Episode 12 – Tom Ruys on the Exercise of Self-Defense to Recover Occupied Territory

In this episode, I speak with Tom Ruys, Professor at the Faculty of Law, Ghent University, Belgium. We discuss a debate he recently sparked with a blog post on the question of whether states my invoke the right of self-defense to justify the use of force to recover previously occupied territory, looking specifically through the lens of the recent seizure of territory in Nagorno-Karabakh by Azerbaijan in a short sharp armed conflict with Armenia. Tom and his co-author, Filipe Rodriguez Silvestre, argue that the initial occupation (in the 1988-94 conflict in the case of Nagorno-Karabakh) cannot be characterized as a continuing armed attack, and that self-defense cannot justify the use of force to recover the territory. In a responding blog post, Dapo Akande and Antonios Tzanakopoulos of Oxford argue that such a use of force can indeed be an act of self-defense, and that Azerbaijan’s actions are in fact so justified — and so we explore the competing arguments. To start things off, however, we do discuss Tom’s seminal book, ‘Armed Attack’ and Article 51 of the UN Charter, both to lay the foundation for discussing self-defense in Nagorno-Karabakh, and to explore whether any of his positions have evolved since publication of the book ten years ago. Finally, we discuss briefly his recent work on economic sanctions, and the relationship between sanctions and the collective security regime. Not to be missed!

Materials:

‘Armed Attack’ and Article 51 of the UN Charter: Evolutions in Customary Law and Practice (2010).

– “The Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict and the Exercise of “Self-Defense” to Recover Occupied Land,” Just Security, Nov. 10, 2020 (with Filipe Rodriguez Silvestre).

– “Sanctions, Retorsions and Countermeasures: Concepts and International Legal Framework,” in Research Handbook on UN Sanctions and International Law (Larissa van den Herik, ed., 2017).

Reading Recommendations:

– Craig Forcese, Destroying the Caroline: The Frontier Raid that Reshaped the Right to War (2018).

– Ian Urbina, The Outlaw Ocean: Journeys Across the Last Untamed Frontier (2019).

– Erika de Wet, Military Assistance on Request and the Use of Force (2020).

Episode 11 – Catherine O’Rourke on the Rights of Women in Armed Conflict

In this episode, I speak with Catherine O’Rourke, Senior Lecturer in Human Rights and International Law, and Gender Research Coordinator at the Transitional Justice Institute, at Ulster University School of Law, Northern Ireland. We discuss her very recent book, The Rights of Women in Armed Conflict Under International Law, which examines the manner in which four specific regimes — IHL, international criminal law, human rights law, and the UN Security Council — have interacted in relation to the rights of women in armed conflict, not only in theoretical and doctrinal terms, but also in very practical terms on the ground in the armed conflicts in Colombia, Nepal, and the DRC. There are some surprises in terms of which regimes are strongest, and which institutions most effective, in protecting women’s rights. We discuss both the synergies and the conflicts among the different regimes, assessing how the various regimes fall short in protecting women’s rights, and ultimately, whether the multiplicity of regimes and fragmentation of law is, on balance, a benefit or an obstacle to the protection of women’s rights in armed conflict. Another fascinating discussion that will likely leave listeners clamoring for the book!

Materials:

The Rights of Women in Armed Conflict Under International Law (2020).

– “‘Geneva Convention III Commentary’ What Significance for Women’s Rights?” Just Security, Oct. 21, 2020.

Reading Recommendations:

– Gina Heathcote, Feminist Dialogues on International Law (2019).

– Judith Gardam, “Feminist Interventions into International Law: A Generation On,” 40 Adelaide Law Review 219 (2019).

– Judith Gardam and Michelle Jarvis, Women, Armed Conflict and International Law, (2001).

