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Old 3rd May 2017, 11:38 PM
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Default International Law

I took a course in International Ethics as a component of Philosophy, at Deakin uni. Being an atheist by that time helped in navigating my way through 'the epistemological and methodological challenges' and actually thinking about the basis for morality and ethics for the first time, daring to, having to , now emancipated from theocratic dogma.

The required text was International Ethics,: Concepts, Theories and Cases in Global Politics, Mark R. Amstutz 1999.

In the pursuit of understandings it is a good thing for peeps to be a little informed on this important subject also. One shouldn't be daunted, leaving it to the experts, texperts. And what is Trump's expertise?

I wanted a place to share this article criticising the US strike on Assad's air base in unilateral reaction to his (pretty much established as perpetrated) use of chemical weapons.

Canada's Trudeau has praised the US for the strike.

Craig Martin, scholar in International Law, its bases and norms, says the US strike weakens international law, invoking the slippery slope argument.

The Huffington Post
Craig Martin, Contributor
Professor of Law

Canada’s Support For U.S. Strikes On Syria Harms International Law
Canada should not support vigilante violence against criminal regimes.

'In the immediate aftermath of the American missile strike against Syria, Prime Minister Trudeau announced that Canada “fully supports” the U.S. in its “limited and focused action to degrade” the Syrian government’s chemical weapons capability. Many Canadians appear to think that this was the right call, given the heinous nature of the chemical weapons attacks in Syria. But the U.S. missile strikes violated international law, and weakened the international rule of law. Canada’s swift and strong support for those unlawful acts will in turn do further harm to the international law system. That is not at all consistent with Canada’s traditional support for international law. It was not necessary, and the Canadian government should re-consider such support for future American unilateral attacks.'

A worthwhile article,

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/...b084f59b49fa8a
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Last edited by Strato; 3rd May 2017 at 11:41 PM.
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Old 4th May 2017, 11:05 AM
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Darwinsbulldog Darwinsbulldog is offline
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Default Re: International Law

Seems to me that any law, including international law, has to have jurisdictional boundaries.
1. Legislative
2. Executive [including enforcement]
3. Judiciary.

In IL, all three are pretty shacky. There is the UN, of course, and the international court of Justice, but enforcement is wobbly.

There is no UN Armed Forces as such. Member states contribute units for peace-keeping missions [and rarely, in enforcement missions, like the Korean War]. The UN tries to pick troops who are seen by both sides as politically neutral. This usually puts a premium on Scandinavian member states armies for most potential conflicts.

Usually UN forces deployed have simply awful ROE's. And usually, they are very thin on the ground.

The whole thing needs to be re-thought out, including perhaps an international army, selected and trained to be loyal to the world, and not any faction, block, ideology, religion or special interest.

Second, respect for the UN should be absolute, which means any lethal force used against UN troops should be met with massive retribution. The situation as it stands is that in most UN missions, the UN troops are used as target practice. I saw a lot of Un troops get wounded and killed in Cyprus, because asshole Greek Cypriots and ass hole Turkish Cypriots kill the Scandinavian UN troops [who had no interest in the conflict either way]. The British of course, could not supply peace-keepers because they too had an interest in the game. [Although British civilian and military infrastructure was used: logistics, medical, etc].
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Old 5th May 2017, 01:22 PM
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Default Re: International Law

Quote:
Darwinsbulldog said View Post
Seems to me that any law, including international law, has to have jurisdictional boundaries.
1. Legislative
2. Executive [including enforcement]
3. Judiciary.

In IL, all three are pretty shacky. There is the UN, of course, and the international court of Justice, but enforcement is wobbly.

There is no UN Armed Forces as such. Member states contribute units for peace-keeping missions [and rarely, in enforcement missions, like the Korean War]. The UN tries to pick troops who are seen by both sides as politically neutral. This usually puts a premium on Scandinavian member states armies for most potential conflicts.

