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International Law K

Although we made a 1NC, this is not a complete stand-alone Kritik. Rather it includes a
variety of reasons why international law generally, and the Law of the Sea Treaty
specifically, are bad. It would be more strategic to use these cards to supplement any
of the following Kritiks:
-Western Epistemology K
-Frontier K
-Ocean Borders K

a. International law was founded by, and continues to maintain, colonialism –
Treaties don’t check state power, they secure it in by universalizing law and
sovereign relationships.
Gardner 10 *David, Graduate student at San Diego State University, “The Colonial Nature of
International Law”, E-International Relations Students, 6/8/2014,, 7/28/2014] B.S
“International law was principally a consequence of imperial expansion.”*1+ In this paper I will argue that
international law is colonial. In order to argue this effectively I will start by defining international law and colonialism. After which, I
will show how international law is a colonial relic, having been developed at a time of colonialism, with roots in the Greek and Roman Empires. I will
then argue that international

law is not based on an ‘inherent natural law’, and thus that it is merely a
tool for the imposition of western political ideas upon the world as a whole. Finally, I will argue that
international law is colonial in the sense that by ceding sovereignty to be governed by law,
sovereigns are being colonised by the western, primarily, European legal system. For the purpose of
this paper I define ‘international law’, as the law of states, made for states. It is the law, which governs sovereign powers. “In considering the nature
and development of international law … states are the primary subjects of international law.”*2+ Equally, “ colonialism

is a practice of
domination, which involves the subjugation of one people to another.”*3+ Colonialism is the
creation and building of colonies in a territory by the people of another territory. It is the process where,
the sovereignty over the colony is claimed by the coloniser. Colonialism brings with it the removal of a subject’s sovereignty. Colonialism
implies inequality and subjugation, while international law should be equal and universal. In being
universally applicable to all, international law could not be considered simply as a method of imposing one’s values on weaker states. Bederman
suggests that, “while the modern international system can be traced back some 400 years, certain of the basic concepts of international law can be
discerned in political relationships thousands of years ago.”*4+ Nicolson argues that even the earliest developing man may have dealt with one another
on such matters as hunting grounds and ending battles.[5] If this were the case, one of the first laws governing such relationships, and consequently
one of the first examples of inter-territorial law may have been the inviolability of a messenger or negotiator; potentially an early example of diplomatic
immunity. However, such examples from ancient civilisations are geographically and culturally restricted, and one can not logically argue, without being
overly reductionist, that such examples are the origins of modern international law. There has been much discourse surrounding this question from a
merely historical point of view.

Historians may argue that law was developed at a time of colonialism dating
back to the Chinese, Greek and Roman Empires. “The Romans had a profound respect for organisation and the law.”*6+
The early Roman, jus civile, applied solely to Roman citizens. However, such laws were unable to
provide a legal framework for expanding sovereigns. Jus gentium, was later developed for this
purpose; it was designed to govern relations between foreigners and Roman citizens. Shaw explains
that “the instrument through which this particular system evolved was the officially known as the Praetor Peregrinus, whose function it was to oversee
all legal relationships, including bureaucratic and commercial matters, within the empire”*7+. However, it must be remembered that there was no
acceptance of other nations on a basis of equality or universality, and thus jus gentium remained solely a domestic law for colonies under control of the
Roman Empire. Such empires did develop import axioms and theories of law, which have since become integral to international law but they did not
establish an international law, due to the fact that they acted with disregard to external rules in their dealings with those territories that were not
already part of their respective empires. One

of the most influential of Greek concepts taken up by the Romans
was the idea of natural law[8]: the argument that there is a body of rules of universal relevance.
Grotius, like many others believed that laws were constructed by men, but ultimately they reflected essential natural law. Grotius maintained that
natural law came from an essential universal reason, common to all man. He argued that law was not imposed from above, but rather derived from
principles. Due

to his argument that the ideas and precepts of the ‘law of nature’ were rooted in
human intelligence, he maintained that such rules could not be restricted to any nation or any
group but were of worldwide relevance. Advocates of international law argue that
international law is based on natural law and is, therefore, universally applicable to all. In
principle, there is a strong case to be made for a law that is inherent in all man. Basing
international law on natural law is mistaking an a posteriori argument for an a priori truth, and
would perpetuate the spread of and dominance of western academic thought through what is
essentially a socially constructed belief and not an a priori given. The classic problem associated
with natural law is, who decides what natural law is? Using a putative theory as a basis for law,
means that natural law will always be interpreted through one’s self-interest. It is intrinsically

compared to a powerful emerging super-power. Concrete rules of international law are derived from what states actually do. Morgenthau argues that “the great majority of the rules of international law are generally observed …. did not impose sanctions on China. nor is it universal and despite being constructed on western values. consequently “international law perpetuates current power structures”*12+. male supremacy. As a result. in that one has the choice to subscribe to it. and for this reason. However. If we accept colonialism as “a practice of domination. An interesting example is the comparison between the differing enforcement policies adopted by the international community against China and Uzbekistan. the only obligation on states is to act in their own self-interest. which involves the subjugation of one people to another”. then international law is arguably colonising the states. rather than what the ‘law of nature’ suggests they ought to do. economic sanctions or trade embargoes outweigh the benefits of such a move. and other pathologies of human history”*11+. Recently. They maintain that if international law is not law. however. The threat of becoming outcast in the global system is one that means “the strong do what they can and the weak suffer what they must”*18+. the power element is obvious in international law. are often criticised as being based too heavily on the West’s importance of liberalism and individualism. It could be argued that western powers and international organisations. primarily in the west. such enforcement methods allow the perpetuation of power to manifest itself in selective enforcement and shows that the cost of contravening international law to the most powerful is too small to force compliance as it they themselves who created such laws. the subjugation of people and suppression of distinct cultures in a similar way that colonialism did at a time of imperialistic expansion. and socially constructed western values. As I have shown. Within O’Connell’s view is the argument that international law has allowed. may only be enforced upon certain states and that “international law is used by the already powerful to protect that power”*16+. Then law is merely an aspect of politics. are being colonised by international law. it seems that states are ceding their sovereignty and thus. is not based on a given natural law. which brings with it the removal of a subject’s sovereignty. such as war. For states to commit to one single declaration of international law would “require sacrificing diverse cultures and their unique way of viewing the world”*10+. Equally. no trade sanctions. who are not powerful enough to contest international law. Such values are being imposed on weaker states. it has. although allegedly universally applicable to all. and is subject to the manipulation and interpretation of powerful states.subjective to interpret natural law and this led O’Connell to argue that natural law “will be constantly found to be aimed at a particular state or group of states. developed domestic law and treatise. it would mean commitment to a law that “has supported imperialism. who consent to international law. Such empires. I would argue. imposing sanctions on ‘criminal countries’ may be to the detriment of the ‘policing’ body. as well as their emotive treatment of Tibet: yet. Such a realist argument suggests that if states are economically rational they will only comply with international law if the cost. Post-modern critiques of international law hold a lot in common with classical realist arguments. in the international system. (because) it is in the interests of the state to oblige. racism. In this case. It is not international morality. heavy economic.”*9+ The Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. if for no other. Accepting such rights as intrinsic norms. as morality is a societal construct. International law is not objective. and from some perspectives. Commitment to a single declaration of international law would mean the loss of culture. Ultimately. where after a “bloody crackdown”*14+ in 2007. This is unlike in Uzbekistan. rather than western social constructions is to risk undermining alternatives. and at times required. which can be manipulated to one’s self-interest and politics. international law is not universal. there has been much media attention about numerous counts of Human Rights abuses in China. due to the large amount of exports from and the economic importance of China. and what precedents they set. I have argued that international law is colonial. Bodin argued in De Republica that to be sovereign a prince must be “freed from laws”*17+. while a weaker state such as Uzbekistan is forced to abide by international law due to it’s less powerful position in the international system. diplomatic and arms sanctions were imposed on the central Asian state with a low GDP[15]. punishments or international court appearances have resulted. . which formed the basis for an adoption of international law. yet in consenting to international law. militarism.”*13+ Where national self-interest demands action contrary to international law. we see that international law. become widely adopted by ‘sovereign’ states. the origins of international law are rooted in colonial empires.

or as a container for unlimited resources. Maps reinforced a view of the ocean which took into account only the “flat” surfaces – the top of the ocean and the seabed. Our governance of High Seas is a reflection of that construction of the deep oceans areas as only important as a “highway” to held open or a future source of resources on or below the seabed. “Ocean Governance: High Seas and the Shift in Construction of Ocean Space as Social Space”. yet maps continue maintain the homogenous view of ocean spaces which reinforce state power relations within the constructed view of ocean space (Pramono & Garmendia 2004). regulations and representations of that space. The introduction of new cartographic techniques makes it possible to create complex representations. The signing of UNCLOS spatially and temporally fixed our conception of ocean space as simply a transport medium for the free movement of goods. The water column – that which makes up the entire volume of water that is the ocean – was invisible. rather than the attributes of that space itself. Feb 12 2010. by Natsu Taylor Saito.allacademic. a surface for the projection of power through navies. inequality. questions whether this has brought about a shift in the social construction of ocean space the mediated through Google Ocean on the internet. environmental destruction.” http://www. The release of Google Ocean may provide the conditions of possibility for alternative narratives that include the actions of civil society in a social space through videos. chemical and biological complexity of ocean space was undermined and ignored. non-space and therefore not social space to be governed. or as a future source of resources on or below the seabed. Genevra 10 (Garmendia Genevra. This paper problematizes the dominant construction of ocean space. c. a non-space and therefore not social space to be governed. and whether such a shift may affect governance of the High Seas. Such construction is maintained through the dialectic of society’s uses. homogenizing it to materialize territorial control and secure resource extraction. Department of Political Science. and racism. argues that such representations limit our ability to materialize appropriate governance structures. Vote negative – Continued reliance on international law will only result in war. Theories on the construction of social space are concerned with the fixity and flows of both space and time. html?phpsessid=m3m08arhga3gupqouuddmi3mg5)mc Governance of spaces such as the High Seas is based on social constructions of that space. or as a container for unlimited resources. Schmidt ’10 (Patrick. The signing of the UN Convention Law on the Sea spatially and temporally fixed our conception of ocean space as simply a transport medium for the free movement of goods and navies. The physical. Macalester College. Our governance of High Seas was a reflection of the construction of the deep oceans as only important as a “highway” to remain open. our alternative is to suspend our faith in the neutrality of international law and to speak the narrative of colonialism. A particular conceptualization of place as social space may be fixed by the hegemonic discourse or informed by alternative cultural or technological representations. Cartography has mediated our conceptualization of space and serves as a powerful tool of state rationalizing space to materialize territorial control and secure resource extraction. Instead.lawcourts. narratives and three-D tours. “MEETING THE ENEMY: AMERICAN EXCEPTIONALISM AND INTERNATIONAL LAW. 7/28/14.b. the way modern maps represent and erase the complexities of ocean space. The Law of the Sea is an integral part of this colonial project. Seldan 1617) have led to modern international law such as the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS). Cartography mediates our conception of space and serves as a powerful tool of state rationalization of space.htm) . The water column was Western juridical ideas (Grotius 1608. Maps reinforced the view of the ocean which took into account only surfaces – the surface of the ocean and the seabed. The aff represents ocean space only a site for resource extraction and territorial control.

