too much on camera. Jadoun was trying to capture enough audio and video data to build an AI deepfake of Rathore that would convince 300,000 potential voters around Ajmer that they’d had a personalized conversation with him—but excess movement would break the algorithm. Jadoun told his subject to look straight into the camera and move only his lips. “Start again,” he said.

General says he warned that Afghanistan would get ‘very bad, very fast’

Dan Lamothe

The top U.S. general in Afghanistan during the American military’s 2021 withdrawal repeatedly warned Washington that security would get “very bad, very fast” after troops departed, but the Biden administration still failed to grasp the danger in keeping its embassy open with only nominal protection, he told lawmakers investigating the war’s deadly endgame.

The China-Pakistan Axis and Indian Ocean Geopolitics

Sankalp Gurjar

The China-Pakistan axis has existed since 1963 when both countries realized that they share a common objective of limiting India’s influence. In the recent past, the axis has only strengthened with initiatives such as the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and expansion in the strategic maritime relationship. The latest development in this relationship has been the Chinese assistance to Pakistan in augmenting its submarine fleet.

Pakistan is modernizing its naval fleet and is acquiring submarines from China. Reportedly, China launched the first of eight Hangor class submarines at Wuchang Shipyard in Wuhan. As per the deal, China would build four submarines in Pakistan while the remaining four will be constructed by China in its shipyards. Apparently, Germany has refused to supply engines for these submarines and China has to find alternative sources for the engines. However, these submarines are expected to boost Pakistan’s naval capabilities.

The submarine deal is part of Pakistan’s overall naval modernization program and is an indication of the deepening China-Pakistan security relationship. The China-Pakistan relationship is described by both sides as ‘higher than mountains, deeper than oceans, sweeter than honey and stronger than steel.’ The emerging naval dimension of China-Pakistan relations is quite literally taking it ‘deeper than oceans.’ As many countries in the Indo-Pacific region are modernizing their naval capabilities, strengthening the China-Pakistan axis in the maritime domain is part of the same trendline.

How China Will Squeeze, Not Seize, Taiwan

Isaac Kardon and Jennifer Kavanagh

Testifying before the Senate Armed Services Committee in 2021, Admiral Philip Davidson, the retiring commander of U.S. military joint forces in the Indo-Pacific, expressed concern that China was accelerating its timeline to unify with Taiwan by amphibious invasion. “I think the threat is manifest during this decade, in fact in the next six years,” he warned. This assessment that the United States is up against an urgent deadline to head off a Chinese attack on Taiwan—dubbed the “Davidson Window”—has since become a driving force in U.S. defense strategy and policy in Asia.

Indeed, the Defense Department has defined a potential Chinese invasion of Taiwan as the “pacing scenario” around which U.S. military capabilities are benchmarked, major investments are made, and joint forces are trained and deployed. Taipei has been somewhat less fixated on this particular threat. But over the last decade, as the cross-strait military balance has tilted in Beijing’s favor, Taiwan’s leaders have ramped up their military spending and training expressly to deter and deny such an attack.

The threat of an amphibious invasion, however, is the wrong focal point for the United States’ efforts to protect Taiwan. China’s patient, long-term Taiwan policy, which treats unification as a “historical inevitability,” together with its modest record of military action abroad, suggests that Beijing’s more probable plan is to gradually intensify the policy it is already pursuing: a creeping encroachment into Taiwan’s airspace, maritime space, and information space. The world should expect to see more of what have come to be known as “gray-zone operations”—coercive activities in the military and economic domains that fall short of war.

As China ramps up disinformation, the U.S. is far too vulnerable - Opinion

Max Boot

MAGA Republicans often raise the fanciful specter of foreigners voting in U.S. elections. That almost never happens, because only U.S. citizens can legally vote. But foreign countries enjoy considerable leeway to influence U.S. elections. Russia took advantage in 2016 to intervene on behalf of Donald Trump, helping him eke out a narrow victory. The Kremlin appears to be gearing up another pro-Trump campaign this year.

Will China Succeed in Creating an Asian Security Order?

