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International Law and Armed Conflict MA Course Lecture: Conduct of Contemporary Warfare.

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Presentation on theme: "International Law and Armed Conflict MA Course Lecture: Conduct of Contemporary Warfare."— Presentation transcript:

1 International Law and Armed Conflict MA Course Lecture: Conduct of Contemporary Warfare

2 Laws of War Jus ad bellum (law towards war)  limits resort to armed force  UN Charter, Article 2(4) and Chapter VII Jus in bello (law in war)  moderates conduct of armed hostilities  Geneva conventions (1949, 1977)  Hague Conventions (1899; 1907)

3 Jus ad bellum  UN Charter - Art. 2(3): Settle disputes peacefully - Art. 2(4): no ‘threat or use of force’  Article 2(4) prohibition as jus cogens - no derogation from peremptory norms - two exceptions: * self-defence (Article 51) * UNSC authorised under Chap VII

4 What constitutes self-defence?  Protection of nationals? US v. Grenada (1983) Panama (1989), Israel v Uganda (1976).  Anticipatory self-defence? Israel (1967), Iraq (1981), US (2003)

5 Collective security in the Charter  Article 39:The Security Council shall determine the existence of any threat to the peace, breach of the peace, or act of aggression and shall make recommendations, or decide what measures shall be taken in accordance with Articles 41 and 42, to maintain or restore international peace and security

6 Rise of Humanitarian Intervention  CW cases: India v East Pakistan (1971), Vietnam v. Cambodia (1978), and Tanzania v. Uganda (1979).  post CW: Kuwait (1990), FRY (1992), Somalia (1992), Haiti (1994), Bosnia (1995), Liberia (1997), Sierra Leone (1997), Albania (1997), East Timor (1999)  UNSC tendency to link humanitarian crises to threats to the peace but fails to justify link  Kosovo (1999): NATO states legitimate intervention on grounds of humanitarian necessity. BUT intervention condemned by Russia, China and some NNA states.

7 UN High Level Panel Report  Seriousness of threat  Proper purpose  Last resort  Proportional means  Balance of consequences

8 Jus in bello  prohibition on ‘unnecessary suffering’  Lieber Code (1863): principle of ‘military necessity’  Targeting of civilians and civilian objects is prohibited  creates unilateral and non-reciprocal obligations, and as jus cogens, there is no derogation

9 LOAC trends and challenges  Increasing scope and force of law  Shift in focus: from combatant to civilian suffering  Cluttered battlefields and non- military partners  Insurgent ethics and ‘lawfare’

10 Civilian shields

11 LOAC and COIN: US approach  Firepower culture  Reading Fallujah  World opinion: 70-90% negative  No-strike lists, CDEM and JAGs in the CAOC  New checkpoint TTPs

12 Symbolism of Fallujah

13 LOAC and COIN: US approach  Firepower culture  Reading Fallujah  World opinion: 70-90% negative  No-strike lists, CDEM and JAGs in the CAOC  New checkpoint TTPs

14 LOAC and COIN: UK approach  Doctrine of minimal force  Strict interpretation of LOAC  Application of English criminal law  Learning lessons from operations: clarifying noncombatants

15 War of competing narratives  Narrative express ideals and interests, are more emotive than analytical  Military operations should support development of “compelling narrative” about course & consequence of a conflict  From eliminating enemy assets to undermining enemy narratives

16 Narrating the “good war”

17 Enforcement of LOAC

18 Law as an enabler  Building international legitimacy  Mobilising enduring domestic support  Liberal script for war (JIM)

19 The legitimacy imperative  “Grand bargains” in WTO, NPT and UNSC  Domestic trust of int. legal institutions  Legitimacy umbrellas for IGO/NGO partners

20 Challenges  Enemy will engage in “lawfare”  Emotion & enemy narratives  Narrative management and the media cycle


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