cementing the terms of international law today. cherry picking the most damning quotations to represent the views of Presidents from George Washington to Theodore Roosevelt and many other figures along the way (such as Frank Baum. This book. as is the belief that the urbane. Saito’s unforgiving approach to these chapters emphasizes the unvarnished racism. ends trumping means if necessary. greed. that challenges both the contemporary framework of international law and the precepts of American exceptionalism. How deeply can it fails so consistently as to appear fundamentally one feel an attachment to international law when flawed? Realists and cynics resolve the tension here by abandoning any idealism about the international legal order (if not law in general). Saito puts the problem starkly at the conclusion of chapter 8:“If…one sees extant problems of global instability – ongoing wars. taking in their stride the failure of legal rhetoric to induce compliant behaviors. in which Western values would be imposed on the Other while the United States asserted the right to act unilaterally in the interests of civilization. which is the subject of Chapters 7 and 8.111+). Co-incident with these ideological commitments is the belief that the democracy. perhaps even as caused by the policies and practices of ‘civilized’ states. Doesn’t every nation. the central plot of which The contemporary failure of the United States to prosecute the war according to international law demonstrates the deeply held belief that America is exceptional. for however rapidly the European powers shed their colonial holdings. because those structures are inherently flawed. these chapters as well. In so doing she puts herself at odds with the latter camp: to Saito. In MEETING THE ENEMY. not just . 228)That is.I do not have to go out on a limb to assume that the substantial majority of those in academia were pleased to see the end of the George W. doing much to return equanimity and mutual respect to America’s international engagements. From the Introduction and the first chapter the reader might detect and share an investment in international law. a different story will have to be told. Her approach throughout is to draw extensively on secondary materials. revealing the ways that the entire intellectual foundations of American and Western thinking have brought the world to the perilous condition it is in today. ecological disintegration. recent wars carry on a frame of seeing the civilized world struggling against an uncivilized enemy. and. the arc remains one of colonialism. Thus. the recent behavior of the United States is a single scene in a longer play. From the development of European colonialism. Puerto Rico. The bulk of the book – Chapters 2 through 8 – substantiates the role of this understanding of exceptionalism in the The central conceptual narrative in this history is not international law qua international law but colonialism. and human rights are rational and universal values. Saito leaves no heroes in her wake. There are natural tensions in the argument Saito advances. author of the “much beloved” Wizard of Oz *p.” (p. takes on the challenging task of detailing her objections to contemporary international law. and lived by. civilized peoples must assimilate the Other [*510] to these norms through education and economic can be sketched quite simply. with the attendant hope that the United States would put short term interests aside and stand by principles. weaving together episodes and legal cases with illustrative primary material. and a significant percentage of those likely looked for President Obama to usher in a policy seachange. Cuba. she asks the reader to confront the centuries-old colonialism behind international law as we know it. The primary preoccupation of this book is to chronicle and critique the origins and development of international law. liberty. The histories likely least familiar to readers (such as the Philippines) form the bridge between Saito’s vision of America and the rise of the 20th century global legal order. Chapter 7’s more tightly focused progression from the Hague Peace Conferences to the United Nations at mid-century contrasts with the looser tour of international economic and legal instruments in Chapter 8. it will never be enough for the United States to live up to its international obligations or to engage existing international institutions. even though the Introduction and first chapter invoke the post2001 politics of the War of Terror. before Chapter 6 extends the account of the American Empire to Hawai’i. but the life of this book is her effort to put short-term changes of tone into historical relief. the precepts of that system became part of the American approach to international law. the nation has an obligation to make safe the path and lead the world toward civilization. At the same time. and brutality of America’s 19th century pursuit of empire. and the Philippines. which retell how the belief in the Manifest Destiny of Americas enabled white Americans to build an empire without concern (and sometimes with overt malevolence) for indigenous peoples. the long journey of American Indians drives Chapters 3 through 5. Slavery and Mexico make appearances in American project. development. part of the “Critical America” series edited by Richard Delgado and Jean Stefancic for NYU Press. Yet. Bush administration. the need to justify conquest resulted in the rehearsal of tropes about civilization and savages. Natsu Taylor Saito leaves no doubt about her place in the former camp. and the growing disparities in income or social well-being – as incapable of being resolved by the current international regime.

“don’t do as I do. **511+ Saito’s America is explicitly treated as a case study of colonialism and the law. colonializing ambitions.the United States.238).241). into one unified account about the dominance of racist. chapter-by-chapter. jargon-laced calls to “unleash the liberatory potential of alternative systems of world order” (p. drawing on episodes and discussions that implicate everything from political philosophy to development economics. thus giving “room for all voices and a multiplicity of perspectives” (p.245) by suspending “the notion of universality and its concomitant division of humanity into the ‘civilized’ and the Other. Yet. do as I say”? A more critical generalization about law might be inspired by the ease with which Saito switches between making “America” and “Western civilization” the target. and moving from the case study she could have gone further to consider how power and law connect at a higher level of generality. don’t judge this book by the final chapter but rather by the diagnosis of the problem. All that seems available are general. In total the book makes it difficult if not impossible to ignore the historic continuities between international politics today and the overt racism of a century ago. Some abstraction is on display in Chapter 9’s concluding discussion of prescriptions. . That narrative folds into the wider argument about Western legal traditions. desire to live by the slogan. What can anyone do to provoke wholesale change in a centuries-old conceptual frame? Perhaps not much.” (p. barring more imagination or optimism than most readers will muster. However much a reader might find themselves persuaded that an assumption of the superiority of Western civilization is laced through contemporary international law. Otherizing. the final chapter offers a bucket of cold water. Students of both American history and law should find thought-provoking the extent to which the traditional zones of “domestic” and “foreign” policy blend.


UNCLOS served to confirm territorialization of 12 nautical miles adjacent to shore only while homogenizing the 200 mile coastal EEZ to maintain freedom of navigation.allacademic. Governance structures set up through the Law of the Sea maintain the traditional western landized control of ocean space – governance flows only through land in the form of the flag state control of any vessel or artificial island (Garmendia 2006). the introduction of the 200 nautical mile Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) limited state control only to “things. Unlike land where territorialization gave state control of access to an area. . A few Latin American. “Ocean Governance: High Seas and the Shift in Construction of Ocean Space as Social Space”. UNCLOS preserved this contested nature of this space by giving coastal states sovereign rights to the living resources only (UNCLOS 1982) while freedom of navigation was preserved. people and things. 7/28/ Asian and African countries to began to declare 200 mile fishing zone as territorial space (Churchill & Lowe 1983). http://citation.2NC Link Law of the Sea enforce western ideals allowing them to own the ocean Genevra 10 (Garmendia Genevra. The DWFN were also the hegemonic powers of the Cold War and needed to prevent any restriction of their ability to project power freely across ocean space. The lack of any use value (or property rights) of the water column itself have erased any possibilities currently for a new locus of governance within the ocean itself. space is “fundamental to the exercise of power” (1984) and control.” During the mid twentieth century developing nations saw drastic declines to their fishery resources to Deep Water Fishing Nations (DWFN) and decided they needed to assert control. html?phpsessid=m3m08arhga3gupqouuddmi3mg5)mc As Foucault states. The mid twentieth century saw the territorialization of ocean space with the codification of the UN Law of the Sea. Feb 12 2010. States create territory under historical and diverse social forces (Brenner & Elden 2009) and the historical traditions and social constructions passed down from Grotius and Seldan played out in a distinct dialectic between the concepts of freedom of navigation and the need for the control of resources.

Chimni 11 (B. The optimistic international lawyers of the 1960s.Professor Anghie received a B.S Chimni is a Professor of International Law at the Jawaharlal Nehru University and a scholar in law. just. and International Law in the Twenty-First Century.[266] The question that remained was the possibility and effectiveness of reversing the consequences of colonialism. in the final analysis. Since its articulation. it has been and continues to be a problem that has preoccupied both mainstream and critical theorizing about the discipline. Rather. and equal international system. It then met the charge of being a neo-colonial international law by evolving. In the 1960s. relegated to the geographical periphery. while pointing to the obvious inequities of the doctrines of state responsibility. from Monash University in Melbourne. Date Accessed: 7/28/14. who were the most trenchant critics of the Eurocentric character of international law. It is true that international law is now more open and cosmopolitan. Finding the Peripheries: Sovereignty and Colonialism in Nineteenth-Century International Law. that is of the endless renewal of “the spirit of international law.A.J. “Capitalism. Australia.D. colonial international law was able to reinvent itself as a democratic and universal international law through various initiatives that supported decolonization.” Revised version of keynote address from October 20-22 I am arguing that an exclusive focus on this framework cannot provide an understanding of the history of the relationship between international law and the non-European world. http://law.pdf. 66-69] B. The problem of how to establish order in the absence of an overarching sovereign is a problem that arises with the articulation of the positivist framework. a number of eminent international lawyers voiced concern about the dilution effect of these new states on an international law that was. 7/28/2014. 40 19999 / Sovereignty and Colonialism in International Law. The non-European world. The rapid development of international human rights law in particular lends credence to international law’s pursuit of the global common good. Harvard International Law Journal / Vol. European. this movement towards the decolonization of international law was by no means universally acclaimed. Still. In the era of global imperialism entirely new branches of international law have emerged that promise to address the urgent problems of the day and promote the welfare of global peoples renewing the spirit of international law. when it was clear that the emergence of developing nations would change radically the character of the international system. In making this point I am not in any way seeking to diminish the extraordinary or defining importance of this body of work. moreover. For instance.” Each era has seen the production of new laws and institutions that promise liberation and emancipation from the ills that characterize the world order of the day. from Harvard Law School. Winter 1999.[267] Thus Guha-Roy. international law has promoted the process of decolonization by formulating doctrines of selfdetermination where once it formulated doctrines of annexation and terra nullius.S My argument has been that the modern discipline operates very much within the framework it has inherited from the nineteenth century. Pgs. even those notable scholars from developing nations.[265] Nor does it appear sufficient to me to claim that the racism of the nineteenth century has been transcended by the achievement of sovereign statehood by the non-European world. The specific historical experience of European states is generalized and universalized by its metamorphosis into the defining theoretical preoccupation of the discipline. and an LL.A2: Perm The perm leaves the “spirit of international law” intact – causes There is a parallel story of international law. were hopeful that the acquisition of sovereignty by developing nations and participation in international legal forums would result in the creation of a truly universal. an international development law. among other things. argued that developing . Modern international law is still inherently colonial and unredeemable— the perm’s concealment ensures survival of the current system Anghie 99 [Antony . http://teachers.B. is also relegated to the margins of theory.colonelby. Imperialism. He earned an S.

For example. The same reflex may be seen at the doctrinal level. but on repudiating those rules that facilitated colonialism.[271] International law remains emphatically European in this respect. the nineteenth century could be said to embody a particular set of attitudes and methods: it posits an essentialist dichotomy between the non-European and the European. to establish the framework within which indigenous peoples struggle to assert their rights. In the animal kingdom we hold to the view that the most highly developed species we have proceeded from the lowest. On a material level. for example. as discussed earlier.”*276+ There is a danger that . the systems of economic and political inequality created by colonialism under the auspices of nineteenth. in the Western Sahara Case. it is inverted by way of a reconstructed jurisprudence in which “society” has been successfully constituted as a function of law. it asserts that the only history that may be written of the backward is in terms of its progress towards the advanced. Many of these elements are evident in the work of prominent international relations scholars. For instance. But an examination of the recent jurisprudence of the Court suggests that little effort has been made to draw upon the legal traditions and systems of nonWestern peoples in the administration of international justice. Any tendency to treat the nineteenth century as being only of historical interest must be treated cautiously. the doctrine itself is rarely dismissed as outmoded because of the racist ways in which it has been almost invariably deployed. there appears to be an inherent reflex within international law to conceal the colonial past on which its entire structure is based. and yet we find all the simple forms still in existence today. and a ritual enacted whenever it attempts to renew and revive itself. in failure. who asserted in Civilization and Its Discontents: But have we a right to assume the survival of something that was originally there. The legacies of the nineteenth century appear in even more fundamental ways: despite recognizing that the treaties were unequal and often extracted by force.” Once that construction has served its purpose.[274] Positivism and the nineteenth century are an integral part of the contemporary discipline.” had been so explicitly and clearly formulated in ways that embodied distinctions and discriminations that furthered colonialism could be readily reformed by the simple expedient of excising or reformulating the offending terminology. The alternative position is that the nineteenth century remains an integral part of contemporary international law.[273] Thus. As I have attempted to argue. alongside of what was later derived from it? Undoubtedly. “sovereignty” and “law. on the whole.[272] Similarly. While the operation of the doctrine is thus denied. The doctrine of terra nullius is now understood to have been used over the centuries to dispossess and destroy indigenous peoples throughout the non-European world. from Samuel Huntington’s influential argument regarding “The Clash of Civilizations. the International Court of Justice asserted that the Western Sahara could not have been terra nullius because the people who lived there did in fact have a form of political organization. it establishes a hierarchy between these entities. Simplifying considerably. [268] It is clear that scholars from developing nations never achieved the significant reforms that they desired. the International Court of Justice may theoretically draw upon “the general principles of law recognized by civilized nations. it assumes and promotes the centrality of the civilized and legitimizes the conquest and dispossession of the backward. the doctrines consolidated by nineteenth-century jurists continue. just. whether in the mental field or elsewhere. and authoritative while the other is backward and barbaric. the argument is made that more recent anthropological evidence suggests the Aboriginal peoples of Australia had a form of “political organization.century international law continue to operate despite the ostensible change of legal regime.” where “civilized” must now be understood to mean all nations. The process of distancing and suppressing the past is a common feature of the discipline. There is nothing strange in such a phenomenon.” as a consequence of which the terra nullius doctrine could not be said to apply to Australia. not on repudiating the whole of international law.[269] It is doubtful whether a discipline whose fundamental concepts. these treaties continue to be legally binding. Jurists and courts attempting to reverse the effects of these laws are often compelled to do so within these established frameworks.[270] Thus. it silences the backward and denies it any subjectivity or autonomy. in important ways. positivists vehemently set out to detach themselves from their naturalist past. The nineteenth century exists within the discipline in a way suggested by Freud. the drive by developing countries to create a “New International Economic Order” ended. in the way that the construction of “law” depends on a notion of “society. regardless of its supposed receptivity to other legal thinking.”*275+ to Francis Fukuyama’s assertions as to “The End of History.nations were intent. The civilized/non-civilized distinction featured in the doctrines and treaties of the nineteenth century was generally expunged from the vocabulary of international law. suggesting that one is advanced. it characterizes relations between these entities to be inherently antagonistic. On a larger scale. Nevertheless. and it contemplates no other approaches to solve the problems of society than those that the civilized have formulated. these doctrines are not so much confronted as evaded through reinterpretation of the relevant facts. The question is not so much whether the nineteenth century has been transcended but how its continuing effects within the contemporary legal system may be obscured.

