REBUS SIC STANDIBUS: AN ANALYSIS
Rebus sic standibus doctrine permits the unilateral termination of a treaty in certain exceptional situations when there is a fundamental change in the circumstances that radically transforms the extent of the obligation to be performed[i] so as to change the ‘essential basis’[ii] for the consent of the parties. The doctrine can be sourced from Conventional and Customary International law and its application by International Tribunals makes for an interesting analysis. [Continue Reading]
TERRA NULLIUS: TRACING PHILOSOPHICAL ORIGINS TO FUTURE RESOLVE
Shreenath A. Khemka
Terra Nullius is a Latin doctrine of Roman law; the phrase comprises of two parts, which translate as following: land (terra); no (nullius). In contemporary application the doctrine would mean territories that are not under the sovereignty of any state. Continue Reading
THE ACCESSION OF TURKEY TO THE EUROPEAN UNION
European Christian democrats have argued that the kind of a civilisation in the process of being built in Europe is one where a country like Turkey has no place.[i] This upfront confession, though seemingly narrow, raises crucial questions regarding identity and the extent of this identity, along with the basis upon which it is grounded. As Nicole Fontaine, President of the European Parliament very lucidly described the inability of Turkey to be a part of the European Union (EU) not because of the lack of fulfilment of officially published touchstones of political and economic stability but because of the unresolved concerns regarding ‘cultural integration’ that shall inevitably arise in the event of Turkey being accepted as one of the members of the Union at the Helsinki summit; the belief that Turkey, though being a part of Europe (geographically) can never be accepted as being ‘in’ Europe is widespread.
GAME OF THRONES AND GENEVA CONVENTION (III)
Popular Culture more than often reflects elucidations of law in reality. Popular culture depicts instances such as war, treatment towards prisoners and aspects criminal law, varying in its nature and content. Recently, Game of Thrones (or Song of Ice and Fire Series) has grasped its clutches on society and media. Characters from Game of Thrones either obey or diverge from International Humanitarian Law (IHL) principles in reality. Recently viewers all over the world were exposed to the idea of allowing Mance Ryder, the leader of the Free Folk, to be burnt alive at the Wall by Stannis Baratheon. Where the humane treatment of Mance Rayder in the television series is never highlighted , analyzing Stannis Baratheon’s actions along with Article 13 of Geneva Convention, in order to understand IHL in the context of popular culture may help.
CULT OF PERSONALITY, MILITIA AND GENOCIDE
“By the skillful and sustained use of propaganda, one can make a people see even heaven as hell or an extremely wretched life as paradise.”
The aforetime instances of genocide and mass atrocities outline a pattern in behavior of perpetrators, giving us a few indicators of an imminent genocide. The foremost trait is the alienation of a particular group. Alienation is further followed by a number of discriminatory acts by the perpetrator. Another chief feature is the suppression of the right to free speech. Massive use of propaganda to amplify the personality of one single leader is an important factor that has been observed to facilitate a genocidal condition. The use of private militia or a paramilitary organization is another common trait that has been observed in a number of cases. The Chetniks killed the Bosniaks, Interahamwe killed the Tutsis, Janjaweed killed the Nuba, Mugabe’s Fifth Brigade killed in the Ndebele regions, Musaveni’s National Resistance Army tormented the Ugandans, Mugabe used ZANLA and the Shabiha serves as Bashar Al-Assad’s death squad. This is followed by the inability of the target group to protect itself, reminding us of our terrors through death tolls. Continue reading