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Traditional and Modern Approaches to Customary International Law: A Reconciliation

  • Anthea Elizabeth Roberts

Extract

The demise of custom as a source of international law has been widely forecasted. This is because both the nature and the relative importance of custom’s constituent elements are contentious. At the same time, custom has become an increasingly significant source of law in important areas such as human rights obligations. Codification conventions, academic commentary, and the case law of the International Court of Justice (the Court) have also contributed to a contemporary resurrection of custom. These developments have resulted in two apparently opposing approaches, which I term “traditional custom” and “modern custom.” The renaissance of custom requires the articulation of a coherent theory that can accommodate its classic foundations and contemporary developments. This article seeks to provide an enriched theoretical account of custom that incorporates both the traditional and the modern approaches rather than advocating one approach over the other.

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1 E.g., Dunbar, N. C. H., The Myth of Customary International Law, 1983 Austl. Y. B. Int’l L. 1 ; Patrick Kelly, J., The Twilight of Customary International Law, 40 Va. J. Int’l L. 449 (2000).

2 Theodor, Meron, Human Rights and Humanitarian Norms as Customary Law (1989).

3 Eduardo, Jiménez de Aréchaga, Custom, in Change and Stability in International Law–Making 1, 23 (Antonio, Cassese & Joseph, H. H. Weiler eds., 1988) [hereinafter Change and Stability]; Michael Reisman, W., The Cult of Custom in the Late 20th Century, 17 Cal. W. Int’l L.J. 133 (1987).

4 International Court of Justice Statute Art. 38(1) (b) [hereinafter ICJ Statute].

5 North Sea Continental Shelf (FRG/Den.; FRG/Neth.), 1969 ICJ Rep. 3, 44 (Feb. 20).

6 Restatement (Third) of the Foreign Relations Law of the United States §102(2) (1987) [hereinafter Restatement] ; Ian, Brownlie, Principles of Public International Law 411 (5th ed. 1998); Michael, Byers, Custom, Power, and the Power of Rules 130 (1999); Anthony, A. D’Amato, The Concept of Custom in International Law 49 (1971) (citing François, Gény, Méthode d’interprétation et sources en droit privé Positif §110 (1899)).

7 D’Amato, supra note 6, at 89–90, 160. This distinction has been criticized by many commentators, who include certain statements as forms of state practice. Restatement, supra note 6, §102; Brownlie, supra note 6, at 5–6; Michael, Akehurst, Custom as a Source of International Law, 1974–75 Brit.Y. B. Int’l L. 1, 2, 35 . The distinction is also impliedly inconsistent with some case law of the Court. Fisheries Jurisdiction (UK v. Ice.), Merits, 1974 ICJ Rep. 3, 47, 56–58, 81–88, 119–20, 135, 161 (July 25); North Sea Continental Shelf, 1969 ICJ Rep. at 4, 32–33, 47, 53.

8 D’Amato, supra note 6, at 74–75.

9 Id. at 35–39; Akehurst, supra note 7, at 36–37.

10 Cf. D’Amato, supra note 6, at 89 (arguing that treaties are actions). But see Akehurst, supra note 7, at 3, 43 (criticizing D’Amato for inconsistency).

11 E.g., Ted, Stein, Remarks [on customs and treaties], in Change and Stability, supra note 3, at 12, 13 .

12 North Sea Continental Shelf, 1969 ICJ Rep. at 44; Restatement, supra note 6, §102(2).

13 North Sea Continental Shelf, 1969 ICJ Rep. at 44; Right of Passage over Indian Territory (Port. v. India), Merits, 1960 ICJ Rep. 6, 42–43 (Apr. 12); Asylum (Colom./Peru), 1950 ICJ Rep. 266, 276–77 (Nov. 20); S.S. “Lotus” (Fr. v. Turk.), 1927 PCIJ (ser. A) No. 10, at 28 (Sept. 7).

14 The Paquete Habana, 175 U.S. 677, 686 (1900); James, Brierly, The Law of Nations 62 (6th ed. 1963).

15 Delimitation of the Maritime Boundary in the Gulf of Maine Area (Can. v. U.S.), 1984 ICJ Rep. 246, 299 (Oct. 12); Oscar, Schachter, International Law in Theory and Practice 3536 (1991); Georg, Schwarzenberger, The Inductive Approach to International Law 33 (1965); Georg, Schwarzenberger, The Inductive Approach to International Law, 60 Harv. L. Rev. 539, 56670 (1947).

16 S.S. “Lotus, ” 1927 PCIJ (ser. A) No. 10, at 18, 29; see also Nottebohm (Liech. v. Guat), Second Phase, 1955 ICJ Rep. 4, 22 (Apr. 6); Wimbledon, S.S., 1923 PCIJ (ser. A) No. 1, at 25 (Aug. 17).

17 Hiram, Chodosh, Neither Treaty nor Custom: The Emergence of Declarative International Law, 26 Tex. Int’l. L. J. 87, 102n.70 (1991).

18 Bruno, Simma & Philip, Alston, The Sources of Human Rights Law: Custom, Jus Cogens, and General Principles, 1988–89 Austl. Y. B. Int’l L. 82 .

19 Bin, Cheng, United Nations Resolutions on Outer Space: ‘Instant’ International Customary Law? 5 Indian J. Int’l L. 23 (1965), reprinted in International Law: Teaching and Practice 237 (Bin, Cheng ed., 1982).

20 North Sea Continental Shelf, 1969 ICJ Rep. at 44; Eduardo, Jiménez de Aréchaga, Remarks [on general principles and General Assembly resolutions], in Change and Stability, supra note 3, at 48 .