Richard Ghiasy and Jagannath Panda

From April 18-23 2024, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi made a three-nation tour of Cambodia, Indonesia, and Papua New Guinea. The trip is part of a packed diplomatic agenda that’s been in motion since the start of the year which looks to consolidate China’s status in Asia as the prime geoeconomic and geopolitical influencer.

Visits by leaders and other high-level officials, including from Russia, the Global South and rich European states like Germany, to China and by China’s President Xi Jinping and high-level Chinese officials to various parts of the world, particularly in the Asia-Pacific, will test the waters for China’s three world order-building projects: namely the Global Development Initiative (GDI), Global Security Initiative (GSI), and Global Civilization Initiative (GCI).

Diplomatically, politically, and economically, China has already leapfrogged ahead of other regional giants, taking its place among the global superpowers. Yet, thus far, China has been lagging in building an effective Asian security order, one naturally centered on Chinese interests. Importantly, China appears to be very aware of the complexity of promoting and developing an Asian security order: that is to say, the institutions and principles that guide security relations between states.

The U.S. Finally Has a Strategy to Compete With China. Will It Work?

Greg Ip

The new tariffs President Biden announced last week aren’t economically significant. Symbolically, they are huge.

The U.S. buys almost no electric vehicles, steel or semiconductors—all targets of the tariffs—from China. But, by adding to, rather than rescinding, tariffs imposed in 2018 by former President Donald Trump, it signals that the decoupling of the Chinese and U.S. economies is becoming irreversible.

More important, the tariffs are the final piece of an economic strategy for competing with China.

A three-legged stool

This strategy is a three-legged stool. The first consists of subsidies to build a viable technology manufacturing sector, from clean energy to semiconductors. The second is tariffs on Chinese imports that threaten those efforts. The third is restrictions on access to money, technology and know-how that could help China compete. A fourth leg, a unified economic front with allies, remains unrealized.

What We Know So Far About the Helicopter Crash That Killed Iran’s President Ebrahim Raisi


The helicopter crash that killed Iran’s president and foreign minister has sent shock waves around the region.

Iranian state media said on Monday that President Ebrahim Raisi, the country’s foreign minister, Hossein Amirabdollahian, and others have been found dead at the site after an hourslong search through a foggy, mountainous region of the country’s northwest.

Here’s what we know so far.

Who was on board the helicopter and where were they going?

The helicopter was carrying Raisi, Amirabdollahian, the governor of Iran’s East Azerbaijan province and others officials, according to the state-run IRNA news agency.

The List of Potential Suspects in the Mysterious Death of Iran’s President Raisi


Ebrahim Raisi, whose helicopter crashed in the northwest of Iran on Sunday, was both the President of Iran and a candidate jockeying to succeed the elderly actual ruler of the country, Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei. Both political positions carried an elevated risk level roughly comparable with that of traveling by air inside Iran—where aviation safety, compromised by decades of sanctions and uneven maintenance, has claimed the lives of almost as many senior Iranian officials as its shadow war with Israel, which also loomed over Raisi’s reported demise.

The cause of the crash—which also killed Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian, the governor of Iran’s East Azerbaijan province, and others—is pending investigation. But any official finding will be open to interpretation—like the fireworks that erupted in the streets over Tehran on Sunday night: were they celebrating the eve of the holiday marking the birth of Reza, known as the 8th Imam? Or the death of Raisi, the notoriously hardline President?

Suspicions abound. The crash came two months after Iran launched a massive missile and drone attack on Israel, retaliating for an Israeli airstrike that killed two senior Iranian generals in Syria on April 1. Israel’s initial response to the unprecedented direct attack on its territory was so muted as to qualify as symbolic: targeting an anti-aircraft battery guarding a nuclear facility.

Why Arab leaders aren't helping the Palestinians in Gaza


Amid the gruesome Gaza war, passions are running high throughout the Arab world. Huge Palestine solidarity protests have been occurring across the region, and this terrifies many ruling elites who fear the Palestinian issue.