it appears to be an enduring and unfortunate truth that non-European states that have been the victims of colonialism often have no inhibition from themselves becoming colonial oppressors. Many of the Asian and African societies colonized in the nineteenth century had previously been involved in imperial projects themselves. Further. . which relies on the distinction between liberal and non-liberal states.the suggestive work being done on the liberal peace. it must be noted that nineteenth-century attitudes are by no means peculiar to relations between European and non-European peoples. could embody and reproduce some of the elements and attitudes of the nineteenth century.[277] Equally important.

It is a body of law that applies to all states regardless of their specific cultures. Postcolonial Theory and International Relations: A Critical Introduction (Routledge. many of the authors of the English School are well aware of. belief systems. or mechanism. “The European empires can…be seen as the nursery.pdf.”*ii+ Thus while IR is admittedly Eurocentric in its understanding of the world. even when they see anarchy as the defining feature of the international order. in their account. which has the considerable merit of enquiring into the historical origins of the contemporary international system. write Buzan and Little. International law locks in the sovereign world order and is used to suppress non-European states (all under the guise of universality). Harvard International Law Journal / Vol. argue that the Eurocentrism of IR mars its understanding of past international systems. 40 19999 / Sovereignty and Colonialism in International Law. Pgs. http://teachers. the account of the ‘expansion of international society’ offered by the English School in influential texts such as Adam Watson’s The Evolution of International Society and Buzan and Little’s International Systems in World History is Eurocentric and mistaken. It is a common set of doctrines that all states use to regulate relations with each other. of the spread of capitalism (or modernity). The association between international law and universality is so ingrained that pointing to this connection appears tautological. Asia. University of London. Australia. those in the discipline who.D. are nonetheless interested in how this historically evolved.“The present international political structure of the world… is. Anghie ‘99 [Antony . and consciously seek to avoid. for instance. Because it was in fact Europe and not America. and is deeply ingrained in popular understandings. Buzan and Little. and later radiated outwards through for history is unimportant if the defining feature of the international order is considered to be the transhistorical fact of ‘anarchy’: thus Kenneth Waltz. and its capacity to comprehend changes that may lie in the future. however. has its origins in Europe and must be understood with reference to a specifically European history.or as Hedley Bull and Watson had put it sixteen years earlier. Eurocentrism. Winter 1999. came to encompass the globe. and how an order which. He earned an S. And yet. armies and the like. from Harvard Law School. Ironically. and an LL.Professor Anghie received a B. from Monash University in Melbourne.e-ir. where he is also Director of the Centre for Postcolonial Studies. Finding the Peripheries: Sovereignty and Colonialism in Nineteenth-Century International Law. by which the political form of the modern state was transposed onto the rest of the world”. first developed in Europe in the early modern period.B. forged over the preceding few centuries.*i+ There are. writes that “the enduring anarchic character of international politics accounts for the striking sameness in the quality of international life through the millennia…”.colonelby. 8/24/12. which informs many disciplines. It was not until the end of the nineteenth . Sanjay ’12 (Seth. and political organizations. However. that is. it is not our perspective but the historical record itself that can be called Eurocentric. I refer of course to the ‘English School’. is one which presumes that capitalism began in Europe. 7/28/2014.”*iii+This narrative of the expansion of political forms is modelled on the conventional account of the expansion of economic and social forms.S International law is universal. that Eurocentrism is warranted for the modern period. http://www. unified the A great deal of IR displays little interest in history. the universality of international law is a relatively recent development. 1-3] B.J. “The Limits of International Relations Theory: A Postcolonial Critique”. at least in its most basic features. in so doing. This conventional account. Professor of Politics at Goldsmiths. or Africa that first dominated and. and since “the modern state is a quintessentially European phenomenon…it is therefore to Europe’s story that one has to look to explain it.A. for instance. the legacy of Europe’s now vanished ascendancy. But its Eurocentric assumptions ‘make sense for most of the modern era’ for there is no doubt that the existing international system. forthcoming December 2012).L – International Law Eurocentric ideology is the foundation of the world’s decision making.

Africa. which was ineluctably European and was now faced with the quandary of accommodating these outsiders. according to the positivist jurisprudence of the time. as in the case of the doctrine of selfdetermination. later. as the “Age of Empire. have. mainly in political terms. The late nineteenth century was also the period in which positivism decisively replaced naturalism as the principal jurisprudential technique of the discipline of international law. constituted the central theoretical debate of the discipline over the last century. Such a confrontation poses no conceptual difficulties for the positivist jurist who basically resolves the issue by arguing that the sovereign state can do as it wishes with regard to the non-sovereign entity. both in terms of their governance and international jurisprudence. as well as the critiques of these at. But for the international lawyers. and the Pacific were controlled by the major European states.tempts. This Article focuses on the relationship between positivism and colonialism. This resolution was profoundly important from a political point of view as its operation resulted in the universalization of international law. has generated the problem that governs the major theoretical inquiries into the discipline: how can legal order be created among sovereign states? Attempts to resolve this problem. the conquest of large parts of Asia. because the colonial confrontation was not a confrontation between two sovereign states. which introduce the subject by outlining the problem and offering some sort of solution to it.[8] . My interest lies in examining the way in which positivism dealt with the colonial confrontation. The conceptualization of the problem in this way suggested again that the non-European world was completely peripheral to the discipline proper. I seek not only to outline an architecture of the legal framework. the fundamental positivist position. on the whole. Africa. but also to question extant understandings of the relationship between colonialism and positivism and the significance of the nineteenth-century colonial encounter for the discipline as a whole.century that a set of doctrines was established as applicable to all states. this is an attempt to examine how positivism sought to account for the expansion of European Empires and for the dispossession of various peoples stemming therefrom. was lacking in sovereignty. This appears in. that states are the principal actors of international law and they are bound only by that to which they have consented. Particularly. colonial problems constituted a distinct set of issues that were principally not of a theoretical. but rather a political character: how the colonized peoples should be governed and. and it was only the disconcerting prospect of Africans and Asians acquiring sovereignty in the 1950s and 1960s that alerted international lawyers to the existence of a multicultural world. Even when the colonies were perceived to challenge some of the fundamental assumptions of the discipline. The universalization of international law was principally a consequence of the imperial expansion that took place towards the end of the “long nineteenth century.*6+ The defining character of this problem to the discipline of international law is further reflected by the structure of many of the major textbooks of international law. continues to operate as the basic premise of the international legal system. Positivism. In studying this relationship. or Europe.evitable. virtually all the territories of Asia. colonies were often exasperatingly troublesome. which was termed by one eminent historian. Despite subsequent attempts to reformulate the foundations of international law. Positivist jurisprudence is premised on the notion of the primacy of the state. whether these were in Asia. the colonial world is relegated to both the geographical and theoretical peripheries of the discipline.”*4+ By 1914. Certainly. what role international law should play in decolonization.[7] Colonialism features only incidentally within this scheme. furthermore. Eric Hobsbawm.”[2] The conquest of non-European [3] peoples for economic and political advantage was the most prominent feature of this period. and the partitioning of Africa. but between a sovereign European state and a non-European state that.[5] Positivism was the new analytic apparatus used by the jurists of the time to account for the events that culminated in the universalization of international law and the formulation of a body of principles that was understood to apply globally as a result of the annexation of “unoccupied” territories such as the Australian continent. after numerous colonial wars. such challenges were perceived. it seemingly poses no theoretical difficulties. which lacks the legal personality to assert any legal opposition. consequently. Nevertheless. which was used in the 1960s and 1970s to effect the transformation of colonial territories into sovereign states. as a threat to a stable and established system of international law. resulting in the assimilation of all these non-European peoples into a system of law that was fundamentally European in that it derived from European thought and experience.

Reagan duly proclaimed the EEZ of the United States.8 million square kilometres—half as much again as that of the 48 mainland states.900 kilometres long. the Pacific and the Gulf of Mexico. below). and its EEZ accounts for around one-third of the whole exclusive zone of Alaska. “IMPERIAL ARCHIPELAGOS”. The massacre of Native Americans at Wounded Knee in 1890 brought the construction of the continental nation-state to a conclusion. including the Philippines. the total US exclusive zone around its Pacific island territories amounts to 5. and could also be used to make saltpetre for gunpowder. the US has a further 9. but formally recognized the legality of the EEZ. In that year. stretching from Louisiana up to Montana and North Dakota. The Louisiana Purchase of 1803 transferred to US ownership a vast swathe of France’s colonial possessions. endowing the US with long coastlines facing on to the Atlantic. encompassing more than 12 million square kilometres. This derives from several different sources of territorial acquisition. The total EEZ of Alaska is 3. However. March-April 2013. are animated by a new sensation. the mere joy of fighting. In addition to the EEZ of the fortyeight states.000. He is the Director of the Chinese Executive Leadership Programme (CELP).2 million. It is the largest of any state by a wide margin. http://newleftreview. Their combined land area is just 87 square kilometres.S The United States chose not to sign the UN Convention on the Law of the The territory was acquired. Washington still possesses most of the groups acquired under the Act. the US Bureau of the Census officially declared the frontier complete. “IMPERIAL ARCHIPELAGOS”.proxy. and environmental destruction. Johnston Atoll. An editorial in the Washington Post on the eve of the Spanish–American War noted the emergence of ‘a new appetite. they have a total exclusive economic zone of 1. the yearning to show our strength . Nevada. The taste of Empire is in the mouth of the people even as the taste of blood in the jungle.umich. The Mexican War of 1846–48 concluded with the absorption of the territories of New Mexico. when a group consisting mainly of American businessmen overthrew the monarchy. larger by a fifth than the land area of the United States. almost as large as that of the entire east and west coast of the US combined. They are little more than rocks and have no permanent human inhabitants.55 million square kilometres. Nolan 13 [Peter . Within this total. Guam and Wake Island. of course. Apart from Alaska and the Aleutian island chain.lib. Palmyra Atoll and Kingman Reef. Colonialism turns the case – exclusive economic zones in the ocean cause disease. which Imperial Russia colonized in the eighteenth century. towards Russia’s Kamchatka peninsula.L – EEZ Their defense of the “EEZ” ignores the colonial history that made it possible – The Law of the Sea is part of the imperial project of expand and control. interest. A year after UNCLOS was enacted. land hunger. 7/28/2014]B. The Aleutian chain is 1. The original thirteen states at Independence came into existence through the expropriation by white colonial settlers of the lands occupied by Native Americans. The majority of this total is contributed by territories annexed in 1856 under the Guano Islands Act. The largest component consists of the state of Alaska and the Aleutian Island chain.95 million square kilometres. He is the Director of the Chinese Executive Leadership Programme (CELP). Jarvis Island. California and Texas.6 million square kilometres of EEZ in the Pacific Ocean. and considerably larger than China’s undisputed EEZ (see Table 4. New Left Review.’ *7+ As a result of victory over Spain in 1898. Ambition. University of Cambridge. University of Cambridge. just 90 square kilometres of land area of uninhabited islands accounts for an exclusive economic zone of 1.holds the Chong Hua Chair in Chinese Development and is Director of the University’s Centre of Development Studies. the US not only gained effective control of Cuba and Puerto Rico.holds the Chong Hua Chair in Chinese Development and is Director of the University’s Centre of Development Studies. the US was turning its attentions to overseas expansion. By the 1890s. *6+ The forty-eight states of the continental USA have an EEZ of 2.45 million square kilometres in total. guano was a valuable source of agricultural fertilizer.8 million square kilometres. ‘Reagan’s proclamation can be characterized as the largest territorial acquisition in the history of the United States’. Hawaii was an independent kingdom from 1801 to 1893. the latter two remain US territories today. Utah. including the Howland and Baker Islands. due to their dispersion across the ocean. through the long westward extension of the frontier. whatever it may be. . In 1867 the US government purchased this vast territory from Russia for $7. stretching out from Alaska’s southwestern tip across the Pacific Ocean. New Left Review. primarily through military action. Nolan 13 [Peter . . part of Colorado. violence. It has a population of just over 4. In the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. according to one legal scholar. . but also acquired a string of territories across the Pacific. Arizona.

