International Affairs, January 2011. ‘War and Wildlife: the Clausewitz Connection’

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International Affairs, January 2011.
‘War and Wildlife: the Clausewitz Connection’
Carl von Clausewitz might seem an unusual thinker to invoke in the name of wildlife
protection but his insights into the nature of war provide a unique perspective into
an arena that arguably poses more complex moral questions of responsibility to
protect than with humans. The increasingly dangerous world of wildlife conservation
offers a prism for examining many issues linked to sovereignty, especially in
developing countries. This study highlights how the commercial rewards of the
wildlife trade have fed into problems surrounding national security such as
corruption, sub-state insurgency and state legality. These factors have led to the
growing militarization of wildlife protection, and, in turn, raise a fundamental
question: is it ever right for an outside actor to ignore international convention to
save a species from extinction?
Author Biographies
Jasper Humphreys is Director of External Affairs of the Marjan Centre for the Study
of Conflict and Conservation, Department of War Studies, King’s College,
University of London. Formerly, he was a journalist with over thirty years of
experience, and has written for newspapers including the Times and the London
Evening Standard. He is currently writing a book that combines the fauna and history
of the Northern Cape region of South Africa.
M.L.R. Smith is Professor of Strategic Theory in the Department of War Studies,
King’s College, University of London. He is Academic Director of the Marjan
Centre for the Study of Conflict and Conservation.
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