The English philosopher John Stuart Mill expressed the same sentiment in the nineteenth century:Dave Kopel
War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded
state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth war is
much worse. The person who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing
which is more important than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature and
has no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better
men than himself.8
Active pacifism always resounds in my heart, but the practice seems to hinge on others protection in order for a person to hold the view. What of this paradox?
Hat tip to John for the article.