International Law: Self-Defense

Latest in International Law: Self-Defense

International Law: Self-Defense

The Aborted Iran Strike: The Fine Line Between Necessity and Revenge

The president announced on June 21 that he had called off a potential U.S. military strike on Iran in response to Iran’s shootdown of a U.S. Navy remotely piloted vehicle (RPV). The strike, according to the president, could have incurred casualties of as high as 150 people—information that has sparked discussion over the proportionality of such a response under international law. Before jumping to this debate, however, there is another issue that needs to be considered first: the question of necessity.

International Law: Self-Defense

Document: Sen. Tim Kaine Presses the Pentagon on the Legal Definition of Collective Self-Defense

Sen. Tim Kaine has released a letter he sent to the Pentagon on Oct. 2 requesting further clarification on the Department of Defense's legal understanding of collective self-defense under international law. Specifically, Sen.

International Law

The Blurred Distinction Between Armed Conflict and Civil Unrest: Recent Events in Gaza

On April 6, for the third weekend in a row, Palestinians residents of Gaza confronted the Israeli Defense Forces near the fence separating the Gaza Strip from Israel. According to Palestinian sources, overall more than 30 Palestinians have died and hundreds have been wounded, since the beginning of the clashes.

International Law: Self-Defense

The Al-Kibar Strike: What a Difference 26 Years Make

Israel has experienced, quite literally, a blast from the past. For the first time, Israel officially acknowledged operation “Outside the Box”—the September 2007 strike that destroyed the Al-Kibar nuclear reactor, located in the Dier Al-Zour region in Syria. The construction of the reactor, in cooperation with North Korea, was approaching completion at the time of the strike.

International Law: Self-Defense

One Piece at a Time: The ‘Accumulation of Events’ Doctrine and the ‘Bloody Nose’ Debate on North Korea

Over the past few weeks, experts have engaged in a debate over the legality of pursuing a “bloody nose” strike on North Korea, an option reportedly being considered by the Trump administration (at least until recently). This debate has been propelled forward by an article published in Lawfare by Shane Reeves and Robert Lawless where they describe the “bloody nose” strike strategy as follows:

International Law

Prime Minister May’s Use-of-Force Claim: Clarifying the Law That Governs the U.K.’s Options

British Prime Minister Theresa May made the remarkable statement Monday that, absent a credible response from the Russian government, the United Kingdom will conclude that the use of a nerve agent against a former Russian informant, Sergei Skripal, was “an unlawful use of force by the Russian state against the United Kingdom.” News reports have proliferated, but some of them are inaccur

International Law: Self-Defense

U.K. Prime Minister's Speech on the Russian Poisoning of Sergei Skripal: Decoding the Signals

U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May said Monday that it was “highly likely” that the Russian government was behind the poisoning and attempted murder of former Russian military intelligence officer Sergei Skripal on British soil using a Russian-developed nerve agent from the “Novichok” neurotoxin family.

International Law: Self-Defense

Soldier Self-Defense and the Strikes in Syria

On Tuesday, U.S. forces shot down an armed Iranian drone in southern Syria, a few days after a similarly justified strike on a Syrian aircraft that dropped a bomb near a U.S. training outpost. Combined with the U.S. decision to ramp up support to Syrian Kurds seeking to retake Raqqa, these actions could be interpreted as initial steps on the road to war with Syria.

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