In "War," Pirandello suggests that patriotism cannot justify the pain that is a part of war.
The fat man who injects his opinion into the train passengers' discussion uses patriotism to justify his son's sacrifice. The fat man tells the other passengers that it is natural that young men like his son "consider the love for their Country even greater" than parental love. He argues that patriotic duty is what motivates young men to make the ultimate sacrifice because they die "inflamed and happy." The man silences everyone when says that in his son's final message, the boy was "dying satisfied at having ended his life in the best way he could have wished." With this, the other passengers believe that patriotism is its own good, and justifies war's sacrifices.
However, Pirandello views this justification as limited. When the man must reckon with how his son "is really dead," patriotism does not help ease his pain. The man realizes "at last that his son was really dead- gone for ever- for ever." As the previously proud man broke "into harrowing, heart-breaking, uncontrollable sobs," Pirandello concludes that patriotism does not shield us from war's hurt. Pirandello judges patriotism as something people use to justify war. However, as seen through the fat man, it is unable to alleviate the pain that war causes.