Usually UN forces deployed have simply awful ROE's. And usually, they are very thin on the ground.

The whole thing needs to be re-thought out, including perhaps an international army, selected and trained to be loyal to the world, and not any faction, block, ideology, religion or special interest.

Second, respect for the UN should be absolute, which means any lethal force used against UN troops should be met with massive retribution. The situation as it stands is that in most UN missions, the UN troops are used as target practice. I saw a lot of Un troops get wounded and killed in Cyprus, because asshole Greek Cypriots and ass hole Turkish Cypriots kill the Scandinavian UN troops [who had no interest in the conflict either way]. The British of course, could not supply peace-keepers because they too had an interest in the game. [Although British civilian and military infrastructure was used: logistics, medical, etc].
Would they be loyal to the "world" or loyal to the UN? Giving the UN a private army will not help with these conflicts. Especially when you consider that the UN has historically not done that great a job of mediating conflicts and is riven with selfish power blocs and superpowers. I mean look at who is on the UN Human Rights council at the moment, Saudi Arabia!

I think the best scenario would be to properly equip and support UN peacekeeping forces and have ROE that actually allow them to preempt threats rather than just responding to them. Of course this would require the support of big countries, which is not guaranteed if the conflict is in a developing country.
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Old 5th May 2017, 01:50 PM
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Default Re: International Law

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WesternGeo said View Post
Would they be loyal to the "world" or loyal to the UN? Giving the UN a private army will not help with these conflicts. Especially when you consider that the UN has historically not done that great a job of mediating conflicts and is riven with selfish power blocs and superpowers. I mean look at who is on the UN Human Rights council at the moment, Saudi Arabia!

I think the best scenario would be to properly equip and support UN peacekeeping forces and have ROE that actually allow them to preempt threats rather than just responding to them. Of course this would require the support of big countries, which is not guaranteed if the conflict is in a developing country.
Of course, I am not unaware of the pitfalls. Which you so ably described. Where would one find enough people to be objective enough to to be loyal to humanity as a whole, rather than some national or religious or cultural grouping. Even worse, how could one get most member states to surrender a little of their own sovereignty or interests for the common good? How could UN military units fight with such a diverse mix of languages and military techniques and procedures.

How do we define peace[1], fairness, equity, democracy, etc, etc. ??

[I] I am defining peace here, not only as an absence of formal war, but also irregular conflicts [eg terrorism], and injustices and one-sided violence or exploitation of peoples. eg North Koreans starving to fund teh nuclear ambitions of Kim. Or beheading someone for not believing in the right magic man, or a hundred other stupidities.

I agree that the prevention would be better than fighting. But historically, as we know, it is difficult to get member nations to commit to action until many atrocities and deaths have already occurred, and often, not even then.
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Old 6th May 2017, 11:45 PM
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Default Re: International Law

If not for NATO, Putin would take over the whole of the Ukraine, the Baltic states and then Scandinavia via Norway. He would have Europe if he could.

I will quote from the text International Law, Mark R. Amstutz.

'It is significant that international law has established a category of law that is binding apart from the consent of states, thereby recognizing the limitations of consent as a basis of political morality. This type of international law - known as jus congens - refers to peremptory norms that are authoritative because the norms are inherently valid. Such norms, rooted in the values and practices of civilized society, include prohibitions against piracy, slavery, terrorism and genocide. To some extent, the Tokyo and Nuremberg tribunals that prosecuted Japanese and German military officials for crimes against peace and humanity were based in part on this tradition of international law.

Although moral intuition, rational construction, and consent can each contribute to the development and articulation of international political morality, political morality must ultimately be grounded in norms that transcend human experience.'

