Except, you go on to say that you think there is such a thing as a "just war" (should we take your quotes to say that you mean no war is ever just?) and that it is a war against war. This is rhetorical nonsense, and to state that you are inherently opposed to war, no matter what the consequence, outcome or morality of said war, shows your dogmatism and faith in the destructive ideology of pacifism. I note that you state that war only "usually" expands the state, which means that you recognize that waging war does not reflexively increase the powers of the state.
I am opposed to war, yes. What that means exactly depends on how you define war. If war in an organized battle of violence between states, I am against it, since I am against states, since I am against initiating force, as Rand claimed to be. As Stephan points out, you can't support a limited state (much less a warfare state, I would add) without advocating the initation of force.
And it doesn't always expand the state, though I honestly can't think of any case in which it didn't (at least while the war was on).
I like the charlatan games you play, but government qua government is not a terrorist, thieving organization, it can be and should be strictly limited by a Constitution. Just because governments operate in this way (and there is no way that our government is as bad as the rule of a ruthless gang) doesn't make gangs and government in principle morally equivalent.
"Our" government does not seem as bad as a ruthless gang because people grant it legitimacy. It needs not use active, overt violence all the time. But what gang commits as much theft as the U.S. government? What organization on earth takes by force more than $2.4 trillion a year? And what is the difference between taxation and theft? Nothing, which is why I thought Objectivists were morally opposed to taxation.
"It is not to say that revolutionaries fighting their government or people fighting to defend their homes and country from invaders are as bad as the offenders."
First of all, are you suggesting that the slaughter of American soldiers is justified, because you most certainly see them as the offenders, the invaders, and an individual soldier's failure to stand up to "this evil invasion" makes him a moral target for insurgents?
Secondly, you stating that those who have a moral case for waging war "defend(ing) their homes and country" are not "as bad" as the offenders means you think that even the most moral warriors have evil in them, that the mere fact that they wage war makes them evil, even if it is justified.
It depends on the circumstances. If a soldier is about to shoot up an innocent man, would you deny that the innocent man has a right to self-defense? Organized insurgencies, like the one in Iraq currently, usually have quite a few unsavory characters doing unsavory things.
Even when the more defensive organization in a war might be less bad, it can still be bad. (Though, I'm inclined to think that there are insurgents in Iraq who are worse than most American soldiers, in that they intentionally kill civilians.)
The American Revolution was a just cause. It was all the more just because there wasn't much of an organized American government controlling the entire rebellion. However, even here, the colonists committed grave evils, such as stealing the property of loyalists, torturing and killing some of them, and taxing people. So they did bad things, but they were certainly less bad than the British in that conflict. While many Americans did immoral things, the entire British cause in that conflict was inherently wrong.
But the Americans didn't choose to wage war. They were, for the most part, only protecting their homes, liberty and property.
If you think any force-weilding entity is an equally evil gang of thugs (which, in one form, Objectivists are naive enough to call "governments"), then by your own admission, there would be several wild gangs of thugs in an anarchist society, as opposed to one tamed, restricted and often protective gang of thugs in a minarchist one. So it's better to have fifty governments that aren't called such, than to have one government that is called such.
Does all this merely come down to a fear of the G-word, or is your position in dire need of some coherence?
There's a difference between "force-wielding," which can be justified, and an institution of aggression. Aggression, the initiation of force, is immoral. States practice this by virtue of their nature. They are monopolies of force. If what they do is indeed legitimate, then by forbidding competition –– forbidding agencies from practicing the same legitimate, justifed force -- they are committing aggression and initiating force upon competitors. If states indeed monopolize force such that competitors can't practice what the states practice, then either what the states practice is inherently immoral, or what states practice can be rightful, in which case it is inherently immoral to use force against other entities that wish to do the same. The state is the contradiction, here, not the anarchist philosophy.
Under market anarchy, there wouldn't be any agencies that monopolize aggressive violence, or practice such violence systematically -- that's what makes it anarchy. I'm not saying this is likely to happen. I'm not saying it will happen. All I'm saying, when I say I'm an anarchist, is that there's no moral justification for initiating force, for states, or for criminal gangs at all. As a libertarian anarchist with some familiarity with history and free market economics, I also think that not only is aggression immoral and unjustifiable in ethical terms, but that it is an impractical means of shaping and running society. It achieves and results in little good, much evil and great calamity. So, in practical terms, even though I don't delude myself into thinking I'll ever likely see anarchy in my life, my anarchism is simply where I'm coming from in analyzing any political issue. If a given proposal expands state violence, it is immoral and almost certainly impractical. Though I always believe coercion is immoral, I guide my practical and utilitarian outlook on life by looking at economics and history.
Now, it's possible for an immoral act to lead to the seemingly lesser of two immoral outcomes. If someone is raping a woman on the street, and I steal someone's gun to defend the woman, I might very well, and probably should, be pardoned for the offense. But I still committed a crime. Individuals might sometimes need to make these calculations in these very strange situations, but states can't be trusted to bring good out of evil. Sometimes it might seem to happen incidentally, but states shouldn't be given power to make these decisions. For example, when the North Vietnamese Communists invaded Cambodia and overturned the even bloodier, more murderous Cambodian Communists, a bean-counting analysis might indicate that more people were, on balance, better off than before. However, I doubt very much that libertarians would consider the North Vietnamese Communist regime moral or "libertarian" simply because of this historical anomoly. Governments are capable of doing good things here and there. So is the Mafia. That's does not negate the moral and economic case against the state per se, or organized crime.
In the case of this current war on terrorism, I see much immorality and little practicality, especially if the goal is protecting freedom and lives, whether American or foreign.