They view it as dangerously destabilizing, and starting months ago, a handful of Arab states, including Egypt, Jordan, and Saudi Arabia, began clamping down on pro-Palestine activism in their own countries.

Such a crackdown in these Arab countries is no surprise and should be understood on two levels. The first applies to protests in these countries at a foundational level. The second is specific to the Palestinian issue.

Fear of political mobilization

Authoritarian regimes in general often suffer from legitimacy crises and thus see any grassroots activism and mobilization of citizens as potentially threatening. This is the case irrespective of what cause brings the people together. Most Arab governments want to co-opt and regulate such movements and prevent them from ever challenging regime-backed narratives and interests.

Who Would Benefit From Ebrahim Raisi’s Death?

Arash Azizi

Accidents happen everywhere, but not all accidents are equal. Many hours after initial news broke about an “incident” involving a helicopter carrying Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi, the country’s state media has still not confirmed whether he is dead or alive. Various state outlets have published contradictory news—Was Raisi seen on video link after the accident? Was he not? Was the National Security Council meeting? Was it not?—signaling chaos and panic. A source in Tehran close to the presidency told me that Raisi has been confirmed dead, and that the authorities are looking for a way to report the news without causing mayhem. I have not been able to independently confirm this.

Iran doesn’t seem like a country in which presidents die by accident. But it also is a country in which aircraft crash, due to the sorry state of infrastructure in the internationally isolated Islamic Republic. In previous years, at least two cabinet ministers and two leading military commanders have died in similar crashes. Raisi’s chopper, which also carried Iran’s foreign minister and two top regional officials, was passing through an infamously foggy and mountainous area in northwestern Iran. The “incident” might very well have been an accident.

Yet suspicions will inevitably surround the crash. After all, air incidents that killed high political officials in Northern Rhodesia (1961), China (1971), Pakistan (1988), and Poland (2010) are still often subject to speculation. In this case, much as in the others, one question will likely drive the speculation: Who stands to benefit politically from Raisi’s death? Even if the answer to this question does not ultimately tell us why the helicopter crashed, it could shed some light on what will come next in the Islamic Republic.

What comes after Ebrahim Raisi

Jonathan Panikoff

The death of Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi in a helicopter crash on Sunday may have shocked the Middle East and broader world, but it is rather unlikely to alter Iran’s strategic direction in either domestic or foreign policy. While Raisi held the title of president, his authority was constrained by Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, within whom ultimate power is vested in the Islamic Republic.

But even so, Raisi’s death does leave a power vacuum in Iran. Section 131 of the Iranian constitution calls for First Vice President Mohammad Mokhber to assume power next. But Mokhber is unlikely to have any meaningful influence or seek to succeed Raisi. He will instead, as long as the constitution is followed, be replaced by a successor following an election within fifty days from when Raisi’s death was declared.

For the regime, another round of presidential elections is a headache that it would almost certainly have preferred to avoid. The Guardian Council—the body that determines which candidates are sufficiently loyal enough to the Islamic Republic’s ideology to be permitted to run—thought it had in Raisi a leader who would be around to take Iran into the next generation, likely a post-Khamenei one.

A Theory of Victory for Ukraine

Andriy Zagorodnyuk and Eliot A. Cohen

The U.S. government decided to provide more assistance to Ukraine just in the nick of time. By the end of April, right before the aid package passed, the war-torn country was emptying its last reserves of ammunition and rationing artillery rounds and shells—and Ukrainian forces began to lose ground in part as a result. The $60 billion now flowing into Ukraine will help correct these disparities, providing Kyiv an opportunity to stop Russia’s offensive. The aid package also serves as a massive psychological boost, giving Ukrainians newfound confidence that they will not be abandoned by their most important partner.