This last bit is a Christian apologetic. Mark R. Amstutz was professor of political science at Wheaton College, a Christian institute in Illinois, one of the many of its kind in the US, from such lofty halls of learning like Wheaton and Houghton to your Bob Jones 'University'...

http://www.wheaton.edu/About-Wheaton...tional-Purpose

There are also the concepts, jus ad bellum (Just War Principle) and jus in bello (Rules of Engagement) within international law.
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Old 7th May 2017, 08:09 AM
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Default Re: International Law

Ultimately we are dealing with new creatures which have arisen out of the tribes of human evolution. They are now called "States", where recognised by other "States". They do not have morality, but rather they have "interests", however democratic they may be internally.
International law regulates the conduct between these behemoths. However in terms of conflict, international law allows for the intervention of a foreign power in aid of the government in a civil war, but as has been pointed out above, not in aid of any rebel faction, even if they form a defacto government or state in part(s) of the country.
Trump's action lends some support to the rebel groups and thus changed the calculus of the conflict slightly. Very very slightly.

Edit: In terms of the norms of international law, the German and Italian military interventions in Spain during the civil war were of course in support of a rebel faction but these acts were not called out as breaches of international law because of the pliant nature of Britain and France at the time.

Arguably there is at least some justification for what Trump did in that otherwise a significant breach of international law would pass with barely a comment. In the bigger picture however, the formenting of rebellions here and there is bound to lead to enormous suffering and death. And yet this is what happens because States do not have morality, they have interests, and those interests sometimes conflict with the interests of other states, and the human welfare of its own residents and people of other countries.
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Last edited by wadaye; 7th May 2017 at 08:14 AM.
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Old 7th May 2017, 11:08 AM
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Default Re: International Law

Quote:
There are also the concepts, jus ad bellum (Just War Principle) and jus in bello (Rules of Engagement) within international law.
Sure. And you get some compliance just from having a principle of law. BUT you actually need enforcement and judiciary to get high levels of compliance.
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Old 7th May 2017, 11:32 AM
Madame Tarot Madame Tarot is offline
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Default Re: International Law

Everyone seems to have forgotten the basics of survival against incursions.

The right of might prevails.

In the old days communities built fortifications for refuge and armed them with the best they had.

Now, with long distance aircraft and missiles the fortifications (boundaries for protection against threats) have to be expanded.

The USA or anyone other group can be pro-active or reactive or a bit of both and they can recruit like minded mates.

The USA, for example, is not just a land mass anymore, it is a world wide financial empire so it has no land mass boundaries.

No matter who is the elected Pres of the USA they will defend their financial empire at the source of the threat, not on home soil, they have to shape up or lose their worldwide financial empire.

Other countries are faced with either taking sides or risk being collateral damage and getting no help when they need it.

The right of might prevails.
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Old 8th May 2017, 01:52 AM
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Default Re: International Law

The Geneva Conventions apply universally, despite any state's declining to be signatory to them. They embody moral norms.

In The Republic, Plato's ideal of the state and civil society, he has Socrates propound a social hierarchy based on a division of labour conceived as in accordance with natural law. Plato's is a patriarchal order.

Ruling and guiding Plato's exemplar socio-economic-political system is the Philosopher-King, the Guardian, the elite class represented by the metal gold, the very few set apart as rigorously trained in morality and higher education for thirty years and founded worthy, qualified to serve, sublimating all self interest for the common good, safeguarding the stability and enduring strength of the state.

This is like the vile caste system still unofficially operating in India.

However, upon this concept I advance the fanciful idea that prospective leaders of a state, to even stand for election, should be found qualified in ethics, law, the Social Sciences, more than in politics or economics.

We have Donald Trump, Vladimir Putin, Assad, Erdogan, Orban, le Pen, manifestly unqualified and devoid of these understandings in the humanities. These are a far cry from Plato's Guardians.

Kim Jong-un himself doesn't believe in the doctrine of juche. For him life is meaningless. He wants to go out in a blaze of glory, leaving no survivors among his servile populace.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Juche

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Geneva_Conventions
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Last edited by Strato; 8th May 2017 at 02:39 AM. Reason: patriarchy
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