Weekend Roundup: April 21-27, 2012

Weekend Roundup: April 21-27, 2012

Kevin Jon Heller kicked us off this week with posts about the ICC’s report regarding Gaddafi’s situation in Libya and the infighting at the ICC between the Prosecutor and Libyan authorities. He also added a post about the OPCD report outlining Saif Gaddafi’s attitude about the ICC.

Peter Spiro previewed the Arizona SB-1070 immigration case before the Supreme Court, discussing why the court should have ducked and also expanded upon his NY Times op-ed before giving a recap of Wednesday’s oral arguments. Julian Ku also pondered the end of federal foreign affairs exclusivity with respect to this case.

Julian additionally analyzed the ATS in the Supreme Court’s decision in Mohamed v. Palestinian Authority and discussed how the decision may affect re-argumentation in the Kiobel case. He added a post showcasing a roundtable in DC with John Yoo, promoting their new book, Taming Globalization, and pointed out that despite China’s growth, infrastructural problems remain.

Deborah Pearlstein commented on Charlie Savage’s NY Times article about executive power, and after a thought-provoking comment by Savage himself, clarified her position.

Leading up to Thursday’s verdict in the Charles Taylor case, Kevin Jon Heller reminded us that Taylor is not the first former head-of-state to be judged by an international tribunal and following the verdict, Kevin posted in response to the verdict and about the one “dissenting” voice of alternative Judge Sow.

This week’s main event was the Symposium on the Functional Approach to the Law of Occupation. During the symposium:

  • Aeyal Gross explored what the “functional approach” to occupational law actually is.
  • Sari Bashi reluctantly defended the law of occupation here, explaining why Israel is responsible as an occupying power in Gaza and why it matters.
  • Valentina Azarov discussed the intricate challenge of termination of belligerent occupation and highlighted how the legal framework falls short of answering more practical questions about transition of sovereignty.
  • Matthew Saul analyzed the role of the right to self-determination on the functional approach to occupational law.
  • Pnina Sharvit-Baruch posed the questions whether the Gaza Strip is still occupied by Israel, helping to answer the larger question of whether Israel is under a duty to provide for the well being of the occupants in the Gaza Strip.
  • Elizabeth Samson also discussed effective control and whether Israel’s actions falling short of occupation were relevant to maintaining security and therefore somehow justifiable.

Turning now to the responses,

  • Gross commented about Azarov’s binary approach and wondered if that approach actually created what could be called a “double bind.” 
  • Bashi responded to Azarov’s and Sharvit-Baruch’s posts reflecting that both approaches seem to undermine accountability in some respects.
  • Saul gave a general response with his thoughts on multiple postings, especially with respect to the scope of the functional approach.
  • Sharvit-Baruch commented about the status of the Gaza Strip and underlined that the inherent complexity of such a situation must be taken into account.
  • Azarov finished the symposium by questioning the very term “functional.”

Thank you to all of our guest contributors for a fantastic symposium. Have a great weekend, everyone!  


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