But the aid package alone cannot answer the central question facing Ukraine: how to win the war. Neither can contributions from Europe and beyond, necessary as they are to keeping Kyiv afloat as the conflict drags on. What Ukraine needs is not just more assistance but also a theory of victory—something that some of its partners have studiously avoided discussing. The United States has never planned out its support for Kyiv beyond a few months at a time, even as Congress mandated the provision of a long-term U.S. strategy for its support of Ukraine as a part of the aid bill. It has focused on short-term maneuvers, such as the much-anticipated 2023 counteroffensive, rather than viable long-term strategies or aims—including a potential triumph over Russia. Until end of last year, U.S. officials refrained from even using the term “victory” in public. Similarly, the United States has generally avoided describing its goal in Ukraine as a Russian defeat. Washington’s only real long-term statement—that it will support Ukraine “for as long as it takes”—is, by itself, meaningless.

Nicholas Blanford: Hezbollah’s Struggle Against Israel

Jon B. Alterman, Leah Hickert & Will Todman

Jon Alterman: Nicholas Blanford is a Beirut based security consultant. He's also a non-resident Senior Fellow with the Atlantic Council. He's the author of, Killing Mr. Lebanon: The Assassination of Rafik Hariri and Its Impact on the Middle East and Warriors of God: Inside Hezbollah's Thirty-Year Struggle Against Israel. Nicholas Blanford, welcome to Babel.

Nicholas Blanford: Thank you, Jon.

Jon Alterman: As you've written for many years, there are a range of Lebanese attitudes toward Hezbollah. In general, in Lebanon, have the last six months been good for Hezbollah or bad for Hezbollah?

Nicholas Blanford: To be honest, it's probably the same. The division in Lebanon has been so strong and divisive over Hezbollah's weapons and its military aspirations, that what has happened in the last six months is a continuation of the political divisions of Hezbollah's intervention in Syria, Hezbollah's alleged role in the assassination of Rafik Hariri, and so on. What has been going on for the last six months is an expansion of the tensions and schisms between Hezbollah, its supporters, and other components in Lebanon that we've been seeing since at least 2005.

Putin’s lightning assault jolts Europe awake - Opinion

Frida Ghitis

It was a carefully choreographed show of force in Beijing Thursday as Russian President Vladimir Putin arrived for yet another meeting with his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping. They were all smiles.

Meanwhile in Europe, the atmosphere could have hardly felt less jovial.

On Wednesday, Slovakian Prime Minister Robert Fico was shot multiple times and gravely wounded in an assassination attempt. Fico is reportedly out of danger now, with many details about the shooting still unclear. But the dramatic event added to the foreboding sense of crisis across the region; the feeling that, as tense as the situation is, it’s time to prepare urgently, because it might turn much worse.

In the 10 days since Putin was sworn in for yet another term — his fifth as Russia’s president — his forces launched a surprise attack on northeastern Ukraine, drawing close to the country’s second largest city, Kharkiv, and capturing several Ukrainian villages.

Ukraine Vs. Russia: Who Wins A Long War?

Alexander Motyl

On whose side is time—Ukraine’s or Russia’s?

Or, to put the question more pointedly, which country is better equipped to sustain a long war?

The questions are obviously important. If time is on Ukraine’s side, then it should avoid negotiations and drag out the war for as long as possible. If time is on Russia’s side, then it should act the same way.

The Ukraine War and the Issue of Time and Sustainabilty

Answering these questions is harder than may appear at first glance.

For starters, subjective beliefs are important. Believing you can sustain a war may not guarantee that you will, but it surely makes a difference. Morale matters. But objective indices of resilience—such as numbers of soldiers, weapons, and ammunition—also matter, as does even more so their quality. Finally, a variety of domestic and international factors can also affect the ability of countries to sustain war.

Ukraine Aid Packages Leave Many Unanswered Questions | Opinion

Kevin Roberts

It didn't even last a month.

In late April, Congress waved Ukraine's colors once again while appropriating another $60 billion for the Ukraine war. Within days, though, the same people who pushed for the package on the Hill, in the White House, and throughout the Washington establishment began saying our aid wouldn't be enough for Ukraine to stop Russian advances.

They're already beating the drum for more support.

Make no mistake. My organization, the Heritage Foundation, wants Ukraine to win and America to flourish. So do the American people. What most Americans don't want, however, is for Washington to prioritize Ukraine's security to the detriment of our fiscal health and other pressing domestic priorities, such as the crisis at the southern border.

