Political Obligation and Military Service in Germany and Israel<sup>1</sup>

George Klosko

in Political Obligations

Published in print March 2005 | ISBN: 9780199256204
Published online April 2005 | e-ISBN: 9780191602351 | DOI:
Political Obligation and Military Service in Germany and Israel1

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Examines judicial decisions in Germany and Israel in order to provide a comparative test of the analysis of US Supreme Court decisions in Ch. 7. Although questions of political obligation have been much discussed by scholars, little attention has been paid to moral reasons advanced by actual states to justify the compliance of their subjects. Because in US cases, justices appeal to moral reasons most explicitly in difficult cases that concern imposing military service on conscientious objectors, the analysis focuses on this area. In spite of their important constitutional and judicial differences, Germany and Israel support military obligations along similar lines. German decisions emphasize norms of equality or fairness. Israeli Justices have generally appealed to the importance of each individual's contribution to national defence. However, in a recent decision, norms of fairness are invoked.

Keywords: ‘self-image of the state,’ Germany; conscientious objectors; fairness; Israel; judicial decisions; political obligations

Chapter.  8250 words. 

Subjects: Political Theory

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