21 Akehurst, supra note 7, at 6–7; Jonathan, I. Charney, Universal International Law, 87 AJIL 529, 54445 (1993).

22 Military and Paramilitary Activities in and Against Nicaragua (Nicar. v. U.S.), Merits, 1986 ICJ Rep. 14 (June 27) [hereinafter Nicaragua]; see also Western Sahara, Advisory Opinion, 1975 ICJ Rep. 12, 30–37 (Oct. 16); Legal Consequences for States of the Continued Presence of South Africa in Namibia (South West Africa) Notwithstanding Security Council Resolution 276 (1970), Advisory Opinion, 1971 ICJ Rep. 16, 31–32 (June 21) [hereinafter Namibia Advisory Opinion].

23 E.g., Declaration on Principles of International Law Concerning Friendly Relations and Co–operation Among States in Accordance with the Charter of the United Nations, GA Res. 2625, UN GAOR, 25th Sess., Supp. No. 28, at 121, UN Doc. A/8028 (1970); Conference on Security and Co–operation in Europe, Final Act, Aug. 1, 1975, 73 Dep’t St. Bull. 323 (1975), reprinted in 14 ILM 1292 (1975) [hereinafter Helsinki Accord].

24 Nicaragua, 1986 ICJ Rep. at 98, para. 186.

25 Georges Abi-Saab, Remarks [on custom and treaties], in Change and Stability, supra note 3, at 9; Louis, Henkin, Human Rights and State “Sovereignty,” 25 GA. J. Int’l L. 37 (1995/96); Simma & Alston, supra note 18, at 90; Ted, Stein, The Approach of a Different Drummer: The Principle of the Persistent Objector in International Law, 26 Harv. Int’l L. J. 457, 457 (1985).

26 Consider, for example, the strong and conflicting responses to the Nicaragua case. Symposium, Appraisals of the ICJ’s Decision: Nicaragua v. United States (Merits), 81 AJIL 77 (1987).

27 David, Fidler, Challenging the Classical Concept of Custom, 1996 Ger. Y.B. Int’l L. 198, 21631 .

28 Charney, supra note 21, at 543.

29 Meron, supra note 2; Lori, Bruun, Beyond the 1948 Convention—Emerging Principles of Genocide in Customary International Law, 17 Md. J. Int’l L. & Trade 193, 21617 (1993); Richard, B. Lillich, The Growing Importance of Customary International Human Rights Law, 25 Ga. J. Int’L & Comp. L. 1, 8 (1995/96).

30 Reisman, supra note 3, at 135.

31 Arthur, A. Weisburd, Customary International Law: The Problem of Treaties, 21 Vand. J. Transnat’l L.. 1, (1988) [hereinafter Weisburd, Customary IL]. For further discussion, see Anthony, A. D’Amato, Custom and Treaty: A Response to Professor Arthur A. Weisburd, 21 Vand. J. Transnat’l L. 459 (1988) [hereinafter D’Amato, Response]; Arthur, A. Weisburd, A Reply to Professor Anthony A. D’Amato, id. at 473 ; Anthony, A. D’Amato, A Brief Rejoinder, id. at 489 .

32 Kelly, supra note 1, at 451.

33 Anthony, A. D’Amato, Trashing Customary International Law, 81 AJIL 101 (1987).

34 Robert, Y. Jennings, The Identification of International Law, in International Law, supra note 19, at 3, 5 ; see also North Sea Continental Shelf (FRG/Den.; FRG/Neth.), 1969 ICJ Rep. 3, 224 (Feb. 20) (Sørensen, J. ad hoc, dissenting); Simma & Alston, supra note 18, at 83.

35 Curtis, A. Bradley & Jack, L. Goldsmith, Customary International Law as Federal Common Law: A Critique of the Modern Position, 110 Harv. L. Rev. 815,. 838, (1997); Kelly, supra note 1, at 454 n.20, 484.

36 Stein, supra note 11, at 12.

37 Bin Cheng, in International Law, supra note 19, at 249.

38 Hilary, C. M. Charlesworth, Customary International Law and the Nicaragua Case, 1984–87 Austl. Y. B. Int’l L. 1 .

39 Simma & Alston, supra note 18, at 88, 96.

40 Id. at 102–06; see also ICJ Statute Art. 38(1) (c).

41 Daniel, Bodansky, Customary (and Not So Customary) International Environmental Law, 3 Ind. J. Global Legal Stud. 105, 11619 (1995); Charney, supra note 21, at 543, 546–47; Chodosh, supra note 17.

42 Frederic, L. Kirgis Jr., Custom on a Sliding Scale, 81 AJIL 146 (1987); John, Tasioulas, In Defence of Relative Normativity: Communitarian Values and the Nicaragua Case, 16 Oxford J. Legal Stud. 85 (1996).

43 Kirgis, supra note 42, at 149.

44 Simma & Alston, supra note 18, at 83.

45 For an explanation of the phrases “apology for power” and “utopian and unachievable, ” see Martti Koskenniemi, From Apology to Utopia: The Structure of International Legal Argument 2 (1989).

46 Ronald, Dworkin, Law’s Empire (1986); John, Rawls, A Theory of Justice 20 (1972).

47 Hart, H. L. A., The Concept of Law 183 (1961); Hare, R. M., Moral Thinking, ch. 4 (1981); Hare, R.M., The Language of Morals (1952).

48 The same issue arises with codification of international law. Charles de, Visscher, Theory and Reality in Public International Law 39 (Corbett, P. E. trans., rev. ed. 1968); Hersch, Lauterpacht, Codification and Development of International Law, 49 AJIL 16 (1955); Oscar, Schachter, Recent Trends in International Law Making, 1988–89 Austl. Y.B. Int’l L. 1, 23 ; Julius, Stone, The Vocation of the International Law Commission, 57 Colum. L. Rev. 16, 1819 (1957).

49 Ulrich, Fastenrath, Relative Normativity in International Law, 4 Eur. J. Int’l L. 305, 31619 (1993).

50 Bin, Cheng, Custom: The Future of General State Practice in a Divided World, in The Structure and Process of International Law: Essays in Legal Philosophy, Doctrine, and Theory 513, 539 (Ronald, St. J. Macdonald & Douglas, M. Johnston eds., 1983).