A recent poll we conducted of voters in battleground states found that three out of four respondents opposed sending more aid to Ukraine without fortifying our own border. Most (56 percent) also felt that the United States had already sent too much aid to Ukraine—and that was before this latest package passed.

Singing the Blues: the Baltics and Ukraine

Edward Lucas

Gloom, but not doom. That was the defiant message on Ukraine from this year’s Lennart Meri Conference in the Estonian capital, Tallinn. The annual security-policy shindig, named after the country’s revered first president, was notably glummer this year than last. Ukraine is suffering not only battlefield setbacks but devastating attacks on its heating and power networks. These harm the economy now and will be hard, if not impossible, to repair before winter bites.

All the more reason, therefore, to boost military aid: more weapons, of greater lethality, delivered faster. Estonia’s prime minister, Kaja Kallas, featured prominently at the conference. She noted that her country has already committed 0.25% of GDP to Ukrainian military aid for the next three years. “If all countries would do the same, it would lead to Ukrainian victory,” she said. “Ukraine is fighting, losing lives—the only thing they ask of us is reallocation of resources.”

Speaking by video link, Dmytro Kuleba, Ukraine’s foreign minister, praised Estonia as a “paragon” for its stance and help. But participants’ criticism of other countries was scorching. Only strikes deep into Russian territory will prevent the continuing assault by glide bombs, launched from high altitudes 50 miles from the front line. 

A US-Israeli Defense Treaty: The Time Has Come

Chuck Freilich & Eldad Shavit

Self-reliance and strategic autonomy have always been fundamental tenets of Israel’s national security strategy. Nevertheless, Israel’s founding father, Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion, sought a defense treaty with the United States as early as the 1950s, as a means of further augmenting its security. Prime Ministers Yitzhak Rabin and Ehud Barak gave serious consideration to a defense treaty in the 1990s and 2000s, both to offset the significant military dangers stemming from the territorial concessions that were part of the dramatic proposals for peace they made with the Palestinians and Syrians, and to assuage the deep and even existential fears these concessions engendered among Israel’s public. Counterintuitively, perhaps, Israel’s defense establishment has long opposed a formal defense treaty.

Until recently, Bill Clinton was the only president to give serious, if reluctant, consideration to a defense treaty, as the price of Rabin’s and Barak’s peace proposals (President Donald Trump briefly toyed with the idea). Indeed, the last time the United States signed a formal defense treaty with any nation – the ultimate American security commitment – was with Japan in 1960. In addition to Japan, the US has bilateral defense treaties with Australia, New Zealand, South Korea and the Philippines, as well as a multilateral treaty with NATO’s 31 members. The different treaties all vary significantly in specific content and in the actual extent of the American security commitment. By far the strongest commitment is in the NATO treaty, in which an attack on one is deemed an attack on all.

Can Hamas be killed? Northern Gaza fighting lays bare Israel’s problem

Mike Brest

Israel‘s military has returned to northern Gaza to take on Hamas several months after claiming to have dismantled the group in the area.

Rear Adm. Daniel Hagari, Israeli military spokesman, said on Jan. 8 that the army has “completed the dismantling of Hamas’s military framework in the northern Gaza Strip,” and yet he told Agence France-Presse on Friday, “Hamas was in complete control here in Jabalia until we arrived a few days ago.”

His comments, roughly five months apart, highlight the complex and difficult realities of achieving Israeli leaders’ goals of destroying Hamas militarily and removing them from their governing position.

“The combat teams of the 7th and 460th Parachute Brigades under the 98th Division expanded during the day the fighting spaces in Jabalia and deepened the operational control of the area,” the IDF said on X.

Missing the forest for the trees: The role of forests in Earth’s climate goes far beyond carbon storage

Sara Blichner, James Weber

Imagine you’re in a forest. Do you feel soft pine needles underfoot? Or perhaps droplets of rain dripping down from the understory? Is it warm and wet, or cool and dry? What does it smell like?