Episode 10 – Eliav Lieblich on the Humanization of Jus ad Bellum

In this episode, I speak with Eliav Lieblich, Professor of Law at The Buchmann Faculty of Law, Tel Aviv University, Israel, about the relatively under-studied relationship between international human rights law and the use of force by states. Eliav, in a forthcoming article, uses a recent General Comment of the U.N. Human Rights Committee as a point of departure for analyzing whether, and to what extent, violations of the jus ad bellum regime might also violate the right to life enshrined in the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. Thus, does an act of aggression by a state infringe human rights law as well as violate the jus ad bellum regime? And do governments contemplating the use of force in self-defense have to consider the human rights obligations owed to its own citizens, and the rights of the people in the state against which it is intending to use force? Eliav explores these fascinating questions, and their important implications, from not only a doctrinal and theoretical perspective, but also through the lens of just war theory and ethics as well.

Materials:

– “The Humanization of Jus ad Bellum: Prospects and Perils,” 32 Eur. J. Int’l L. (forthcoming, 2021).

– “Self-Defense Against Non-State Actors and the Myth of the Innocent State,” in Global Governance and Human Rights (Nehal Bhuta & Rodrigo Vallejo eds., Forthcoming).

Reading Recommendations:

– Helen Frowe, The Ethics of War and Peace (2nd ed., 2016).

– Tom Dannenbaum, The Crime of Aggression, Humanity, and the Soldier (2018).

– Adil Ahmad Haque, Law and Morality and War (2017).

Episode 9 – Oona Hathaway on War Powers and the Scope of National Security

In this episode, I speak with Oona Hathaway, Professor of Law at Yale Law School and Professor of International Law and Area Studies at the Yale University MacMillan Center. We discuss the constitutional and legislative constraints on the executive war-making power, both in terms of the theoretical rationale for such constraints, and in terms of the constitutional and legislative form such constraints take in U.S. legal system. After discussing how and why such constraints in the U.S. have eroded over time, reaching a nadir in the Libyan intervention, Oona explains how the War Powers Resolution could be revised, in ways more consistent with international law, and how Congress could employ the courts, in order to re-establish Congressional authority over decisions to engage in armed conflict. We also discuss how such crises as the Coronavirus pandemic and climate change should cause us to re-think the scope and character of national security priorities and policy. We wrap up with a short discussion of the collaborative process involved in the writing of her co-authored work The Internationalists, and the ethical obligations in being a government lawyer. A fantastic foray into war powers and evolving perspectives on national security!

Materials:

– “How to Revive Congress’s War Powers,” Texas National Security Review (2019).

– “How to Recover a Role for Congress and the Courts in Decisions to Wage War,” Just Security, Jan. 10, 2020)(with Geoffrey Block).

– “COVID-19 Shows How the U.S. Got National Security Wrong,” Just Security, Apr. 7, 2020.

Reading Recommendations:

– Kate Manne, Entitled: How Male Privilege Hurts Women (2020).

– Samuel Moyn, Humane: How Americans Abandoned Peace and Reinvented War, [working title – forthcoming, see this YouTube session for Sam’s discussion of the book!]

– Hilary Mantel, Wolf Hall Trilogy (2009)

Episode 8 – Craig Forcese on the History and Significance of the Caroline Incident

In this episode, Craig Forcese, Professor of Law at the University of Ottawa in Canada, speaks about his book Destroying the Caroline: The Frontier Raid that Reshaped the Right to War. We talk about the history of the famous incident and the diplomatic dispute that gave rise to the famous Caroline test, how and why the incident managed to exercise such an outsize influence over the development of the jus ad bellum regime, and what that says about the nature of international law itself. We also discuss how the incident, with the history itself often mischaracterized, is used and abused in current debates around such issues as anticipatory self-defense, imminence, and the unwilling or unable doctrine. We wrap up with a brief discussion of Canadian national security law, and how it differs from that of the U.S. and other allies. It will likely change your understanding of the Caroline Incident, and should make you want to read the book!

Materials:

Destroying the Caroline: The Frontier Raid that Reshaped the Right to War(2018).

National Security Law: Canadian Practice in International Perspective, 2nd ed. (2020).