conducted under the orders of the British Admiralty and supported by the Royal Society. were a critically important stimulus to the West’s intervention in the region. only 100–200 of the aboriginal population survived.000 Maoris may have been killed in a series of brutal confrontations with British troops. the war in New Caledonia between French colonists and indigenous inhabitants was equally bloody. including Hawaii.March-April 2013. Prior to Cook’s arrival in 1778. Although much smaller in scale. . laying waste to Maori villages and destroying crops. . when as many as Cook was accompanied by scientists who provided a detailed record of the wildlife they encountered. Prior to the arrival of Western colonists. including vast numbers of birds. *11+ Within just five years. The early phases of colonialism. Colonial forces frequently used ‘scorched earth’ out of an estimated 5. The US was the leader in this industry. Aborigines were ‘continually hunted and tracked down like fallow deer.’ By the 1880s commercial whaling had been abandoned over large areas of the Pacific Ocean. in particular. the Marquesas and Easter Island. Tahiti. the settler population—mainly convicts—cleared the indigenous people off their land through a ferocious manhunt. smallpox and dysentery was mainly responsible for the large population declines on many Pacific islands. By the 1830s fur seals in the Southern Ocean were virtually extinct.000. seals and whales. In 1830 Tasmania was put under martial law. The most severe was in New Zealand. between 1843 and 1872. On each of his expeditions there. A combination of venereal disease. and the French authorities responded with attacks on their villages and crops. New Zealand and the Pacific islands was relatively small. once captured.proxy. from the late nineteenth century to the late twentieth. are deported. the West’s own experience in managing resources within these areas hardly offers an adequate model. Sexually transmitted diseases played an especially important role. which came south in the summer breeding season. It was hoped that establishing clear national property rights over those resources would transform the areas in question from openaccess ‘global commons’ into regions of conservation. By 1846 New England alone had 735 whalers. whalers and ordinary commercial shipping brought with it a thriving sex industry. A full-scale Kanaka uprising erupted in 1878. tuberculosis. 7/28/2014]B. the greatly increased number of sealers. had a profoundly negative impact on the Pacific Ocean’s animal population. [10] The impact on human populations was on a comparable scale. to the islands of the Bass Strait’. Hawaii’s population was around a quarter of a million on conservative estimates. . France annexed the territory in 1853. each averaging a kill of 100 whales per voyage. combed these vast icy oceans so thoroughly that no large marine animal was to be easily found any more. One of the most surprising and striking results of the expeditions was the superabundance of wildlife they discovered in the Great Southern Ocean.S Light footprints? An important justification for the UN’s establishment of the concept of the ‘exclusive economic zone’ was the desire to reduce damage to exhaustible natural resources. and may have been significantly higher. and often killed without compunction. Nevertheless. China or the countries bordering the South China Sea. the combined indigenous population of Australia. The detailed accounts in Cook’s journals and accompanying maps stimulated a wave of commercial exploitation of the southern seas by European and American ships. singly or in parties.lib. http://newleftreview.umich. Indigenous people in the Pacific were typically treated as sub-human. The spread of disease had an even more serious impact on the demography of the Pacific territories. The main attack was then directed at the whale population. However. numerous conflicts occurred between the Western colonists and the indigenous peoples. and. The three epic voyages of Captain James Cook between 1768 and 1780. Seals were killed mainly for their valuable skin and whales mainly for their oil. establishing colonial rule thus did not present the same challenge as in India. and violent conflicts ensued as French settlers attempted to expropriate land from the native Kanaka inhabitants. In the case of Tasmania. particularly over land. as well as violent sexual attacks on indigenous women. The killing went on until there was virtually nothing left to kill: ‘In a period of little more than 50 years—roughly from the 1780s to the 1840s—these little ships with their polyglot crews .

20 This involves both an epistemological and an empirical claim.. We must.html/_res/id%3Dsa_ File1/5052_Cohenforweb. to the global political scene. The network structure of interaction is allegedly based on the disaggregation of the state and its sovereignty: it enables officials in each domain to solve common problems. and legislative channels that operate independently of one another without any claim to represent “the state” as a unitary entity. 2014)//bb The first approach focuses on the emergence of new forms of transnational governance that have allegedly replaced unitary states as the key actors in the global political system. each of which functions autonomously in the global political system. share information. replacing diplomacy and interstate “Whose Sovereignty? Empire Versus International Law” 2004. coordinate policy. This conceptual shift will allow the core components of the new world order to come into view: horizontal and vertical transgovernmental networks.L – Nation State Focus Conceptual shift needed to allow new world order to come into view Cohen ‘4 (Jean L. Intergovernmental relations now occur primarily through a multiplicity of horizontal networks linking government officials in distinct transnational judicial. https://www. and punish violators of global law without claming to do so in the name of the state as a whole. regulatory.pdf&sa=U&ei=48RTU_b4N_SQ4gSey4HYDQ&ved=0CFcQFjAO&usg=AF QjCNFcq1AZ6zf0me1g3nXL9toL7zDvRA Accessed July 27th. first. PhD. we must open up the black box of the state and apply the idea of the separation of powers. these linkages comprise the main loci of global governance and law making. Professor of Political Thought.carnegiecouncil. harmonize rules. thus far restricted to domestic governments. stop imagining the international system as a system of states—unitary entities like billiard balls. Together with vertical governmental networks between national and supranational counterparts.21 The empirical claim is that the state has been disaggregated into its component parts.22 . In order to perceive its new structural features. generalize normative expectations. Columbia University.

New cartographic techniques have developed over the years that would allow for more complex representations but traditional representations that reinforce state power relations continue manifest the fixed view of ocean space. http://citation. a medium across which power is projected and a seabed (surface) important only as a source of future resources (deep seabed mining). maps continue to flatten oceans. html?phpsessid=m3m08arhga3gupqouuddmi3mg5)mc space is pulverized by private property and the scientific and technical capacity to treat space on ever more vast levels (2009). Use of maps also decontextualizes and reduces the complexity of the relations between humans and nature (Harvey 1989). Maps of ocean space have served to reinforce the representations of the western construction of the ocean as surfaces – the surface of the water as a As Lefebvre describes it. “Ocean Governance: High Seas and the Shift in Construction of Ocean Space as Social Space”. Thus the complexity of ocean space was undermined and ignored as its three-D nature was erased. It is easily possible to use current technology to create three-dimensional ocean maps as a norm with a transparent ocean layer to keep the water column visible. reinforce our constructed view of surfaces and maintain present state power relations. Rather than use such maps in negotiations between countries or with policy-makers that would show a more complex construction of ocean space. Mobile forms of traditional land tenure are lost and the full complexity of ocean space as a dynamic three-dimensional space is reduced to surfaces – the sea surface and sea bottom (Pramano & Garmendia 2004). 7/28/14. non-space and therefore not social space to be governed – only the resources within it had use value. .com/meta/p_mla_apa_research_citation/4/1/7/0/5/p417052_index.allacademic. This facilitates the dispossession of people ( including from the ocean if when one considers Hau’ofa’s analysis the creation of “Pacific Islanders” now bounded by land). Genevra 10 (Garmendia Genevra. The water column was invisible.L – Mapping The aff’s desire to map space flattens the complexity of the ocean and locks in western modes of thinking. highway to connect land spaces. Feb 12 2010.

including today’s Australia. Polynesia. Yet the vast expanse of EEZs derived from the West’s colonial expansion in and around the Pacific Ocean. and ratified by UNCLOS. Nolan 13 [Peter .edu/II/80/peter-nolan-imperialarchipelagos.lib. However. dwarfs by an enormous margin the territories that are in dispute between China and its immediate neighbours in the South China Sea (Table 6). it chose not to do so. China has existed as a unified state for many hundreds of years. deriving from colonial conquest. By the end of the nineteenth century. yet it eclipses by some distance the area and resources that are in contention in the South China Sea.umich. with the Pacific Ocean forming its ‘backyard’. It is as though the Western media have succeeded in focusing the minds of their populations on a mouse. From early in its history China possessed the technological and administrative capability to invade Southeast Asia. Much of the analysis of the dispute over the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands has also focused on the possibility that China might gain control over the natural resources in or under the South China Sea. The former imperial powers’ acquisition of control over vast marine territories and resources through UNCLOS has received negligible attention other than in specialist legal’ [16] String of pearls It is often alleged in the Western press that Beijing has a long-run ‘string of pearls’ strategy to build a succession of overseas bases in Southeast Asia and the Indian Ocean. the Cape of Good Hope and Australia. March-April 2013. while China itself had been reduced to the status of a beggar. New Left Review.S We may look to the wide extent of the Americas. New Zealand and the other archipelagos. He is the Director of the Chinese Executive Leadership Programme (CELP).holds the Chong Hua Chair in Chinese Development and is Director of the University’s Centre of Development Studies. “IMPERIAL ARCHIPELAGOS”. as well as the sparsely populated territories of the Pacific.L – “South China Sea” Advantage Representing the South China Sea as a site of Chinese military competition hides the US history of exploitation. the Western powers had turned the Pacific Ocean into their own ‘backyard’ and had colonized most of the territories around the South China Sea. when a mighty elephant stands behind them unnoticed.proxy. Its drastically altered position was symbolized by the flood of millions of impoverished Chinese migrants to work in the mainly Western-owned mines and plantations around the South China Sea and on the widely scattered Pacific islands. http://newleftreview. The contrast in treatment of the two issues is especially disturbing in view of the talk of a new ‘Peloponnesian War’ being triggered by disputes over the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands. 7/28/2014]B. University of Cambridge. and we find the same result. The West’s preoccupation with Beijing’s involvement in the South China Sea contrasts sharply with the complete absence of discussion of the West’s vast exclusive economic zones in the region. .

com/meta/p_mla_apa_research_citation/4/1/7/0/5/p417052_index. In many countries this meant the need to create a property rights regime so that the rule of law could secure foreign investment. fractured. With occasional exceptions around very near shore property. Property rights thus continue to be rooted in the land but operate differently in the ocean. which according to Sack means that a space is considered empty if it is “devoid of socially or economically valuable artifacts or things that were intended to be controlled. has occurred.allacademic. . Genevra 10 (Garmendia Genevra. “Ocean Governance: High Seas and the Shift in Construction of Ocean Space as Social Space”. http://citation. ocean space itself has not been subject to property rights. State Territorializaton. As a result. 7/28/14. hierarchized. Once again the container is ignored by Individual Transferable Quotas (ITQs) are a market device designed to give property rights to fisherman for a certain share of the allowable fish catch.L – Property Rights Property rights are western – results in exploitation. like land space. state territorialization of ocean space. Space that were unoccupied become commodified for its use value. people who traditionally lived along the coast and had no tradition or documented history of property rights were displacement. people and things (Sack 1986). Feb 12 2010. Aid and loans have been given to many coastal developing nations to begin shrimp aquaculture along the shoreline as high value crop that can bring in foreign revenue. Ocean Space and Governance While property rights have not generally been applied to ocean space. a system of property rights has been recently been created for resources contained within ocean space.” The modern state production of space is homogenous. Instead. html?phpsessid=m3m08arhga3gupqouuddmi3mg5)mc This tradition of property rights and land appropriation continues to play out on the land side of the ocean/land boundary as recently as the past twenty years with the growth of shrimp farming. The state uses space to control places (Lefebvre 2009) and does so through a process of territorialization – a strategy to assert control of access to an area.