Every forest has its own unique environment with cooling shade and particular smells, which can vary depending on the kind of forest, and whether it’s a warm and dry summer day, or if it’s been raining. The forest scent comes from a variety of organic vapors emitted by the trees and other plants, commonly referred to as biogenic volatile organic compounds (BVOCs). It is still a bit of a mystery why the trees emit these vapors, but proposed reasons include communication with other trees, attracting pollinators, protection against herbivores, heat-stress, and acting as antioxidants.

Although forests are widely understood to be a crucial carbon sink, these vapors can also impact the Earth’s climate in surprising and opposing ways. As the world warms, understanding these complex feedbacks is an essential piece of the climate puzzle.

Cost of climate change comparable to economic damage caused by fighting a war

Oliver Milman

The economic damage wrought by climate change is six times worse than previously thought, with global heating set to shrink wealth at a rate consistent with the level of financial losses of a continuing permanent war, research has found.

A 1-degree Celsius (1.8 degree Fahrenheit) increase in global temperature leads to a 12-percent decline in world gross domestic product (GDP), the researchers found—a far higher estimate than that of previous analyses. The world has already warmed by more than 1-degree Celsius since pre-industrial times and many climate scientists predict a 3-degree Celsius (5.4 degrees Fahrenheit) rise will occur by the end of this century. due to the ongoing burning of fossil fuels—a scenario that the new working paper, yet to be formally peer-reviewed, states will come with an enormous economic cost.

A 3-degree Celsius temperature increase will cause “precipitous declines in output, capital and consumption that exceed 50% by 2100” the paper states. This economic loss is so severe that it is “comparable to the economic damage caused by fighting a war domestically and permanently,” it adds.

A Thinking and Writing Military Is a Better One

Laura M. Thurston Goodroe & Adam Lowther

It is time the services stop cutting the budgets and staff of the professional journals and military presses that allow Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines, Guardians, and civilian contributors to discuss and the debate the future of the services, the profession of arms, and how the American military can remain the best in the world. Such cuts are short-sighted and do far more harm than good. Let us explain.

I, (Adam) was once at an international meeting in Changsha, China, representing the US Air Force, when a colonel from the People’s Liberation Army approached me and said, “I read your journal. We can match your technology, but we cannot match the quality of your officers. They are much better thinkers than our own.” I knew at that moment that our professional journals Strategic Studies Quarterly and Air & Space Power Journal (ASPJ) mattered and influenced how the Chinese thought about us and themselves. In the decade since that day, ASPJ—Mandarin ceased publication along with Arabic and French editions. With those cuts went significant influence in China, the Arab world, and Francophone countries around the world.

If current 2025 budget proposals for Air University Press (AUP), the publisher of the above-mentioned journals, and National Defense University (NDU) Press, which publishes Joint Force Quarterly (JFQ) and Prism remain unchanged, operations will become virtually untenable. The circumstances are similar for Naval War College Press, Army War College Press, Marine Corps University Press, and Joint Special Operations University Press.


Monte Erfourth 


The discourse on foreign policy, especially in ideologically and morally complex contexts, necessitates a nuanced understanding beyond binary moral judgments. Historical precedents, such as World War II alliances and Vietnam War compromises, highlight the intricate balance between moral ideals and strategic imperatives. This balance is crucial in the anarchic international system, where pursuing strategic objectives often involves morally ambiguous strategic decisions. Contemporary debates, particularly regarding the Gaza conflict, underscore the tension between moral absolutism and pragmatic statecraft. This article examines the limitations of moral absolutism in war, focusing on the Israel-Hamas conflict to illustrate the necessity of strategic calculation in achieving a more equitable and peaceful international order.


Applying morality to war navigates between the realism that suspends morality during conflict and pacifism that rejects war's morality. Just war theory mediates this, setting conditions for justified war while imposing moral constraints on conduct. Morality, influenced by cultural, religious, or personal values, represents beliefs about right and wrong. Ethics, systematically studying and applying these beliefs, provides tools for decision-making in practical contexts.