51 Bodansky, supra note 41, at 116–19.

52 Jerome, Frank, Law andthe Modern Mind, in Lloyd’s Introduction to Jurisprudence 679 (Michael, Freeman ed., 6th ed. 1994); Oliver, Wendell Holmes, The Path of Law, 10 Harv. L. Rev. 457, 457 (1896–97); Karl, Llewellyn, Some Realism About Realism, 44 Harv. L. Rev. 1222 (1931).

53 Simma & Alston, supra note 18, at 89.

54 Bin Cheng, supra note 50, at 539; Charlesworth, supra note 38, at 27.

55 Thomas, R. Tyler, Why People Obey the Law 17073 (1990); Kelly, supra note 1, at 517–18, 530–31; Stephen, Machura, Introduction: Procedural Justice, Law and Policy, 19 Mich. J. Int’l L. 345, 35354 (1998).

56 Tyler, supra note 55, at 163, 170–73, 175–78; Thomas, M. Franck, Legitimacy in the International System, 82 AJIL 705,. 706, (1988); Kelly, supra note 1, at 531; Machura, supra note 55, at 353–54.

57 These values are intersubjective, i.e., values commonly held by a group of subjects, in this case states. Jan, Narveson, Inter–subjective , The Oxford Companion to Philosophy 414 (Ted, Honderiched., 1995) [hereinafter Oxford Companion] .

58 See also ascending and descending methods of justification. Walter, Ullmann, Law and Politics in the Middle Ages 3031 (1975).

59 Koskenniemi, supra note 45, at 41.

60 North Sea Continental Shelf (FRG/Den.; FRG/Neth.), 1969 ICJ Rep. 3 (Feb. 20); Restatement, supra note 6, §102(2).

61 North Sea Continental Shelf, 1969 ICJ Rep. at 3, 38.

62 Mark, Villiger, Customary International Law and Treaties: A Manual on the Theory and Practice of the Interrelation of Sources 102 (2d ed. 1997); Baxter, R. R., Multilateral Treaties as Evidence of Customary International Law, 1965–66 Brit. Y.B. Int’l L. 275, 286 .

63 ICJ Statute Art. 15.

64 Schachter, supra note 48, at 2.

65 Akehurst, supra note 7, at 45–47.

66 For example, the range of terms in the Manila Declaration on the Peaceful Settlement of International Disputes, GA Res. 37/10 (Nov. 14, 1982). See also Luigi Condorelli, Remarks [on lex lata and lex ferenda], in Change and Stability, supra note 3, at 79.

67 E.g., Nicaragua, 1986 ICJ Rep. at 107, paras. 203–04 (citing Declaration on Principles of International Law Concerning Friendly Relations and Co-operation Among States in Accordance with the Charter of the United Nations, supra note 23; Helsinki Accord, supra note 23).

68 Jiménez de Aréchaga, supra note 20; Alain, Pellet, The Normative Dilemma: Will and Consent in International Law– Making, 1988–89 Austl. Y.B. Int’l L. 22, 35 .

69 Meron, supra note 2, at 43–44.

70 Schachter, supra note 15, at 335.

71 Meron, supra note 2, at 42.

72 Hart, supra note 47, at 225.

73 Hans, Kelsen, Principles of International Law 30708, 418 (1952).

74 Kelly, supra note 1, at 479–80.

75 Simma & Alston, supra note 18, at 89.

76 By morality, I am again referring to commonly held subjective values about actions that are right and wrong, and have been recognized by a representative majority of states in treaties and declarations. While these values are often called “normative, ” I call them “moral” so as not to confuse the distinction between descriptive/normative justifications and facilitative/moral content. I use the term “normative” to describe a statement about what the practice should be, rather than to reflect the inherent moral content of a rule.

77 Bruun, supra note 29, at 216–17; Lillich, supra note 29, at 8.

78 E.g., Nicaragua, 1986 ICJ Rep. 14.

79 Bodansky, supra note 41.

80 Henkin, supra note 25, at 34–35.

81 Schachter, supra note 15, at 11; Fernando, R. Tesón, Humanitarian Intervention: An Inquiry into Law and Morality 14 (1988); Theodor, Meron, On a Hierarchy of International Human Rights, 80 AJIL 1, 1920 (1986); Oscar, Schachter, Entangled Treaty and Custom, in International Law at a Time of Perplexity 717, 73334 (Yoram, Dinsteined., 1989).

82 Restatement, supra note 6, §702.

83 Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties, opened for signature May 23, 1969, Art. 53, 1155 UNTS 331; see also Restatement, supra note 6, §102 cmt. k; David, Harris, Cases and Materials on International Law 42, 835 (5th ed. 1998); Thirlway, H. W. A., International Customary Law and Codification 110 (1972); Charlesworth, supra note 38, at 4; cf. Antonio, Cassese, International Law in a Divided World 179 (1989).

84 Schachter, supra note 15, at 11; see also Schachter, supra note 81, at 733–34.

85 Nicaragua, 1986 ICJ Rep. at 98, para. 186.

86 Dworkin, supra note 46, at 177.

87 Restatement, supra note 6, §102 cmt. k; Thirlway, supra note 83, at 110; Charlesworth, supra note 38, at 4; cf. Cassese, supra note 83, at 179.

88 Henkin, supra note 25, at 37; Fred, L. Morrison, Legal Issues in the Nicaragua Opinion , 81 AJIL 160,. 162, (1987).

89 Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties, supra note 83, Art. 26; Schachter, supra note 81, at 727–28.