and the precarious and contested nature of modernity can be more readily seen. However. http://www. a consequence or product which has been naturalised such that it can seem to be a fact. including produced by the knowledges which posited him. Professor of Politics at Goldsmiths. Foucault’s writings have in turn influenced those who have similarly sought to show how the individual was produced. was forged on the anvil of Greek philosophy. rational and unitary individual is not a fact of the world. nation and the international order. been erased.[xvi]The free. and the marks of its manufacture have. awaiting discovery). equal. like the nation and state. Partly inspired by Nietzsche’s work. seeing in effects a consequence of the exercise of the will. It is always a function of strategies and tactics. has had more success in naturalising the individual than mainstream IR theory has had in naturalising state. Mainstream IR seems content to naturalize what it could problematize.the fact that in the international realm meanings have not become stabilized. but rather. and feeling guilt.that makes ‘the international’ especially interesting. people. while cultures and nations are historical and constructed. party. equipped with the capacity for willing. family or corporation” finally lifted in Renaissance Italy. whether cultures or nations. and to that degree. the starting point of knowledge. including social. even if not in the sense that mainstream IR usually appreciates it. Postcolonial Theory and International Relations: A Critical Introduction (Routledge. economic and discursive transformations. s/he is a product of processes and discourses. but rather that the former has stabilised. over In the preceding section I suggested that we cannot treat collectivities. one could say.‘The international’ is a realm where endless and seemingly irresolvable contestations. Christian morality and Roman law. 8/24/12. University of London. who in Genealogy of Morals and other writings argued that the individual capable of making promises. in which the “veil” which made man “conscious of himself only as a member of a race. Hobbes shows that sovereignty is the name and form of a capacity to impose and stabilize meanings.testify to the fact that few things have become so naturalised that they are not potentially subject to contestation. But this does not mean that individuals are natural. rational and unitary individual presumed by the social sciences as an incontestable fact is no such thing. This becomes especially apparent in the international realm. few presumptions so stabilised that they are not periodically destabilised. contingent and variable. for the most part. rather than ‘discovered’ by a knowledge which finally recognised what had always been there. but invoking the value of “sovereignty” secures mainstream IR knowledge. Sanjay ’12 (Seth. awaiting to be unveiled (as in Jacob Burckhardt’s classic account. with the struggles that went into their making often still inscribed on their bodies. which continue to be contingent and contested. Liberal political theory. and to assume that which it should deconstruct: whence the need for its critique. forthcoming December 2012). We are accustomed to think that the social contract theorists of the seventeenth century awoke to the fact that men are born free. However there are those who have also sought to show that the free. equal. In what is still one of the most illuminating texts on the subject. the discipline which makes the international its object of its enquiry is. where he is also Director of the Centre for Postcolonial Studies. enabling man to recognise himself as a “spiritual individual”*xv+). In contrast and contestation with accounts which trace the emergence into sunlight of the individual subject who had once been shrouded in darkness (but who nonetheless had always been there. there are now accounts which trace the creation of this individual through various historical processes. where no sovereignty has yet succeeded in imposing stable meanings. In this sense. Leviathan. “The Limits of International Relations Theory: A Postcolonial Critique”. It is not that the individual is real and that culture and nation are cobbled together and contingent. rather than a guide to it. an obstacle to a recognition and exploration of this. desiring and promising. even by analogy. The elements which have produced it as a fact include those knowledges and discourses which purport to simply recognise and represent the fact that they have helped to produce. such is not the case with state and nation. as if they were like individuals.e-ir. there is something to the importance accorded to the sovereignty/anarchy distinction. rational and equal.over meanings and morals as much as resources and power. . struggles and conflicts.L – Sovereignty The nation-state system is in flux.It is precisely this. The prime source for such ‘sceptical’ modes of thinking is of course Nietzsche.


Maintaining ‘law and order’ in the conquered nations requires a legal system and doctrine to uphold imperial rule. International law. investigate international crime and arrest. destroy and occupy independent countries. A state of constant warfare raises the cost of imperial maintenance. whether issued directly by executive. What has not been examined fully is the over-arching legal architecture which informs. especially through overt and covert military intervention. Boatloads of important studies have documented how imperial countries have seized and pillaged the resources of mineral-rich and agriculturally productive countries. Legal . is applied only to the weaker powers and to regimes designated by the imperial powers as ‘violators’. The very judicial processes. ground and naval armed forces to ensure the supremacy of imperial law. Petras 2012. Writer at Global Research. Writer at Global Research. to the extent that it is effective. imperial legal experts. regimes and people seeking redress from imperial war crimes and economic pillage. Financial critics have provided abundant data on the ways in which imperial creditors have extracted onerous rents. Imperial law supersedes international law simply because imperial law is backed by brute force. it possesses imperial/colonial air. Legality is really an extension of imperial conquest by other means. judicial and police officials. military or administrative bodies. royalties and debt payments from indebted countries and their taxpayers. They cite imperial legal doctrine to justify their intervention to repress a subject people in revolt. including the appointment of judges and prosecutors who interpret international law. Force. Debt Collection and Colonization” http://www. which the rulers and citizens claim to uphold. the part of ‘puppet’ or ‘client’ rulers usually precipitate popular rebellions. especially in the area of the Geneva protocols such as war crimes and crimes against humanity. superior to international law and protocols fashioned by non-imperial authorities and legal experts. giving the facade of legitimacy to the outside world . especially against independent nations and rulers. workers. especially in imperial democracies undermines the sense of civic virtue.globalresearch. the maintenance and consolidation of empires requires a legal framework. judicial. Where compliant rulers ‘invite’ or ‘submit’ to imperial domination. pillage and debt collection. 2014)MS Introduction By now we are familiar with imperial states using their military power to attack. a not insignificant basis for strengthening the political claims of countries. in consort with multi-national corporations.2NC Impact Changes within international law doesn’t challenge IMPERIAL law which will always trump the plan – the law itself is a tool that enforces imperialism – the impact is exceptional violence. Legal doctrines precede. The legality of imperial activity is based largely on the imperial state’s judicial system and its own legal experts. justifies and facilitates imperial wars. Imperial legal pronouncements. In other words. are deemed the ‘supreme law of the universe’. have always been an essential part of empire-building.2012. international law lacks an effective enforcement mechanism. such acts of treason on legal framework to justify or exempt imperial-state activity. Their legal theories and opinions are always presented as over-ruling international law as well as the laws of the countries targeted for imperial intervention. rulings and legal precedents precede. scholars and judges have elaborated a The Uses of Imperial Law Empire-building throughout history is the result of conquest – the use or threat of superior military force. The Centrality of Imperial Law While force and violence. at best. In contrast. it does not operate in a legal vacuum: Judicial institutions. Moreover. This does not imply that imperial rulers totally discard international law: they just apply it selectively to their adversaries. the application and jurisdiction of international law is selective and subject to constraints imposed by the configurations of imperial and national power. July 30. which are then suppressed by joint imperial and collaborator armies. in order to justify imperial intervention and aggression – Hence the ‘legal bases’ for dismantling Yugoslavia or invading Iraq and assassinating its rulers. international law. The US global empire is no exception. “Legal Imperialism and the international Law: Legal Foundations for War Crimes. While empires arose through the direct or indirect use of unbridled force. employees and productive sectors. accompany and follow the expansion and consolidation of empire for several reasons. sentence and punish ‘guilty’ parties are under to the influence of the reigning imperial powers. attracting collaborator classes and individuals and providing the basis for the recruitment of local military. can provide a ‘moral’ December 03. To counter the claims and judgments pertaining to international law. (James Petras. accompany and follow the process of empire building.

torture and arbitrary arrests as compatible with the ‘constitutional order’ by claiming imminent and constant threats to the security of the imperial state. prejudicing already agreed upon payments to the majority of creditors who had negotiated an earlier debt-restructuring arrangement. override officials from other branches of their own imperial government and economic sectors. Conclusion Clearly in a world imperial system there can be no independent judicial bodies who abide by universally accepted legal codes. they also instrumentalize and. coercion. such as US Presidents Bush and Obama. Judicial officials are not only ‘instruments’ of closely related imperial political and economic powers. they function in accordance with ‘imperial jurisprudence’ and are faithful to the legal doctrines of empire building. Each set of judicial authorities reflect and actively promote policies favoring and extending their imperial prerogatives. may rule in favor of one group of creditors thereby prejudicing others. banks. The empire’s legal experts redefine assassinations. prosecute and levy severe fines and even jail sentences on banks. above all else. Imperial law. have been provided with the legal power to undertake cross-national ‘targeted’ assassinations of opponents using predator drones and ordering military intervention. creating lawlessness and chaos among its victims. even after the local or national courts have ruled such claims unlawful. he would be quickly condemned for dereliction of duty and/or immoral behavior and impeached or overthrown. imperial rulers are not ‘lawless’ as some liberal critics would argue. Law is not simply part of the superstructure “reflecting” the power of economic or political institutions: it also guides and directs political and economic institutions committing material resources to implement imperial doctrines. applied international law to prosecute those carrying out brutal imperial policy. pillage of public treasury and destruction of democratic institutions. There are rare exceptions where a judge will rule against a particular imperial policy but over the long run imperial law guides judicial opinions Imperial legal doctrines and judicial decisions set the groundwork for imperial wars and economic pillage. If an imperial ruler pursued a “constitutional agenda” eroding imperial prerogatives or. In this sense. Imperial clients who obey their imperial overlords are favored by imperial laws while imperial laws are applied against their adversaries. Judges. . individuals and financial institutions of their competitor imperial countries. Executives. thereby strengthening the economic position of their own ‘national’ imperial firms. It is pointless to argue that most imperial leaders trample on constitutional guarantees and international laws. with ties to particular financial sectors. in clear violation of international law and national sovereignty. In a recent ruling. a New York judge ruled in favor of the demands by minority creditors that the Argentine government make ‘full payment’ on longstanding national debt in.rulings are issued by the imperial judiciary to force states to comply with the economic demands of multi-national corporations. even worse. Imperial legal doctrine has played a central role in justifying and providing a basis for the exercise of international terrorism. Imperial judicial and administrative agencies selectively investigate. Within each ‘tier’ there are further refinements: Competing imperial legal systems adjudicate in favor of their partisan political and economic elites. creditors and speculators. Imperial law and judicial rulings form the basis for imperial subjugation on the assumption that the world legal systems are multi-tiered: Imperialcentered legal systems supersede those of less powerful states. Imperial law protects and provides sanctuary and financial protection to convicted former collaborator-rulers charged with human rights crimes. in some cases. ‘legalizes’ aggression and economic pillage and undermines the laws of targeted countries.

