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The field of military ethics has generally been attentive to emerging trends in modern warfare. Cyber, robotics and AI, for example, have inspired an abundant and flourishing literature. One trend, however, has been largely overlooked: the emergence of special operations as a prominent instrument of statecraft. Drawing extensively on historical cases and first-hand experience, the authors of this book call attention to qualities inherent in special operations – and special operators – that challenge the moral framework which has long informed conventional military operations. Moral theorists will find this analysis provocative, while practitioners – those who conduct or oversee special operations and have an interest in the moral wellbeing of special operators – can put the authors' insights to practical use. Those who simply view with fascination the opaque world of special operations will find this book illuminating.
Few thinkers have had as much impact on contemporary philosophy as has Alvin Plantinga. The work of this quintessential analytic philosopher has in many respects set the tone for the debate in the fields of modal metaphysics and epistemology and he is arguably the most important philosopher of religion of our time. In this volume, a distinguished team of today's leading philosophers address the central aspects of Plantinga's philosophy - his views on natural theology; his responses to the problem of evil; his contributions to the field of modal metaphysics; the controversial evolutionary argument against naturalism; his model of epistemic warrant and his view of epistemic defeat; and his recent work on mind-body dualism. Also included is an appendix containing Plantinga's often referred to, but previously unpublished, lecture notes entitled 'Two Dozen (or so) Theistic Arguments', with a substantial preface to the appendix written by Plantinga specifically for this volume.
The dominance of logical empiricism's verification principle in the middle part of the twentieth century forced philosophy of religion almost entirely out of the philosophy curriculum, and, with a few notable exceptions, few philosophers willingly identified themselves as Christians. However, logical empiricism collapsed under the weight of its own principles, and in the spring of 1980 Time magazine reported that in a “quiet revolution in thought and arguments that hardly anyone could have foreseen only two decades ago, God is making a comeback. Most intriguingly, this is happening not among theologians or ordinary believers … but in the crisp, intellectual circles of academic philosophers, where the consensus had long banished the Almighty from fruitful discourse.”
Alvin Plantinga, one of those who had played a role in the demise of the verification principle, was identified by Time as a central figure in this ‘quiet revolution’. In fact, the article went so far as to label him the “world's leading Protestant philosopher of God.” Being singled out in this way by arguably the world's foremost news magazine is made all the more remarkable by the fact that, at the time, Plantinga was a professor of philosophy at a small Calvinist college, whose most important work was yet to come.
The intervening years since Time's report have seen Plantinga emerge as one of contemporary Western philosophy's leading thinkers of any stripe.
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