90 According to the persistent objector rule, states that have persistently objected during the emergence of a custom are not bound by it. Gerald, Fitzmaurice, The General Principles of International Law Considered from the Standpoint of the. Rules of Law, 92 Recueil des Cours 1, 4950 (1957 II); Stein, supra note 25, at 457. However, the International Court of Justice has endorsed the persistent objector rule only twice, and arguably both times in obiter dicta. Fisheries case (UK v. Nor.), 1951 ICJ Rep.116, 131 (Dec. 18); Asylum (Colom./Peru), 1950 ICJ Rep. 266, 277–78 (Nov. 20); see also Nuclear Tests (Austl. v. Fr.), 1974 ICJ Rep. 253, 286–93 (Dec. 20) (Gross, J., sep. op.). Further, a state cannot be a persistent objector to jus cogens rules and theorists have generally concluded that the practical application of the rule is limited. Byers, supra note 6, at 181; D’Amato, supra note 6, at 187–99, 233–63; Jonathan, I. Charney, The Persistent Objector Rule and the Development of Customary International Law, 1986 Brit. Y. B. Int’l L. 11, 1116 .

91 It may also discourage states from voting for aspirational instruments. Thomas, M. Franck, Some Observations on the ICJ’s Procedural and Substantive Innovations, 81 AJIL 116,. 119, (1987).

92 Nicaragua, 1986 ICJ Rep. at 113–14, paras. 217–18; Meron, supra note 2, at 6–7, 27; Pierre, Imbert, Reservations and Human Rights Conventions, 6 Hum. Rts. Rev. 28 (1981); Schachter, supranote 81, at 727–28.

93 Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties, supra note 83, Art. 43.

94 Prosper, Weil, Towards Relative Normativity in International Law? 77 AJIL 413, 438 (1983).

95 Cassese, supra note 83, at31, 110, 398; Charlesworth, supranote 38, at 1–3; Tasioulas, supra note 42, at 116–17.

96 Kirgis, supra note 42, at 148.

97 Reservations to the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, Advisory Opinion, 1951 ICJ Rep. 15, 23 (May 28).

98 Corfu Channel case (UKv. Alb.), Merits, 1949 ICJ Rep. 4, 22 (Apr. 9).

99 Koskenniemi, supra note 45, at 2.

100 Byers, supra note 6, at 49.

101 Koskenniemi, supra note 45, at 42.

102 David, Kennedy, When Renewal Repeats: Thinking Against the Box, 32 N.Y.U. J. Int’l L. & Pol. 335, 355 (2000).

103 Dworkin, supra note 46, at 271.

104 Kennedy, supra note 102, at 407.

105 Byers, supra note 6, at 156–62; D’Amato, supra note 6, at 56–66.

106 Wolfgang, Friedmann, The Changing Structure of International Law 122 (1964).

107 Fidler, supra note 27, at 216.

108 Charney, supra note 21, at 537; Fidler, supra note 27, at 203, 217.

109 Kelly, supra note 1, at 519.

110 Charney, supra note 21, at 537; Chodosh, supranote 17, at 102; Oscar, Schachter, New Custom:Power Opinio Juris and Contrary Practice, in Theory of International Law at the Threshold of the 21 St Century: Essays in Honour of Krzysztof Skubiszewski 531, 536 (Jerzy, Makarczyk ed., 1996); Weisburd, supranote 31, at 6.

111 Wimbledon, S.S., 1923 PCIJ (ser. A) No. 1, at 25 (Aug. 17); see also Chodosh, supra note 17, at 102 n.69; Kelly, supra note 1, at 470 n.93.

112 E.g., D’Amato, supra note 6, at 74–87; Michael Reisman, W., International Incidents: Introduction to a New Genre in the Study of International Law, 10 Yale J. Int’l L. 1, 14 (1984).

113 Byers, supra note 6, at 37.

114 D’Amato, supra note 6, at 96–97.

115 Karol, Wolfke, Custom in Present International Law 135 (2d ed. 1993); Akehurst, supra note 7, at 37; MacGibbon, I. C., The Scope of Acquiescence in International Law, 1954 Brit. Y.B. Int’l L. 143, 14546 [hereinafter MacGibbon, Acquiescence I]; MacGibbon, I. C., Customary International Law and Acquiescence, 1957 Brit. Y.B. Int’l L. 115, 138 [hereinafter MacGibbon, Acquiescence II].

116 Kelly, supra note 1, at 522.

117 Id a t 519.

118 Restatement, supra note 6, §102(2); Louis, Henkin, How Nations Behave 121 (2d ed. 1979); Fidler, supra note 27, at 213–14, 218; B. Graefrath, Remarks [on custom and treaties], in Change And Stability, supra note 3, at 19, 19–20; Schachter, supra note 81, at 721.

119 D’Amato, supra note 6, at 191–93; Akehurst, supra note 7, at 27.

120 Tasioulas, supra note 42, at 123.

121 Mohammed, Bedjaoui, Toward a New International Economic Order 5152 (1979); De Visscher, supra note 48, at 149; Schachter, supra note 15, at 6.

122 Kelly, supra note 1, at 469.

123 S.S. “Lotus” (Fr. v.Turk.), 1927 PCIJ (ser. A) No. 10, at 29 (Sept. 7); see also Chodosh, supra note 17, at 102 n.70; Weisburd, Customary IL, supra note 31, at 6.

124 E.g., Antonio, Cassese, Ex iniuria ius oritur: Are We Moving Towards International Legitimation of Forcible Humanitarian Countermeasures in the World Community? 10 Eur. J. Int’l L. 23 (1999); Jonathan, I. Charney, Anticipatory Humanitarian Intervention in Kosovo, 93 AJIL 834, 83537 (1999).

125 Bedjaoui, supra note 121, at 136.

126 Koskenniemi, supra note 45, at 355.

127 Bradley & Goldsmith, supra note 35, at 840 n.167.

128 Charney, supra note 21, at 543; cf. Right of Passage over Indian Territory (Port. v. India), Merits, 1960 ICJ Rep. 6, 39 (Apr. 12) (on regional customs).

129 Right of Passage over Indian Territory, 1960 ICJ Rep. at 37.

130 Charlesworth, supra note 38, at 27.

131 Franck, supra note 91, at 119; MacGibbon, I. C., Means for the Identification of International Law, in International Law, supra note 19, at 10, 13 ; Pellet, supra note 68, at 31.