Simpson 11 [Michael . .G.D.. But it should also be stocked in the American Indian/ Indigenous Studies and History sections. policy and practice. 11/3/2014. the choice to annihilate the perceived Other is deeply ingrained in U. Tribal College Journal.Exceptionalism Colonial international law is exceptionalist and destroys democracy. policy toward global terrorism isn’t anything new. as well as in the Serious Stuff We Need to Confront for Human Survival his B. the book explains how the United States has claimed itself the greatest beacon of freedom.S Review by Michael W. the United States was confronted with an embarrassment when it was revealed that Osama bin Laden’s secret code name was Geronimo. This book explains why we should not be surprised that such was the case. This book explains the connections to and the continuations from American colonists to the “war on terror” and how the United States both claims international law and excepts itself from it. It contains an especially enlightening exposition on federal Indian law. Earlier this year. Simpson The cover for this book shows that it is slated for the law section of the bookstore.S.. and Ph. He has been a journalist and cultural consultant on the Oregon coast for ten years.S. “Meeting the Enemy: American Exceptionalism and International Law”. This important piece of work needs to be read and discussed at every tribal college. 7/27/2014] B. The alleged newness of U. liberty.S. . we get a glimpse at how American exceptionalism can be confronted and why it is important for us all to do so. Further. http://www. M. and democracy while justifying the denial of such to a substantial number of persons and groups over time. Finally.

from Harvard Law School. He earned an S. subordinate.B. and by questioning this framework. Harvard International Law Journal / Vol. and the tragedies and ironies that attend it.Professor Anghie received a B.S My interest lies. to focus on positivism’s triumphant suppression of the non-European world.”12 In attempting this sort of a history. the extension and universalization of the European experience. Asia. and the Pacific were finally assimilated into a European international law. rather. even while describing how it came into being. Winter 1999. it is incorrect to see the colonial encounter as a series of problems that were effortlessly resolved by the simple application of the formidable intellectual resources of positivism. from the time of its origin. positivists were engaged in an ongoing struggle to define. http://teachers.Genocide International laws have been deeply entrenched by Euro-centric ideals and beliefs. however.pdf. and exclude the uncivilized native. This is the history I am examining. which is achieved by transmuting it into the major theoretical problem of the discipline. 40 19999 / Sovereignty and Colonialism in International Law.14 This in turn is part of a larger project that has been the preoccupation of many jurists of the non-European world: to understand the relationship between international law and colonialism in order to formulate . a task that was crucial to the positivist self-image. Rather.13 Despite this. present even among writers such as Alexandrowicz who are sympathetic to the injustices of colonialism. 6-7] B. to the specificities of European history. sovereignty was constituted and shaped through colonialism. not only in the important point that positivism legitimized conquest and dispossession. from Monash University in Melbourne. Finding the Peripheries: Sovereignty and Colonialism in Nineteenth-Century International Law. The violence of positivist language in relation to non-European peoples is hard to overlook. 7/28/2014.# . In contrast to the view that the colonial confrontation illuminates a minor and negligible aspect of sovereignty doctrine.11 My argument is that what passes now as the defining dilemma of the legitimizing this dispossession was contradictory and incoherent. and legitimizing the most extreme violence against them. the problem of order among states. Positivists developed an elaborate vocabulary for denigrating these peoples. Colonialism cannot be accounted for as an example of the application of sovereignty. all in the furtherance of the civilizing mission—the discharge of the white man’s burden. there is only one means of relating the history of the non-European world. but also in the reverse relationship—in identifying how notions of positivism and sovereignty were themselves shaped by the encounter. is a problem that has been peculiar. the process by which peoples of Africa. Within the axiomatic framework of positivism. Additionally. which decrees that European states are sovereign while non-European states are my argument is that colonial problems posed a significant and ultimately insuperable set of challenges to positivism and its pretensions to develop a set of doctrines that could coherently account for native personality. the Americas. and this the positivists proceed to do: it is a history of the civilizing mission. The brutal realities of conquest and dispossession can hardly be ameliorated by asserting that the legal frame. has the effect of suppressing and subordinating other histories of international law and the people to whom it has applied. I depart from the tendency. I argue.colonelby. the use of force. that it might be possible to open the way not only towards a different history of the discipline. but in an attempt to point to the “ambivalences.J. by interrogating how it was that sovereignty became the exclusive preserve of Europe.A.D. and an LL. But it is perhaps by pointing to these inconsistencies and ambiguities. contradictions. Pgs. my argument is that no adequate account of sovereignty can be given without analyzing the constitutive effect of colonialism on sovereignty. presenting them as suitable objects for conquest. Australia. not with a view to furthering it. justifies genocide and violence towards those not deemed to fit in Anghie 99 [Antony . but to a different understanding of the workings and effects of colonialism itself.

.more adequately the potential of the discipline to remedy the enduring inequities and imbalances that resulted from the colonial confrontation.

Note how it's insufficient to claim the mere mantle of Greatest Country on the Planet. such as Britain and Israel. genocide. The probability that you will happen to be born into The Objectively Greatest One. ethnic diversity.# . But we should at least regard those precepts with great suspicion. greater quantity in numerous other countries. the need to proclaim one's own unprecedented superiority so compelling. What I'm always so curious about is the thought process behind this formulation. is less than 1%. large immigrant populations. but will be born at the precise historical time when the greatest of all the countries ever to exist is thriving.led the condemnation (US allies with large nuclear stockpiles. North Korea tested a nuclear weapon. former columnist on civil liberties and US national security issues for the Guardian. vocally joined in). historical progress in correcting some of its worst crimes. what we were taught to believe about western nations closely aligned to our own). that it's hardly controversial to say it despite how nonsensical it is. National Review's Charles Cooke voiced these two assertions:Nobody can reasonably dispute that North Korea is governed by a monstrous regime and that it would be better if they lacked a nuclear weapons capability. especially when it's implanted in childhood. accessed 7/28/14) Last week. 2/18/13. and not because we've rationally assessed them to be true (or. That isn't what interests me about this. at this point. It's certainly true that Americans are justifiably proud of certain nationalistic attributes: class mobility. precisely because the probability is so great that we've embraced them because we were trained isn't it infinitely more likely that people view their society as objectively superior because they're inculcated from birth in all sorts of overt and subtle ways to believe this rather than because it's objectively true? It's akin to those who believe in their own great luck that they just happened to be born into the single religion that is the One True One rather than suspecting that they believe this because they were taught to from birth. given that human beings' perceptions are shaped by the assumptions of their culture and thus have a natural inclination to view their own culture as superior. This declaration always genuinely fascinates me. nation. That's possible. Add to that mix America's shameful attributes . then the probability is minute: that you will happen to be born not only into the greatest country on earth. We may get lucky and be trained from the start to believe what is actually true. and the US . As the US accounts for roughly 5% of the world's population. do they search for more likely explanations for why they believe this? In particular. It's similar to winning the lottery: something so mathematically improbable that while our intense desire to believe it may lead us on an emotional level wildly to overestimate its likelihood. http://www. our rational faculties should tell us that it is unlikely in the extreme and therefore to doubt seriously that it will happen. life-improving technological discoveries. But all of those virtues are found in equal if not. It's way beyond that: the Greatest Country Ever to Exist in All of Human History (why not The Greatest Ever in All of the Solar Systems?). or because our subjective influences led us to them. Those are fairly long odds for the happenstance of being born into the Greatest Country on Earth. Do people who wave the Greatest Country in All of Human History flag engage that thought process at all? I'm asking this genuinely. At the very least.its historic crimes of land theft. to subject them to particularly rigorous scrutiny. or cultural should be the ones treated with the greatest skepticism if we continue to embrace them in adulthood.theguardian. religious. So potent is the subjective prism.Violence US international policy cloaked in mindset of superiority – leads to violence and destruction Greenwald 13 (Glenn Greenwald. the tendency of the human brain to view the world from a self-centered perspective should render suspect any beliefs that affirm the objective superiority of oneself and one's own group. religious freedom.the country with the world's largest stockpile of that weapon and the only one in history to use it . The very notion that this distinction could be objectively or even meaningfully measured is absurd. What interests me here is that highlighted claim: that the US "is the greatest country in world history". That doesn't mean that what we're taught to believe from childhood is wrong or should be presumed erroneous. there are 179 countries on the planet. etc. tribe. that I'm always astounded at some people's certainty of their own objective superiority ("the greatest country in world history").whether nationalistic. But if you extend the claim to the Greatest Country that Has Ever Existed in All of Human History. a commitment to some basic liberties such as free speech and press. the probability that you will be born into it is 1/20. slavery and racism. Responding to unnamed commentators who apparently noted this contradiction. especially when it comes to those that teach us to believe in our own objective superiority or that of the group to which we belong. The opposite is true: it has been vested with the status of orthodoxy. Given the sheer improbability that it is true. But the desire to believe it is so strong. and therefore is entitled to do that which other countries are not. as in the case of the British Cooke. Depending on how you count. . the Guardian. The "truths" we're taught to believe from birth . to the extent there is such a thing.

very much like Wall Street criminals". Andrew Exum. including children. A British Tory will defend self-determination in Europe and oppose it in India with no feeling of inconsistency.that there are any legal or moral constraints on the US's right to use force in the world . and (especially) think tanks. and Cooke's tweet was quickly re-tweeted by a variety of commentators and self-proclaimed foreign policy experts from across the spectrum. media outlets. the notion that the US should be bound by the same rules as everyone else is the most scorned and marginalized. to lavish it with that title. That's why West. the foreign policy establishment of both parties. and there is almost no kind of outrage — torture.that the US. The key point is what constitutes West's transgression. It's the crux of hypocrisy.that is the prime taboo thought in the circles of DC Seriousness. His real crime is that he tacitly assumed that the US should be subjected to the same rules and constraints as all other nations in the world. This belief in America's unparalleled greatness has immense impact. is not bound by the same rules as others . And thus he had to be attacked. the Afghanistan War advocate and Senior Fellow at the Center for New American Security. but according to who does them. Politicians of all types routinely recite the same claim. the primary objective of America's foreign policy community. but also by editorial pages. but laughable. it is the violent enemy of law: the idea that everyone is bound by the same set of rules and restraints. Actions are held to be good or bad. US foreign policy and war crimes. assassination. got mocked as someone too silly to pay attention to: because he rejected that most cherished American license that is grounded in the self-loving exceptionalism so purely distilled by Cooke. the Princeton professor Cornel West denounced Presidents Nixon. but he has a remarkable capacity for not even hearing about them. including when most of them used their platforms and influence not only to persuade others to support the greatest crime of our generation . the Princeton professor.I can do X because I'm Good and you are barred from X because you are Bad . What Cooke expressed here . this nationalistic the most cherished and aggressively guarded principle in that circle." Preserving this warped morality. composed of its political offices. forgery. Leave aside the inane honorific of "national security professional" (is there a licensing agency for that?). if one wants to employ ad hominems: one should be listened to more. the bombing of civilians — which does not change its moral colour when it is committed by 'our' side . Conversely. not on their own merits. the US has the right to do things that other nations do not. on the grounds of one's own objective superiority. the aggressive attack on Iraq. Leave aside the noxious and pompous view that the views of non-national-security-professionals whatever that means . Bush and Obama as "war criminals". That's why our foreign policy discourse so rarely includes any discussion of those considerations. and majorities in both houses of Congress.should be ignored when it comes to militarism. And this is the premise . the creation of a worldwide torture regime. is always the animating sentiment behind nationalistic criminality. In other words. belittled and dismissed as irrelevant. It's pure ad hominem (in the classic sense of the logical fallacy): "who is "Cornell [sic] West" to think that anything he says should be even listened to by "national security professionals"? It's a declaration of exclusion: West is not a member in good standing of DC's Foreign Policy Community." 
Given that history. West did exactly that which is most scorned and taboo in DC policy circles. West specifically cited Obama's covert drone wars and killing of innocent people. and therefore his views can and should be ignored as Unserious and inconsequential. the law includes. Here's what Orwell said about that in Notes on Nationalism: 
"All nationalists have the power of not seeing resemblances between similar sets of facts. This is more than just an intellectual exercise. . As Samantha Power put it in 2007: "It was Washington's conventional wisdom that led us into the worst strategic blunder in the history of US foreign policy.and it becomes not just untenable. the primary premise shaping political discourse. Last week. This self-affirming belief . imprisonment without the universally invoked justification for all aggression. that he rejected the notion that America has the right to do what others nations may not. .its sprawling penal state. The nationalist not only does not disapprove of atrocities committed by his own side. and that is precisely the idea that is completely anathema to everything "national security professionals" believe (it also happens to be the central principle the Nuremberg Tribunal sought to affirm: "while this law is first applied against German aggressors. and US "national security professionals" simply do not recognize morality or legality when it comes to US aggression. West made a moral and legal argument. is. the use of hostages. the company it keeps on certain human rights abuses. disobedient regimes. And also leave aside the fact that the vast majority of so-called "national security professionals" have been disastrously wrong about virtually everything of significance over the last decade at least.but also to scorn war opponents as too Unserious to merit attention. but they're suspending the law. but rather used it to affirm a principle: as a result of its objective superiority. forced labour. its pervasive support for the world's worst tyrannies . if one is denied the title of "national security professional". Note that Cooke did not merely declare America's superiority. far and away. not less. saying that "they have killed innocent people in the name of the struggle for freedom. mass deportations. and if it is to serve a useful purpose it must condemn . The rush to invade Iraq was a position advocated by not only the Bush Administration. What West was doing there was rather straightforward: applying the same legal and moral rules to US aggression that he has applied to other countries and which the US applies to non-friendly.the aggressive attack on Iraq . A US president can be a "war criminal" only if legal and moral rules apply to his actions on equal terms as all other world leaders. It is not hyperbole to say that the sentiment expressed by Cooke is the overarching belief system of the US political and media class. due to its objective superiority. eagerly volunteered for the task: Note that there's no effort to engage Professor West's arguments. And most significantly of all. This eagerness to declare oneself exempt from the rules to which others are bound.

