The Principles of International Law

Jeremy Bentham

Essay 4, Footnote #06
The Seven Years War

This brings to recollection the achievements of the war from 1755 to 1763. The struggle betwixt prejudice and humanity produced in conduct a result truly ridiculous. Prejudice prescribed an attack upon the enemy in his own territory,---humanity forbade the doing him any harm. Not only nothing was gained by these expeditions, but the mischief done to the country invaded was not nearly equal to the expense of the invasion. When a Japanese rips open his own belly, it is in the assurance that his enemy will follow his example. But in this instance the Englishman ripped open his own belly that the Frenchman might get a scratch. Why was this absurdity acted? Because we were at war,---and when nations are at war something must be done, or at least appear to be done; and there was nothing else to be done. France was already stripped of all its distant dependencies.

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PIL, Essay 4 A Plan for an Universal and Perpetual Peace.