< < <
Date Index
> > >
Pase One: Immediate Mobilization #2 cont.
by Adam Starr
15 March 2002 21:46 UTC
< < <
Thread Index
> > >
Hello WSN World,

I got my scheduling wrong so I've run back to the
computer to finish my thoughts. Where was I...

Dennis Blewitt considered three different legal
systems: common law, civil law, and secular. He
suggests that the legal system in Russia/USSR and the
Commonwealth exist within a civil Napoleonic legal
system which is top down.

Dennis goes on to say that rather than the legal
systems themselves, there is a need for analysis in
terms of power. He states that the structure of the
legal system inlfluences behaviour, distribution, and
exercise of power. Multinationals have the current
power to define and impliment structure and consenses
of transnationals in a codified system most efficient
to them (Dennis, could you please expand upon
"codified"). In essence there is no consenses and the
above interest groups have consolidated the power to
dictate economics, trade, slavery (contemporary or
historical?) and distribution of wealth and resources.
International Law has thus become irrelavent with this
power concentration. Not only that, but since this
power concentration comes from the US, it is the lone
suprpower that defining International Law under the
guise of democracy and freedom.

Dennis suggests that the only way to curb this power
is within the courts at the national level (in any
given country) to deem international agreements (or
laws) as unconstitutional. This push within national
courts must then come from the local or regional

Then enters Andre Gunder Frank. He replied to the
comments made by both Charles and Dennis considering
the US violations against International Law in light
of continued US bombing in Iraq and the NATO/US
"Kosovo" War. AGF poses "three and half" excellent
points concerning the US and Intenational law

1) No single NATO country consulted their Parliament /
Senate concerning military action in Yugoslavia.
2) In the US, confirmation of International Treaties
has allowed the US Senate to make stipulations of
various parts of such treaties. Therfor, violations of
international law is a violation of US law.
3) The present war in Afghanistan has very little
domestic opposition. You're either with us or against
us and as such, there is no use of national  law to
defend international law.
3.5) There is no visible public or political concern
with any of the three concerns above. Whether the US
has the right to wage unilateral war has not been

As AGF stated, "the major attainment of civilization
has been law (national and International) to intervene
against the Hobbsian war of all against all. How then
can it be that this war is being fought allegedly to
'defend civilization' by destroying its major
accomplishment? What civilization is there laeft to
defend if we do not ask, never mind answer, even this
essentially simple question?"

In essence, AGF has suggested that the national court
has not been a forum for questioning the legalities of
military mobilization. This concurrs with both Charles
and Dennis in suggesting that power within national
courts has been passed to interest groups that serve
the neo-liberal agenda. 

However, one note,  I can attest to a correction to
point 1 made by AGF. In late October prior to the NATO
bombing, the Canadian Parliament did pass a bill
concerning the use of military action should the need
be. However, it was done in the midst of domestic
conflict (not like we have much to conflict about,
probably Quebec seperation), prior to any indications
that NATO was to be involved in Kosovo, and was
quickly passed over with very little media coverage.

This just goes to show how the presidence of
International Treaties such as NATO or International
Organizations (WTO) are increasingly limiting the
sphere domestic policy choices. Yes, democracy
(whether we've ever actually had it or not) is eroding
away from the top down and it is becomming
increasingly difficult to address it as the forum gets
higher and higher above its sphere of influence. What
to do?

Where do we aim at? The US? Would we be deemed
terrorists by not being satisfied with the current
capitalist world-system? I agree with Charles,
non-violence is key. I have seen (even witnessed in
some cases) the atrocities of violence and genocide in
Cambodia with my own eyes. It's a sickness that hard
to cure. It spreads like a virus and opportunists rise
to the occasion. Afghanistan will clearly be a patient
for some time to come.

Let us continue our discourse over the legal system
considering ways to mobilize against it. As AGF said,
why has there been no domestic opposition or even
questioning of the legalities of war within the
national courts? This can be extended to trade,
international relations, etc. Perhaps Bush Jr. and his
advisors knew all too well that any oppostion would be
deemed anti-American. "You're either with us or
against us." Nobody in the US wants that label.

Resist convention, it's only neo-liberal...

Adam T. Starr
Undergraduate of Political Science, UVic
3009 Quadra Street, Victoria, British Columbia
V8T 4G2 Canada
(011) (250) 472-1223
adam@hornbyisland.com or reunitedhornby@yahoo.com

Do You Yahoo!?
Yahoo! Sports - live college hoops coverage

< < <
Date Index
> > >
World Systems Network List Archives
at CSF
Subscribe to World Systems Network < < <
Thread Index
> > >