because. as he himself suggests. that is the only way to advance one's careerist goals as a "national security professional". In that crowd. Related to all of this.upon pain of being expelled from the circles of Seriousness . This is what he blamed it on: unfortunate tendencies within the foreign policy community. including those which sit here now in judgment"). from which all valid conclusions flow. only that the premise of American exceptionalism he endorses is the necessary ingredient for that belief and is typically the animating principle behind it. But what they are absolutely barred from doing . as Gelb says. making those arguments triggers nothing but ridicule and exclusion. in particular. Just two notes: (1) I explicitly said I was not contesting the view that North Korea's government is totalitarian and horrific. breeds and demands. US foreign policy analysts are permitted to question the tactics of the US government and military (will bombing these places succeed in the goals?). In 2009.know that they can retain relevance in and access to key government circles only if they affirm the unfettered right of the US to use force whenever and however it wants. and foreign policy commenters breeds allegiance to these American prerogatives and US power centers . I don't have time this afternoon to respond in detail. Les Gelb . Cooke's tweets aren't the slightest bit controversial. 2011 entitled "The Myth of American Exceptionalism" (see. Harvard professor Stephen Walt (is he a national security professional or someone to whom such professionals should listen?) wrote a post on this topic in late. They are permitted to argue that certain policies will not advance American interests (drones may be ineffective in stopping Terrorism). here. the unchallengeable truth of American exceptionalism. If you see a 20-something aspiring "foreign policy expert" or "international relations professional" in DC. I quoted Cooke because. is a mindlessly loyal defender of US force and prerogatives. and (2) I wasn't suggesting that Cooke himself believes that the US has the right to use force anywhere it wants and for whatever reasons. They're to argue that there are any legal or moral rules that restrict US aggression. The culture of DC think tanks.aggression by any other nations. namely the disposition and incentives to support wars to retain political and professional credibility. They don't get invited if they ask US political officials to imagine how they would react if some other country were routinely bombing US soil with drones and cruise missiles and assassinating whatever Americans they wanted to in secret and without trial. the numerous examples he cites of people of influence espousing what Cooke wrote here).incentivizes reflexive defenses of US government actions . this myth of American exceptionalism. UPDATE Cooke has a mostly thoughtful reply. This belief in the unfettered legal and moral right of the US to use force anywhere in the world for any reason it wants is sustained only by this belief in objective US superiority.wrote an extraordinary essay in the journal Democracy explaining why he and so many others in his circle supported the attack on Iraq. And the results are exactly what one would expect from an approach grounded in a belief system so patently irrational. "international relations" professionals." That someone like Les Gelb says that "national security professionals" have career incentives to support US wars "to retain political and professional credibility" is amazing. by design. . They can question tactics. and then devotes oneself to the pragmatic question of how that unfettered license can best be exploited to promote national interests. what you'll view. yet clearly true.the former Pentagon and State Department official and Chairman Emeritus of the Council on Foreign Relations: the ultimate "national security professional" . but never the supreme prerogative of the US. what he wrote is a pure distillation of a widely held view in US political discourse. One gets invited to those meetings only if one blindly affirms the right of the US to do whatever it wants. They don't get invited to those meetings if they argue that the US should be bound by the same rules and laws it imposes on others when it comes to the use of force. When I interviewed Gelb in 2010 regarding that quote. It's what that culture. when Dean suggested in 2003 that the US should support a system of universally applied rules because "we won't always have the strongest military": the very idea that the US should think of itself as subject to the same rules as the rest of the world is pure heresy). led by John Kerry. As the reaction to Cornel West shows. and especially to argue that the US is bound by the same set of rules which it seeks to impose on others (recall the intense attacks on Howard Dean. he elaborated that DC foreign policy experts "national security professionals" . so I'll leave it to readers to decide if you think he's offered a satisfactory explanation for what he thinks. In sum. think tank "scholars" don't get invited to important meetings by "national security professionals" in DC if they point out that the US is committing war crimes and that the US president is a war criminal. with some rare exceptions.


it could potentially support both the argument that Inuvialuit should participate in decisions regarding Beaufort Sea fossil fuels and that the interests of the Canadian state should not trump the vision expressed in A Circumpolar Inuit Declaration of Sovereignty in the Arctic (Inuit Circumpolar Council 2009). thinking the flux of sea ice as a basis for social and political life might provide the basis to meet challenging conditions with care. by actors in the name of sovereignty (Agnew 2009: 104‐6). The issue here is thinking about the possibilities for politics that are both sustained and foreclosed by centering an account of politics in terms of the dualism of the presence‐ absence of the modern state system and individual nation states (Walker 2010: 198). presents a set of conditions that calls for ethical responses. the fact that “Inuit Nunangat” signifies sea ice as a constitutive part of Inuit territory as experienced in everyday life. in different ways. It seems to me that if territory. which is that the material signified by Inuit signifiers of territory is disappearing. Vardy ‘11 (Mark. moving from configuring the world as sovereign nation‐states operating within a system of states to a reordering of inter‐ and intra state actors may not be so easy as sometimes presumed.pdf) mc To my mind. and as such is in the world in a concrete way. materially and discursively.2NC Framework/Alt Sovereignty is maintained discursively – the only ethical response is to rethink international law and refuse western modes of thought. rather than the rigid fixity of land. . Rethinking the territorial a priori as the spatial and temporal flux of sea ice. then an ethical response necessarily involves rethinking sovereignty without premising it upon fixed territory – land – as a basis.rha. but rather as a relational phenomena. “Sovereignty as a Social Issue: The Case of Inuit Nunangat” 2011. together with the fact that sea ice is melting. This view does not foreclose the potential actions and networks of assemblages through which Inuit groups can and are. sold. and if territory has been conceived as fixed land to be bought. Inuit forms of governance create the space and opportunity to reconceptualise Western practices of governance and the theories that support them. it is brought into being and enacted. instead of leaving Inuit understandings of sovereignty as an issue that is exclusive to local Arctic populations and their lived experiences. The response I advocate here involves questioning the ways territory. As Shadian (2010) argues. constitutionally sanctioned authorities. the traditions it embodies. Although this article is focused on sea ice reduction. the written constitution that the authorities interpret. in concrete ways. is invoked and implicated in different ways in different contexts. Crucially. mapped for military and strategic purposes and subjected to legal and technical definitions (Elden 2010). PhD Department of Sociology. Agnew 2005. according to need and context” (Connolly 2007: 33). sovereignty circulates uncertainly between the multitude. even if it is acknowledged that different actors and entities in different scales are operating in complex heterogeneous fields. This follows Connolly’s (2007) argument that: “in democratic constitutionalism. while sovereignty has a material component. there are other changes in the Arctic environment such as sea level rise and permafrost thaw that have profound social and political implications across different temporal and spatial scales. this would depend upon reworking the broader cultural ethos through which individuals are implicated in sovereignty. That is. Rather than maintain a conception of social and political action that remains irrevocably bound to concepts of sovereignty that maintain a fixed basis. and. supports a vision of politics that is attuned to how sovereignty. advancing understandings and practices of sovereignty that are more beneficial to themselves. http://www. has been configured as the necessary precondition of sovereignty (Larkins 2010. as a heterogeneous phenomenon. The relative weight of each element can be specified more closely. it might provide the basis for thinking sovereignty as a social issue. however. The concept of I am arguing for here does not treat sovereignty as a condition that pre‐exists the constitution of societies. to the population of southern Canada. This is an important point to note because constructivist critiques of modernist conceptions of sovereignty run the risk of inadvertently consigning Inuit groups to a mode of politics that is irrevocably local rather than seeing how existing structures and agencies could be used to exert Inuit self‐ determination. political authority and sovereignty have often been thought together in Western political theory. where operative. As Walker (2010) suggests. 7/29/14. It thus extends the ethic of rethinking 2009). for example through the principle of reconciliation. although never completely. I want to further this effort by considering what an ethical response is to the situation in which we find ourselves. In this way.

. This is an important point to note because constructivist critiques of modernist conceptions of sovereignty run the risk of inadvertently consigning Inuit groups to a mode of politics that is irrevocably local rather than seeing how existing structures and agencies could be used to exert Inuit self‐ determination. and as such is in the world in a concrete way. as a heterogeneous phenomenon.pdf) mc The concept of I am arguing for here does not treat sovereignty as a condition that pre‐exists the constitution of societies. supports a vision of politics that is attuned to how sovereignty. As Walker (2010) suggests. moving from configuring the world as sovereign nation‐states operating within a system of states to a reordering of inter‐ and intra state actors may not be so easy as sometimes This view does not foreclose the potential actions and networks of assemblages through which Inuit groups can and are. materially and discursively. “Sovereignty as a Social Issue: The Case of Inuit Nunangat” 2011. The issue here is thinking about the possibilities for politics that are both sustained and foreclosed by centering an account of politics in terms of the dualism of the presence‐ absence of the modern state system and individual nation states (Walker 2010: 198). is invoked and implicated in different ways in different contexts. PhD Department of Sociology. but rather as a relational phenomena.Alt – Relational We must make sovereignty a conceptual form of territorializing the land Vardy ‘11 (Mark. while sovereignty has a material component. by actors in the name of sovereignty (Agnew 2009: 104‐6). in concrete ways. Rethinking the territorial a priori as the spatial and temporal flux of sea ice.rha. http://www. advancing understandings and practices of sovereignty that are more beneficial to themselves. That is. it is brought into being and enacted. rather than the rigid fixity of land. 7/29/14. even if it is acknowledged that different actors and entities in different scales are operating in complex heterogeneous fields.

In the former articulation. to the population of southern Canada.rha. where operative. “Sovereignty as a Social Issue: The Case of Inuit Nunangat” 2011. it appeared that different understandings of sovereignty are being articulated by Inuit groups and the Government of Canada. in which case there is no necessary reason why Inuit and Canadian Government understandings of sovereignty should contradict one another: the beneficent sovereign could disperse social goods – education. The relative weight of each element can be specified more closely.Alt – Social Rethinking Rethinking sovereignty as a social phenomenon solves. this example also suggests that if subjects express their dissatisfaction with social conditions. for example through the principle of reconciliation. constitutionally sanctioned authorities. In the latter. This follows Connolly’s (2007) argument that: “in democratic constitutionalism. Vardy ‘11 (Mark. and. However. it also appears that there is nothing essential to the claim sovereignty should include social and environmental security that would prevent it from being enfolded within the argument that sovereignty is the exercise of control over a certain space. “Sovereignty as a Social Issue: The Case of Inuit Nunangat” 2011. this would depend upon reworking the broader cultural ethos through which individuals are implicated in sovereignty. It thus extends the ethic of rethinking sovereignty. thinking the flux of sea ice as a basis for social and political life might provide the basis to meet challenging conditions with care. in this case Canada. Sovereignty needs to be seen as a social connection – inability to do so can cause a structural social failure Vardy ‘11 (Mark. there are other changes in the Arctic environment such as sea level rise and permafrost thaw that have profound social and political implications across different temporal and spatial scales. The principle of reconciliation is . sovereignty circulates uncertainly between the multitude. it is more fundamentally a question of interpreting how the principle of reconciliation should be applied.pdf) mc Crucially. 7/29/14.rha. sovereignty is seen as a way to exert control over space. http://www. instead of leaving Inuit understandings of sovereignty as an issue that is exclusive to local Arctic populations and their lived experiences. The second example discussed above could be interpreted as a matter of deciding how various legal instruments and agreements contravene or do not contravene one another. However. At a minimum. a closer examination show that. however. this binary distinction between control over space and betterment of social conditions breaks down into multiple claims and practices. However.pdf) mc At the outset of this paper. although never completely. Although this article is focused on sea ice can be threatened. the written constitution that the authorities interpret. This could lend credence to the view that states only retain legitimate authority if they ensure their citizens are well cared for. However. PhD Department of Sociology. then the ability of states to act with authority over geographic territory. http://www. as Manley‐Casimir (2011: 38) argues. and social security in the face of changing environmental conditions – to subjects while protecting them from hostile outsiders. domestic policies regarding the language of instruction in public education have a direct consequence on the legitimacy of claims made in an international context. in practice. PhD Department of Sociology. it might provide the basis for thinking sovereignty as a social issue. and if this expression of dissatisfaction is recognized by other nation‐ states in the state system. sovereignty is seen as a way to ensure the well‐being of people and the environment upon which they depend. this example shows that sovereignty is not a static phenomenon but is socially Rather than maintain a conception of social and political action that remains irrevocably bound to concepts of sovereignty that maintain a fixed basis. according to need and context” (Connolly 2007: 33). then. the traditions it embodies. 7/29/14. In the first example discussed above.