132 Dean, Rusk, A Comment on Filartiga v. Pena-Irala, 11 Ga. J. Int’l & Comp. L. 311 (1981); Phillip, R. Trimble, A Revisionist View of Customary International Law, 33 UCLA L. Rev. 655, 680 n.60 (1986).

133 Resolution Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman, or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, GA Res. 46, UN GAOR, 39th Sess., Supp. No. 51, at 197, UN Doc. A/39/51 (1984).

134 Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman, or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, Dec. 10, 1984, 1465 UNTS 85, 23 ILM 1027 (1984), as modified 24 ILM 535 (1985).

135 For example, the United States. U.S. Reservations, Declarations, and Understandings, Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman, or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, 136 Cong. Rec. S17, 486 (daily ed. Oct. 27, 1990).

136 Simma & Alston, supra note 18, at 94.

137 Rhoda, E. Howard, Dignity, Community, and Human Rights, in Human Rights in a Cross-Cultural Perspective 81 (Abdullahi, Ahmed An-Na’im ed., 1992); see also Kelly, supra note 1, at 466, 491; cf. Lawrence, Friedman, Borders: On the Emerging Sociology of Transnational Law, 32 Stan. J. Int’l L. 65, 8385 (1996).

138 Restatement, supra note 6, §702.

139 Simma & Alston, supra note 18, at 94–95.

140 Bedjaoui, supra note 121, at 141.

141 See pt. I supra; see also Charney, supra note 110, at 547; cf. D’Amato, supra note 6, at 104, 110, 164.

142 Kelly, supra note 1, at 520–21.

143 Bodansky, supra note 41, at 110–11; James, S. Watson, Legal Theory, Efficacy and Validity in the Development of Human Rights Norms in International Law, U. Ill. L.F. 609, 610–13,. 641, (1979).

144 Restatement, supra note 6, §702; Fidler, supra note 27, at 227 n. 129; Rosalyn, Higgins, Problems and Process: International Law and How We Use It, in International Human Rights in Context 232 (Henry, J. Steiner & Philip, Alston eds., 2d ed. 2000).

145 Arthur, A. Weisburd, The Emptiness of the Concept of Jus Cogens, as Illustrated by the War in Bosnia–Herzegovina, 17 Mich. J. Int’l L. 49 (1995).

146 Hart, supra note 47, at 86–91.

147 Report of the Regional Meeting for Africa of the World Conference on Human Rights, UN Doc. A/ CONF. 157/AFRM/14, at 1 (1992); Report of the Regional Meeting for Asia of the World Conference on Human Rights, UN Doc. A/CONF.157/ASRM/8, at 3 (1993).

148 Weil, supra note 94, at 415.

149 Jonathan, I. Charney, Customary International Law in the Nicaragua Case Judgment on the Merits, 1988 Hague Y.B. Int’l L. 16, 24 .

150 Bedjaoui, supra note 121, at 141–44.

151 Fidler, supra note 27, at 220–22, 224–25.

152 Byers, supra note 6, at 49.

153 Koskenniemi, supra note 45, at 42.

154 Kelly, supra note 1, at 451.

155 Dworkin, supra note 46, at 66.

156 Id.

157 Id. at 65–66.

158 Id. at 255.

159 Id. at 256.

160 Id.

161 Ronald, Dworkin, Law and Morals, Natural Law, and Legal Positivism, in Oxford Companion, supra note 57, at 473, 47374 , 606, 606–07, and 476, 476–77, respectively; Ronald, Dworkin, Law as Interpretation, 60 Tex. L. Rev. 527, 528 (1982) [hereinafter Dworkin, Interpretation].

162 Dworkin, Interpretation, supra note 161, at 528.

163 Ronald, Dworkin, Taking Rights Seriously 34041 (3d ed. 1981); Ronald, Dworkin, Is There Really No Right Answer in Hard Cases ? in A Matter of Principle 143 (1985).

164 Dworkin, supra note 46, at 255–57.

165 Id. at 66.

166 John, Finnis, On Reason and Authority in Law’s Empire, 6 Law & Phil. 357, 37374 (1987).

167 Dworkin, supra note 46, at 246–47.

168 Id. at 257.

169 Id. at 228–32.

170 Finnis, supra note 166, at 374.

171 Bodansky, supra note 41.

172 ICJ Statute Art. 38(1) (b);North Sea Continental Shelf (FRG/Den.;FRG/Neth.), 1969ICJ Rep. 3, 44 (Feb. 20).

173 See Nicaragua, 1986 ICJ Rep. 14; Namibia Advisory Opinion, 1971 ICJ Rep. 16; Corfu Channel case (UK v. Alb.), Merits, 1949 ICJ Rep. 4, 34 (Apr. 9).

174 Kirgis, supra note 42, at 149.

175 Id.

176 Simma & Alston, supra note 18, at 83.

177 Tasioulas, supra note 42, at 113.

178 E.g., North Sea Continental Shelf, 1969 ICJ Rep. 3.

179 Koskenniemi, supra note 45, at 2.

180 Kirgis, supra note 42, at 149.

181 Wimbledon, S.S., 1923 PCIJ (ser. A) No. 1, at 25 (Aug. 17); see also North Sea Continental Shelf, 1969 ICJ Rep. at 231 (Lachs, J., dissenting); id. at 241, 246–47 (Sørensen, J. ad hoc, dissenting); Nottebohrn case (Liech.v. Guat.), Second Phase, 1955 ICJ Rep. 4, 22 (Apr. 6).

182 Dworkin, supra note 46, at 246–47, 255–57.

183 Id.

184 John, King Gamble & Charlotte, Ku, New Actors and New Technologies: Center Stage for NGOs? 31 Law & Pol’y Int’l Bus. 221, 24344 (2000).

185 Karsten, Nowrot, Legal Consequences of Globalization: The Status of Non–Governmental Organizations Under International Law, 6 Ind. J. Global Legal. Stud. 579, 595 (1999); Peter, J. Spiro, New Global Potentates: Nongovernmental Organizations and the “Unregulated” Marketplace, 18 Cardozo L. Rev. 957, 95960 (1996).