Reading Recommendations:

– Tom Ruys, ‘Armed Attack’ and Article 51 of the UN Charter: Evolutions in Customary Law and Practice (2010).

– Tom Ruys et al., The Use of Force in International Law: A Case-Based Approach (2018).

Journal on the Use of Force and International Law .

Episode 7 – Alonso Gurmendi Dunkelberg on Latin American Approaches to the Laws of War

In this episode, I speak with Alonso Gurmendi Dunkelberg, Professor of Law at the Universidad del Pacifico in Lima, Peru. We discuss his recent writing on the Latin American approaches to, and perspectives on, the jus ad bellum regime and principles of non-intervention. Drawing on a rich history of the Latin American response to the Monroe Doctrine and European approaches to intervention in the 19th Century, Alonso explains how the distinct Latin American perspectives developed, found expression in the Montevideo Convention of 1933, and contributed to the Latin American embrace of the U.N. system in 1946. He explains how a misunderstanding of the Latin American perspective leads to common misinterpretations of Latin American positions and responses to recent interventions, such as those in Syria, and debates over doctrinal issues, such as the validity of humanitarian intervention or the unwilling or unable doctrine. We round off our discussion by putting it all into the context of Third World approaches to international law. An eye-opening romp through history and theory!

 

Materials:

– “A Legal History of Consent and Intervention in Civil Wars in Latin America,”  7  J. Use of Force and Int’l L. 1 (2020).

– “The Latin American View of Jus ad Bellum,” Just Security, May 16, 2018.

– “The Other Carolines,” Opinio Juris, Feb. 17, 2020.

Reading Recommendations:

– Juan Pablo Scarfi, The Hidden History of International Law in the Americas: Empire and Legal Networks (2017).

– Liliana Obregón, “Between Civilisation and Barbarism: Creole Interventions in International Law,” 27 Third World Quarterly 815 (2006).

– Andrew Fitzmaurice, “Discovery, Conquest, and Occupation of Territory,” in The Oxford Handbook of the History of International Law, Bardo Fassbender and Anne Peters, eds. (2012).

Episode 6 – Monica Hakimi on the Informal Regulation of Jus ad Bellum

In this episode, I speak with  Monica Hakimi, Professor of Law at the University of Michigan Law School. We discuss a recent article of hers in which she argues that the manner in which the U.N. Security Council tacitly endorses or supports the use of force by states that would otherwise be unlawful, must be understood as forming an “informal regulation” that is part of the jus ad bellum regime. She argues that this is not only true as a descriptive matter, but that as a normative matter we should embrace this as helping to strengthen the jus ad bellum regime. We debate some of these normative implications, and the extent to which such an informal regulation is consistent with different conceptions of the rule of law – which leads us into another recent chapter of hers on the value of state-level argument about the jus ad bellum. a fascinating discussion all round!

Materials:

– “The Jus ad Bellum‘s Regulatory Form,” 112 American J. Int’l L. 151 (2018).

Symposium on Monica Hakimi, “The Jus ad Bellum‘s Regulatory Form,” 112 AJIL Unbound (2018).

Reading Recommendations:

– Tom Ruys et al., The Use of Force in International Law: A Case-Based Approach (2018).

– Michael Reisman, The Quest for World Order and Human Dignity in the Twenty-First Century (2013).

– Don Herzog, Sovereignty, RIP (2020).

Episode 5 – Eric Talbot Jensen on Human Judgment and Autonomous Weapons

In Episode 5, I speak with Eric Talbot Jensen, Professor of Law at BYU Law School. Eric discusses his recent law review article, in which he argues that the law of armed conflict does not require human judgment to be involved in targeting decisions, and that therefore autonomous weapons are not per se unlawful. What is more, he goes further to argue that because autonomous weapons are not unlawful, and may in fact comply with the rules of IHL better than humans, there should be no limitation on the research and development of such weapons. We discuss some of the strong ethical counter-arguments to his position.

Materials:

“The (Erroneous) Requirement for Human Judgment (and Error) in the Law of Armed Conflict,” 96 Int’l L. Stud. 26 (2020).

