At its current rate, technological development has outpaced corresponding changes in international law. Proposals to remedy this deficiency have been made, in part, by members of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (led by the Russian Federation), but the United States and select allies have rejected these proposals, arguing that existing international law already provides a suitable comprehensive framework necessary to tackle cyber-warfare. Cyber-Attacks and the Exploitable Imperfections of International Law does not contest (and, in fact, supports) the idea that contemporary jus ad bellum and jus in bello, in general, can accommodate cyber-warfare. However, this analysis argues that existing international law contains significant imperfections that can be exploited; gaps, not yet filled, that fail to address future risks posed by cyber-attacks.
Forty years ago, a majority of Americans were highly engaged in issues of war and peace. Whether to go to war or keep out of conflicts was a vital question at the heart of the country’s vibrant, if fractious, democracy. But American political consciousness has drifted. In the last decade, America has gone to war in Iraq and Afghanistan, while pursuing a new kind of warfare in Yemen, Somalia, Libya, and Pakistan. National security issues have increasingly faded from the political agenda, due in part to the growth of government secrecy.
In lucid and chilling detail, journalist and lawyer Scott Horton shows how secrecy has changed the way America functions. Executive decisions about war and peace are increasingly made by autonomous, self-directing, and unaccountable national security elites. Secrecy is justified as part of a bargain under which the state promises to keep the people safe from its enemies, but in fact allows excesses, mistakes, and crimes to go unchecked. Bureaucracies use secrets to conceal their mistakes and advance their power in government, invariable at the expense of the rights of the people. Never before have the American people had so little information concerning the wars waged in their name, nor has Congress exercised so little oversight over the war effort. American democracy is in deep trouble.
Continue reading “Lords of Secrecy: The National Security Elite and America’s Stealth Warfare”
This book follows the history of the international law of peace and armed conflict over the last 25 years. It highlights both the parameters that have remained the same over the years as well as the new challenges now facing international law. The articles analyze new developments concerning the prohibition of the use of force in international relations, self-determination of peoples, human rights and human security as well as international coordination of humanitarian assistance.