186 ICJ Statute Art. 38(1) (d).

187 See examples in Brownlie, supra note 6, at 19–25.

188 ICJ Statute Art. 59; see also Brownlie, supra note 6, at 20–21.

189 For example, torture was held to be against customary international law but remains common throughout the world. Filartiga v. Pena–Irala, 630 F.2d 876 (1980).

190 For example, consumer boycotts were called on French products over French nuclear testing. Protests Hurt Wine’s Sales, N.Y. Times, Dec. 25, 1995, §1, at 58. Similarly, many U.S. corporations terminated their presence in South Africa in protest over apartheid well before they were required to do so by federal laws. Kevin, P. Lewis, Dealing with South Africa: The Constitutionality of State and Local Divestment Legislation, 61 Tul. L. rev.. 469, (1987).

191 For example, the International Committee of the Red Cross played a pivotal role in the initiation and negotiation of the Ottawa convention banning land mines. Kenneth, Anderson, The Ottawa Convention Banning Landmines, the Role of International Non–Governmental Organizations and the Idea of International Civil Society, 11 Eur. J. Int’l L. 91 (2000).

192 Nowrot, supra note 185, at 596–98.

193 Isabelle, R. Gunning, Modernizing Customary International Law: The Challenge of Human Rights, 31 Va. J. Int’l L. 211, 22734 (1991).

194 Spiro, supra note 185, at 962–67.

195 Dworkin, supra note 46, at 285.

196 Id.

197 Geny, in D’Amato, supra note 6, at 49.

198 Dworkin, supra note 46, at 246–47, 255–57.

199 S.S. “Lotus” (Fr. v. Turk.), 1927 PCIJ (ser. A) No. 10, at 18 (Sept. 7). The Court affirmed this principle in Legality of the Threat or Use of Nuclear Weapons, Advisory Opinion, 1996 ICJ Rep. 226, 238, para. 20 (July 8). These decisions establish a residual negative principle, which provides that in the case of a non liquet (an absence of law), whatever is not prohibited in international law is permitted. Daniel, Bodansky, Non Liquet and the Incompleteness of International Law, in International Law, The International Court of Justice and Nuclear Weapons 153 (Laurence, Boisson de Chazournes & Philippe, Sands eds., 1999); Ole, Spiermann, Lotus and the Double Structure of International Legal Argument, in id. at 131 ; Julius, Stone, Non Liquet and the Function of Law in the International Community, 1959 Brit. Y. B. Int’l L. 124, 135 .

200 Martti, Koskenniemi, The Pull of the Mainstream, 88 Mich. L. Rev. 1946, 1952 (1990); Fastenrath, supra note 49, at 316–17.

201 D’Amato, supra note 6, at 97–98.

202 Schachter, supra note 15, at 335.

203 See “The Fluid Nature of Custom, ” infra p. 784.

204 Richard, A. Falk, Kosovo, World Order, and the Future of International Law, 93 AJIL 847,. 853, (1999).

205 Charney, supra note 21, at 543; Henkin, supra note 25, at 36.

206 Louis, Henkin, International Law: Politics and Values 18081 (1995); Bradley & Goldsmith, supra note 35, at 840–41; Henkin, supra note 25, at 38; Simma & Alston, supra note 18, at 99.

207 E.g., Filartiga v. Pena-Irala, 630 F.2d 876 (1980); The Paquete Habana, 175 U.S. 677 (1900); see also Chibundu, M. O., Making Customary International Law Through Municipal Adjudication: A Structural Inquiry, 39 Va. J. Int’l L. 1069 (1999).

208 Chodosh, supra note 17, at 121; Simma & Alston, supra note 18, at 90–100; Watson, supra note 143, at 609–12; Arthur, A. Weisburd, The Effect of Treaties and Other Formal International Acts on the Customary Law of Human Rights, 25 Ga. J. Int’l & Comp. L. 99, 129 (1995/96); Weisburd, Customary IL, supra note 31, at 41.

208 Schachter, supra note 48, at 10.

210 Meron, supra note 2, at 61.

211 S.S. “Lotus” (Fr. v. Turk.), 1927 PCIJ (ser. A) No. 10, at 28 (Sept. 7). The Court affirmed this principle in North Sea Continental Shelf (FRG/Den.; FRG/Neth.), 1969 ICJ Rep. 3, 44 (Feb. 20); see also Simma 8c Alston, supra note 18, at 99–100, 104.

212 D’Amato, supra note 6, at 62, 63; Akehurst, supra note 7, at 43–47.

213 Akehurst, supra note 7, at 37; MacGibbon, Acquiescence I, supra note 115, at 145–46; MacGibbon, Acquiescence II, supra note 115, at 138.

214 Barcelona Traction, Light & Power Co. (Belg. v. Spain), Second Phase, 1970 ICJ Rep. 3, 31 (Feb. 5).

215 Wolfke, supra note 115, at 135; Weisburd, supra note 208, at 107–09; see also Akehurst, supra note 7, at 39.

216 Henkin, supra note 25, at 41.

217 Dworkin, supra note 46, at 192–93; Kelly, supra note 1, at 522.

218 D’Amato, supra note 6, at 68–70; Charney, supra note 21, at 536–38.

219 Kevin, T. Jackson, Global Rights and Regional Jurisprudence, 12 Law & Phil. 157, 15859 (1993).

220 Dworkin, supra note 46, at 256.

221 Christine, Chinkin, The Challenge of Soft Law: Development and Change in International Law, 38 Int’l. & Comp. L.Q. 850, 861, 865 (1989)-; Fastenrath, supra note 49, at 323.

222 Holmes, supra note 52, at 459–62; Martti, Koskenniemi, The Police in the Temple—Order, Justice and the UN: A Dialectical View, 6 Eur. J. Int’l L. 325 (1995).