Reading Recommendations:

– Paul Scharre, Army of None: Autonomous Weapons and the Future of War (2018).

– United States Department of Defense, “Directive No. 3000.09, Autonomy Weapons Systems,” Nov. 1, 2012 (as revised).

– Chris Jenks and Rain Liivoja, “Machine Autonomy and the Constant Care Obligation,” ICRC Humanitarian Law & Policy, Dec. 11, 2018.

Episode 4 – Ashley Deeks on AI and the Laws of War

In this episode, I speak with Ashley Deeks, Professor of Law and Director of the National Security Law Center. Ashley begins by explaining how AI and machine learning may implicate the jus ad bellum regime – being used to assist governments in decision-making around the use of force and the exercise of the right of self-defense. We also discuss briefly the risks associated with the development of artificial general intelligence, and whether international law should play a role in addressing that risk. Conversation then turns to how AI will implicate the law of armed conflict, in terms of both assisting commanders in the field with ensuring their conduct is in compliance with IHL, and also thinking about how IHL might be implemented by coding the rules and principles of IHL into weapons systems. Lots of food for thought!

Materials:

– “Machine Learning, Artificial Intelligence, and the Use of Force by States,” 10 J. Nat. Sec. L. & Pol. (2019) (with Noam Lubell and Daragh Murray).

– “Predicting Enemies,” 104 VA. L. Rev. (2018).

– “Coding the Law of Armed Conflict: First Steps,” in Matthew C. Waxman ed., The Law of Armed Conflict in 2040 (forthcoming, 2020).

(Some of the material discussed is still in draft form and not yet on-line – watch for them in the upcoming Lieber Blog; and see her SSRN page for more writing on AI.)

Reading Recommendations:

– “How Will Artificial Intelligence Affect International Law?” 114 AJIL Unbound 138 (2020).

– Lisa Shay et al.,Do Robots Dream of Electric Laws? An Experiment in the Law as Algorithm,” in Ryan Calo et al, eds. Robot Law (2016).

– John Allen and Darrell West, Turning Point: Policymaking in the Era of Artificial Intelligence (2020).

Episode 3 – Adil Haque on the Use of Force, Aggression, and Self-Defense

In this episode, I speak with Adil Haque, Professor of Law and Judge Jon O. Newman Scholar at Rutgers Law School. Our discussion focuses primarily on two recent blog posts on Just Security, in which Adil explores the relationship between the use of force, aggression and self-defense. Based on extensive research into the travaux preparatoire for the U.N. Charter, Adil suggests that self-defense is not exactly an exception to the prohibition on the use of force in Art. 2(4) of the Charter, but rather is an exception that only the U.N. Security Council may authorize the use of force to deal with aggression. What is more, self-defense is then understood as being in response to aggression, and that an “armed attack” as used in Art. 51 of the Charter must be understood in these terms. As Adil explains, this both reinforces some of the standard views on self-defense, but also alters and challenges some of those views. It is a conversation that will likely have you questioning your understanding of the relationship! We also briefly discuss his book, Law and Morality at War, at least enough to make you want to read it.

Materials:

“The United Nations Charter at 75: Between Force and Self-Defense – Part One,” Just Security, Jun. 24, 2020.

The United Nations Charter at 75: Between Force and Self-Defense – Part Two,” Just Security, Jun. 24, 2020.

“‘Clearly of Latin American Origin’: Armed Attack by Non-State Actors and the UN Charter,” Just Security, Nov. 5, 2019.

Reading Recommendations:

– Craig Forcese, Destroying the Caroline: The Frontier Raid that Reshaped the Right to War (2018).

– Tadashi Mori, Origins of the Right of Self-Defence in International Law: From the Caroline Incident to the United Nations Charter (2018).

– Janina Dill, “Toward a Moral Division of Labour Between IHL and IHRL during the Conduct of Hostilities,” in Z. Bohrer, J. Dill, & H. Duffy eds, Law Applicable to Armed Conflict (2020).