Recent Posts

Peggy’s post and Julian’s comment to her post set out some good arguments as to why John Bolton is or is not the right person to send to the UN. (Democracy Arsenal, by the way, has the top ten reasons why John Bolton should not be confirmed. Also note this post.) Regardless, I think there is little doubt that...

Foreign Policy's cover story on the "Committee that Runs the World," i.e., the Bush national security team, is well worth a read. (Try playing the "two degrees of Henry Kissinger" game at home!) Over at Democracy Arsenal, Derek Chollet has this positive assessment of the second-term "dream team" Condoleezza Rice is assembling at State. Over at Slate, Fred Kaplan has...

William Taft gave excellent legal advice to the Secretary of State and to the President. The Supreme Court, our international allies, U.S. public opinion, and the President have each vindicated him. The advice of the DOJ’s Office of Legal Counsel, by contrast, proved to be short-sighted or worse. If you haven’t already done so, please read Taft’s memo on the...

The WSJ reports today (reg. req'd) on a speech from last month by former State Department Legal Adviser William H. Taft IV criticizing the U.S. government's policy on detentions in Guantanamo Bay. Here are the highlights:There is no basis in the law of war, criminal law or human-rights law for such practices [in Guantanamo]. Nor is it tenable...

The day before last week's ASIL meeting, AEI hosted an excellent panel discussion of the book "The Limits of International Law" by Professors Eric Posner and Jack Goldsmith. A transcript of the discussion is here. The Posner/Goldsmith thesis is based on rational choice: States should engage in international law making or agree to comply with pre-existing international legal norms...

Sudan's government is (not surprisingly) refusing to hand over alleged war criminals to the ICC, as it is required to do per the U.N. Security Council's resolution last week. Indeed, according to the BBC, tens of thousands of Sudanese are protesting the U.N. referral and even directly blaming the U.S. "We are coming here to say to America 'no' to...

Following is an excerpt from the State Department press briefing from April 1st in which Richard Boucher discussed Security Council Resolution 1593 (transcribed, along with state comments, here), referring the Darfur situation to the ICC (see also the press release from the ICC itself, with links to other resources, here). Some of the questions focus on whether the Security Council...

The text of the resolution, as well as a summary statements of Security Council members on the resolution, is here.The resolution passed 11-0-4. The four abstentions were Algeria, Brazil, China, and the U.S. The technique of not necesarily supporting something but not preventing it either by abstaining has been a technique that has become more common in the Post-Cold War...

Suzanne Nossel at DemocracyArsenal has posted a news report stating that the US has agreed to let the ICC handle the trials of the crimes in Darfur. An ICC referral is a topic that we here at Opinio Juris have debated at length. See here, here, and here for only three examples (other links our within these previous...