223 Kelly, supra note 1, at 458; Kennedy, supra note 102, at 347.

224 Dworkin, supra note 46, at 246–47, 255–57.

225 Id. at 257.

226 Stanley, Fish, Working on the Chain Gang: Interpretation in Law and Literature, 60 Tex. L. Rev. 551, 559 (1982); Stanley, Fish, Wrong Again, 62 Tex. L. Rev. 299, 306 (1983).

227 Richard A. Falk, Presentation [on the extent of ideological neutrality of international law and international lawyers], in Change and Stability, supra note 3, at 137, 137.

228 Bedjaoui, supra note 121, at 136–37.

229 South West Africa (Eth. v. S. Afr.; Liber, v. S. Afr.), Second Phase, 1966 ICJ Rep. 6, 34 (July 18); cf. Christian, Tomuschat, Obligations Arising for States Without or Against Their Will, 241 Recueil des Cours 195, 303 (1993 IV).

230 Kennedy, supra note 102, at 407.

231 Bedjaoui, supra note 121, at 141. While developing states hold the majority of power, these norms may still be criticized for allowing the majority to bind the minority.

232 Karl, N. Llewellyn, The Common Law Tradition: Deciding Appeals 3545 (1960).

233 See also “coherentism” in epistemology. Nicholas, Everitt & Alec Fisher, Modern Epistemology 10207 (1995).

234 Thomas, M. Franck, Fairness in International Law and Institutions 38 (1995); Thomas, M. Franck, The Power of Legitimacy Among Nations 150 (1990); Franck, supra note 56, at 735–36.

235 Rawls, supra note 46, at 20; John, Rawls, Outline of a Decision Procedure for Ethics, 60 Phil. Rev. 177 (1951); see also Dworkin, supra note 46, at 66 n.17.1 am not arguing that the international system is akin to Rawls’s concept of the “original position”; rather, that his notion of a reflective equilibrium can be used more generally to reconcile inductive and deductive methodologies.

236 Rawls, supra note 46, at 21.

237 Id. at 19–20.

238 Grice, G. R., Moral Theories and Received Opinion, 52 Aristotelian Soc’y Proc. 1 (Supp. 1978); Hare, R. M., A Critical Study of John Rawls’ A Theory of Justice, 23 Phil. Q. 144, 14455 (1973).

239 Robin, Attfield, Environmental Philosophy and Prospects 92 (1994); Rawls, supra note 46, at 20.

240 Paul, K. Feyerabend, History of Philosophy of Science, in Oxford Companion, supra note 57, at 806, 80607 .

241 Rawls, supra note 46, at 20 n.7; see also Nelson, Goodman, Fact, Fiction, and Forecast 6568 (4th ed. 1983).

242 Dworkin, supra note 46, at 239–40.

243 Patricia, W. Birnie & Alan, E. Boyle, International Law and the Environment 89 (1992); Pierre-Marie, Dupuy, Overview of the Existing Customary Legal Regime Regarding International Pollution, in International Law and Pollution 61 (Daniel, B. Magrawed., 1991); Rüdiger, Wolfrum, Purposes and Principles of International Environmental Law, 1990 Ger. Y. B. Int’l L. 308, 309 .

244 Bodansky, supra note 41, at 110–13 (noting that transboundary pollution seems to be the rule rather than the exception and that customary environmental norms seem to be based on statements rather than regularities in behavior); Oscar, Schachter, The Emergence of International Environmental Law, 44 J. Int’l Aff. 457, 46263 (1991) (noting that there is only fragmentary evidence of state practice and opinio juris to support international environmental principles).

245 E.g., Convention on Long-Range Transboundary Air Pollution, Nov. 13, 1979, TIAS No. 10, 541, 1302 UNTS 217; Co-operation in the Field of Environment Concerning Natural Resources Shared by Two or More States, GA Res. 3129, UN GAOR, 28th Sess., Supp. No. 30, at 48, UN Doc. A/9030 (1973); OECD Council Recommendation C(74)224, Nov. 14, 1974, tit. B(2), reprinted in Organisation for Economic Co-Operation and Development, OECD and the Environment 142 (1986). See generally Bodansky, supra note 41, at 110–12, 114–15.

246 Stockholm Declaration on the Human Environment, Princ. 21, Report of the United Nations Conference on the Human Environment 3, UN Doc. A/CONF.48/14/Rev.l (1972), reprinted in 11 ILM 1416 (1972). This principle was reiterated (in slightly modified form) in Rio Declaration on Environment and Development, UN Doc. A/CONF.151/5/Rev.l (1992), reprinted in 31 ILM 874 (1992).

247 Brownlie, supra note 6, at 285–86.

248 Schachter, supra note 48, at 11 (citation omitted); see also Schachter, supra note 81, at 733–34.

249 Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties, supra note 83, Art. 53. 250 Cassese, supra note 83, at 147.

251 Malcolm, N. Shaw, Genocide in International Law, in International Law at a Time of Perplexity, supra note 81, at 797 .

252 Brownlie, supra note 6, at 514–17; Lauri, Hannikainen, Peremptory Norms (Jus Cogens) in International Law 22642 (1988).

253 Weil, supra note 94, at 427.

254 Restatement, supra note 6, §102 cmt. k; Thirlway, supra note 83, at 110; Charlesworth, supra note 38, at4; cf. Cassese, supra note 83, at 179.

255 Meron, supra note 2, at 61.

256 E.g., Human Rights Commission, Report of the Special Rapporteur on Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman and Degrading Treatment or Punishment, UN Doc. E/CN.4/1988/17, at 23 (1988); see also Schachter, supra note 15, at 338; D’Amato, Response, supra note 31, at 469.

257 Nicaragua, 1986 ICJ Rep. at 98, para. 186; see also Antonio, Cassese, Violence and Law in the Modern Age 3539 (Greenleaves, S.J. K. trans., 1988); Henkin, supra note 118, at 70; Meron, supra note 2, at 60 (citing Jonathan, I. Charney, The Power of the Executive Branch of the United States Government to Violate Customary International Law, 80 AJIL 913,. 916, (1986)); Charlesworth, supra note 38, at 21.