and Carl Schmidt defined it. the (Gerhardt et al. These critiques. The assumption that Canada could come under military threat. while Lackenbauer (2008) might be correct in his analysis. several competing theories of sovereignty exist. Such a critique is launched. They argue instead for an Arctic politics that emphasizes the perceptions and understandings of Arctic inhabitants (Dittmer et al. Larkins 2010). are being demonstrated by the response to melting sea ice. Similarly. . Such territorial assumptions are made evident in claims made in the popular press by politicians. are taken up by Gerhardt et al. 2011). but also because it indicates the importance of paying attention to the ways social groups do ‐ or do not ‐ become deemed as legitimately codified actors in legal decisions and agreements. (2009) draw from Zygmunt Bauman’s (2000) metaphor of modernity as liquid to argue that we need to re‐imagine the Canadian Arctic archipelago as a flux of mobility. from a point of view that draws on constructivist insights. (2010) who argue that the limitations of making strict delineations between ocean and land. or a Weberian logic (the state as capable of deploying legitimate violence in the form of the military and coast guard in the Arctic).important to note here not only because it signals the possibility that the Canadian state can be made to consider different ethical bases for action over time. within the modern liberal nation‐state. they argue. Rather. indigenous organizations. Broadhead (2010) argues Inuit declarations of sovereignty can be used to rewrite the colonialist “mental maps” through which the Arctic is often thought. as seen in modernist conceptions of sovereignty. However. would the sovereignty thus manifested be of a different character or kind than the form sovereignty that would promote the social and environmental security highlighted by the Inuit Declaration of Sovereignty? Clearly. thereby increasing claims to self‐determination in an international context. Despite the various ways sovereignty has been conceptualized. as a place experienced by Inuit that I want to pursue as a way of refiguring the territorial a priori of sovereignty. 2010: 999). one of the issues at play in the second example involves historical agreements first signed between Britain and Russia before Canada itself became a nation‐state. territory has typically been configured as its necessary precondition (Agnew 2009. can lead to configuring the world differently than dividing it between territorially‐based sovereign changing Arctic can be figured as a “fluid space of crossings [in which] new systems of governance can be employed that push the limits of the state form and enable new possibilities for cooperation and inclusion within and across state borders” nation‐states and international oceans. how? A more specific way of asking this question is: should the Inuvialuit Final Agreement offer a route for the Inuvialuit to intervene in UNCLOS. This gives rise to another question: what theoretical assumptions need to be made of sovereignty not only to analyze the contemporary situation but also allow it to exist as it does in the first place? As has been well documented. has been cogently critiqued by (Lackenbauer 2008). and if so. After all. (2011) argue that both neo‐realist political discourses (which regard the Arctic as a site inevitably decided upon by nation‐states acting in their own self interest within an anarchic space) and liberal discourses (which regard the Arctic as a region best governed by international cooperation between nation‐states. which assert that the difficulties of responding to environmental changes in the Arctic through categories of political thought bequeathed by colonialism should not be ignored. Sovereignty is not automatically bestowed upon groups of people as soon as they meet a universal set of criteria. in their critique of Arctic geopolitics. however. that appear to invoke a Schmitian logic of sovereignty (the Canadian state declaring itself the decider of the law in the putative absence of juridical order that the shrinking sea ice unveils). For example. the assumptions that one holds of sovereignty will change how one views the possible answers to these issues. as the capacity of the executive to make the decision to suspend the constitution and to impose the law by acting outside of the juridical order (Agnew 2009. It is this experience of territory. together with Inuit declarations of sovereignty. Dittmer et al. This. however. sovereignty is a politically contestable and changeable phenomenon. who argues populist appeals to Arctic sovereignty made by politicians detract from an understanding of the actual dynamics through which Canada and other Arctic nations are responding to various issues. and established institutions and governance structures) are beholden to the modern and masculine conceits that the nation‐state and science are superior ways of knowing and ordering space. Walker 2010). rather than think of it as a rigid space that is an empty container waiting to be filled with the action of modernist politics imported from southern Canada. which informs both of these narratives. Vaninni et al. Similarly. he doesn’t treat sovereignty itself as a mode of political thought. including the Canadian prime minister. Max Weber defined sovereignty as the legitimate exercise of violence in a given geographic area. But does this mean that Inuit understandings of sovereignty are different from those that have prevailed through western modernity.

Chimni 11 (B.pdf&sa=U&ei=48RTU_b4N_SQ4gSey4HYDQ&ved=0CFcQFjAO&usg=AF QjCNFcq1AZ6zf0me1g3nXL9toL7zDvRA Accessed July 27th. Columbia University.69 The rapid development of international laws to combat international terrorism has further renewed faith in international law. There are conventions that seek to address the problems of organized crimes. Professor of Political Thought. but that also has important cosmopolitan elements and cosmopolitan legal principles (human rights norms) upon which the discourse of transnationalism and governance relies. Much will depend on how the new. PhD. the democratization of international relations and the updating of international law.html/_res/id%3Dsa_ File1/5052_Cohenforweb.carnegiecouncil. legal cosmopolitanism is potentially linked to a project radically distinct from empire and pure power politics—namely. and the Human Rights Council (HRC) also give the impression of a constantly developing international .70 The need to develop an appropriate response to the current problem of piracy further fortifies the spirit of international law.pdf) Indeed. Unlike the theorists of cosmopolitan law and justice without state sovereignty. Affirming international institutions is essential to democracy and challenging Empire Cohen ‘4 (Jean L. Imperialism. formal legal international human rights law has arguably become “the only global vision of social justice currently available. is framed. “Whose Sovereignty? Empire Versus International Law” 2004.AFF International law is only colonial when it’s exceptional – the plan reverses this and holds the US accountable. is the sine qua non for the emergence of a global “rule of law” and constitutes an important part of a counterproject to On this approach (my own). if inadequately. and International Law in the Twenty-First Century. Without a global rule of law that protects sovereignty as well as human rights. Mention may also be made of a rapidly evolving international criminal law with the International Criminal Court (ICC) at its heart. and the creation of a global rule of law that protects both the sovereign equality of states based on a revised conception of sovereignty and human rights. The work of bodies like the International Law Commission (ILC).” Revised version of keynote address from October 20-22 2011. is inherently suspect. especially and above all the alleged right to intervene militarily to enforce human rights. any talk of “cosmopolitan” right. and its relation to what went before. https://www. the paradox for which I want to argue is that today the rearticulation and democratization of sovereignty (internal and external). Cosmopolitan right can supplement—but not replace—sovereignty-based public international law. A dozen international treaties and a Counter Terrorism Committee (CTC) established by the U. as also combating corruption. United Nations Conference on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL).N. Date Accessed: 7/28/14. 2014)//bb The first project entails acknowledging the existence and value of a dualistic world order whose core remains the international society of states embedded within (suitably reformed) international institutions and international law.. including the trafficking and smuggling of people.uoregon. configured within a multilayered world order with effective international institutions and an updated international law. This requires the strengthening of supranational institutions. “Capitalism.”68 It has replaced all other “isms” and promises a just world order. International law key to solve global problems. Security Council hold out the promise of effectively fighting international terrorism through international cooperation. http://law.S Chimni is a Professor of International Law at the Jawaharlal Nehru University and a scholar in law.

It accounts for why TWAIL advocates engagement with it. In that way the “new spirit of international law” legitimizes the new imperial social. they may even enhance it. economic and political formation. Date Accessed: 7/28/14. Holding the US accountable for international law can challenge the worst forms of sovereignty. gives the language of international law further salience. be it a John Rawls or a Jurgen Habermas. https://www. http://law. green. It is not as if the renewal of the spirit of international law in the era of accelerated globalization is altogether without substance.pdf) A narrative of progress informs much mainstream international law scholarship helping reaffirm faith in international law.pdf&sa=U&ei=48RTU_b4N_SQ4gSey4HYDQ&ved=0CFcQFjAO&usg=AF QjCNFcq1AZ6zf0me1g3nXL9toL7zDvRA Accessed July 27th. The World Bank is a good example of how critique is coopted to strengthen the institution. International institutions also help renew faith in international law by co-opting critique in the same way as capitalism does.” Revised version of keynote address from October 20-22 2011. then it is perfectly conceivable that international law could penetrate the black box of the state without undermining its sovereign autonomy or integrity.carnegiecouncil. The second is the abandonment of the absolutist and decisionistic concept of sovereignty in favor of the relational model described above. Imperialism.. The fact that international law has come to be addressed by key thinkers of our times. and helps to regulate the self-regulation of the new nonstate transnational powers while fostering a global rule of law. This requires certain theoretical and practical steps. when they “delegate” jurisdiction to supranational entities. It stays away from forms of critique that invite the charge of legal nihilism. The world cannot do without international law in dealing with global problems that confront humanity in the twenty-first century. the latter is also not altogether without I believe that it is possible to strengthen international institutions and develop international law in a way that protects state sovereignty and human rights. Professor of Political Thought. Columbia University. The double life of international law thus parallels the double life of capitalism. when they establish frameworks for cooperation that create binding rules. I law inevitable – better to reform. The ability of international institutions to take critique and turn it into an instrument of its own legitimacy and advancement is a remarkable story. Yet international law also facilitates the imperial project. Imperialism.html/_res/id%3Dsa_ File1/5052_Cohenforweb. and International Law in the Twenty-First Century. supports popular sovereignty. they do not thereby lose or divide their sovereignty— It is only through the international legal process that problems such as the global ecological crises can be addressed.71 The role of the community of international lawyers is also crucial in renewing the spirit of international law. “Whose Sovereignty? Empire Versus International Law” 2004. But TWAIL needs to articulate and clarify the goals and values to which it is committed and ways in which these can be embodied in contemporary international law.S Chimni is a Professor of International Law at the Jawaharlal Nehru University and a scholar in that plug gaps in global law and facilitate international cooperation to address pressing problems. If these two ideas are linked together. PhD. Capitalism. Cohen ‘4 (Jean L. When states agree to certain restrictions. Chimni 11 (B. 2014)//bb There is an alternative to the project of empire and to the restricted set of choices Schmitt described. “Capitalism. The disassociation of the tight link between autonomy and exclusivity is the first theoretical step toward such a project. and a friend of the poor. In order to deflect the censure it has faced over the years the Bank has adopted cosmetic policy changes to represent itself today as being gender sensitive. and International Law 39 in the Twenty-First Century In sum. . the language of international law constantly offers hope by giving the impression that it is addressing lags and filling gaps.

. the articulation of sovereignty within a community of states that decides to consider one another as equals is the political precondition for feasible and effective international law. and allowed to develop into a shared culture of mutual respect of rights and accountability. The ascription of sovereignty to states by an international “community” by virtue of which they become members and equals is thus a way of limiting as well as empowering those states. a state powerful enough to ensure that others play by the rules to which it also subscribes. while law becomes mere window dressing. 2014)//bb Accordingly. In other words. Without this. Equality need not be construed as a substantive principle of homogeneity based on a friend/enemy conception of the political.pdf&sa=U&ei=48RTU_b4N_SQ4gSey4HYDQ&ved=0CFcQFjAO&usg=AF QjCNFcq1AZ6zf0me1g3nXL9toL7zDvRA Accessed July 27th. based on shared political norms. no single sovereign state should be able to prevail over all the others and impose its will as Columbia University. The “democratization” external sovereignty backed up by international law is thus the third step in the project. and institutionalized cooperation. involving mutual recognition. This does not exclude a guarantor of international right and international law— that is.html/_res/id%3Dsa_ File1/5052_Cohenforweb. In an institutionalized structure of power and counterpowers. It is enough that the general principles of the international order—sovereign equality and human rights—are accepted in principle (as they are by any state that has joined the UN).carnegiecouncil.Democratization of law solves. Cohen ‘4 (Jean L. of . an opponent becomes nothing more than an object of violent measures. Moreover. “Whose Sovereignty? Empire Versus International Law” 2004. balance. https://www. I see no reason why this conception cannot be generalized to all states construed as equal members of the international community along the lines of the UN Charter. PhD. Professor of Political Thought. international law has to be based on a set of political relationships between states to which sovereignty is ascribed within a common framework. formal equality has to be linked to some degree of material equality among the states.