When the war is legitimized? What are the conditions under which judicial, doctrinal and ethical tenets legalize war? Michael Walzer contributes the theory of aggression in terms of the following six premises.
a. An international community of autonomous states persists. These states are sovereign bodies. It is these states rather than the private citizens who are the members of this international communion of nations.
b. This international community possesses a law that institutes the rights of its members – beyond all rights of territorial unity and political supremacy.
c. The application of any form of compulsive offence or forthcoming charge of offence carried out by one state before the political supremacy or territorial integrity of another is tantamount to aggression and is considered as a criminal offence. The emphasis in this respect lies on border trespassing; conquering and physical attacks (in recent times this also incorporates low-intensity conflict situation; like insurrections and dissent movements leading to localized bloodsheds.)
d. Two forms of violent recoils are legitimized by aggression; a war on the part of the victim as a strategy of self-defence and a war of law enforcement on the pat of the victim as well as any other member of international society. The supposition inheres in the fact that the revenge may or may not be owed by the suffering party; it may be executed by some other state who is sensitive it the issue of balancing the equilibrium of the international society.
e. Aggression solely legalizes a war. The primary motive of the theory is to constrain the recurrence of a war. Some sort of injustice must have been bestowed and taken to be granted by the recipient to legitimize the application of assault.
f. The aggressor state being logistically averted could also be taken to task. It is an age old formulae that just war is a tool of punishment, though the methodology and variants of punishment have not been formalized in customary or affirmative international law. The goals of such punishment too have not been uttered – if it all it is for retribution, deterrence against any other state or reform of the original aggressor.