258 Weil, supra note 94, at 427.

259 Byers, supra note 6, at 183; Jiménez de Aréchaga, supra note 3, at 27.

260 Byers, supra note 6, at 156–62; D’Amato, supra note 6, at 56–66.

261 Hart, supra note 47, at 90.

262 D’Amato, supra note 6, at 97–98.

263 Weisburd, Customary IL, supra note 31, at 30–31.

264 North Sea Continental Shelf (FRG/Den.; FRG/Neth.), 1969 ICJ Rep. 3, 44 (Feb. 20); id. at 230–31 (Lachs, J., dissenting); Akehurst, supra note 7, at 37; Weisburd, supra note 208, at 107.

265 Rawls, supra note 46, at 20.

266 D’Amato, supra note 6, at 97.

267 Byers, supra note 6, at 157–59.

268 Bin Cheng, in International Law, supra note 19, at 249.

269 Anthony, A. D’Amato & Sudhir, K. Chopra, Whales: Their Emerging Right to Life, 85 AJIL. 21, (1991).

270 Nicaragua, 1986 ICJ Rep. at 109, para. 207.

271 Id.

272 Id. at 98, para. 186.

273 E.g., Charney, supra note 124, at 834; Louis, Henkin, Kosovo and the Law of “Humanitarian Intervention,” 93 AJIL 824, 82425 (1999).

274 Charney, supra note 124, at 834.

275 Bruno, Simma, NATO, the UN and the Use of Force: Legal Aspects, 10 Eur. J. Int’l L. 1 (1999), at <http://www.ejil.org/journal/index.html> (visited Oct. 1, 2001).

276 Cassese, supra note 124.

277 The draft resolution condemning NATO’s use of force, UN Doc. S/1999/328, was sponsored by Belarus, India, and the Russian Federation and supported by China, Namibia, and the Russian Federation in the Security Council.

278 For example, German Foreign Minister Kinkel stated, “The decision of NATO [on air strikes against the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia] must not become a precedent.” Deutscher Bundestag, Plenarprotokoll 13/248, at 23, 129 (Oct. 16, 1998), quoted in Simma, supra note 275.

279 Some states focused exclusively on the preliminary issue of jurisdiction; others, including Germany, argued that the intervention represented a justifiable exception to the normal rules. The United States focused on the humanitarian catastrophe, the acute threat to security of neighboring states, the serious violation of humanitarian law, and the resolutions of the Security Council but did not expressly argue for a right to unilateral humanitarian intervention. Oral pleadings (Yugo. v. U.S. etal.), 1999 ICJ Pleadings (Legality of Use of Force), at <http://www.icj-cij.org>.

280 Charney, supra note 124, at 836–37.

281 Gray, C., After the Ceasefire: Iraq, the Security Council and the Use of Force, 1994 Brit.Y. B. Int’l L. 135, 162 ; Dino, Kritsiotis, Reappraising Policy Objections to Humanitarian Intervention, 19 Mich. J. Int’l L. 1005, 1014 (1998).

282 Charney, supra note 124, at 836–39.

283 Cassese, supra note 257, at 35–39; Meron, supra note 2, at 60 (citing Charney, supra note 257); Henkin, supra note 118, at 70; Charlesworth, supra note 38, at 21.

284 SC Res. 1203 (Oct. 24, 1998); see also SC Res. 1199 (Sept. 23, 1998); SC Res. 1160 (Mar. 31, 1998).

285 See supra note 277.

286 This distinction is made by D’Amato, supra note 6, at 61–63, though not with respect to unilateral humanitarian intervention.

287 Brownlie, supra note 6, at 515; Cassese, supra note 83, at 147.

288 Brownlie, supra note 6, at 515; Shaw, supra note 251.

289 Kritsiotis, supra note 281, at 1040–46.

290 Christine, M. Chinkin, Kosovo: A “Good” or “Bad” War? 93 AJIL 841, 847 (1999).

291 Kritsiotis, supra note 281, at 1020–39.

292 Henkin, supra note 273, at 824–25.

293 Ruth, Wedgwood, NATO’s Campaign in Yugoslavia, 93 AJIL 828, 833 (1999)-.

294 Cassese, supra note 124; Charney, supra note 124, at 836–39; Wedgwood, supra note 293, at 828.

295 Akehurst, supra note 7, at 53.

296 Koskenniemi, supra note 45, at 2.

297 Meron, supra note 2, at 44–45.

298 Id. at 44; Schachter, supra note 110, at 539; Schachter, supra note 81, at 735.

299 Meron, supra note 2, at 58.

300 Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties, supra note 83, Art. 53.

301 Supported by Resolution on Permanent Sovereignty over Natural Resources, GA Res. 1803, UN GAOR, 17th Sess., Supp. No. 17, at 15, UN Doc. A/5217 (1962). See also Brownlie, supra note 6, at 527–29, 535–38.

302 Supported by Charter of Economic Rights and Duties of States, GA Res. 3281, UN GAOR, 29th Sess., Supp. No. 30, at 50, UN Doc. A/9030 (1974). See also Brownlie, supra note 6, at 526–27, 538.

303 Meron, supra note 2, at 44.

304 Alasdair, Macintyre, Three Rival Versions of Moral Enquiry: Encyclopaedia, Genealogy, and Tradition 234 (1990); see also Tasioulas, supra note 42, at 127.

305 Condorelli, supra note 66, at 81; Pellet, supra note 68, at 47.

306 D’Amato, supra note 6, at 89; Henkin, supra note 25, at 39, 42.

307 Chinkin, supra note 221, at 857–58.

* The research for this article was initially undertaken for my LLB dissertation at the Australian National University and was completed while I was teaching in the university’s Faculty of Law. I wish to thank Professor Hilary Charlesworth for her insightful comments on various drafts of the manuscript.

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