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113 votes
Accepted

Is there a strong legal guarantee that the U.S. can give to another country that it won't attack them?

No such guarantee would be meaningful if the US administration and congress change their opinion. Whatever they write in law or sign, they can undo -- if not legally then in practice. The US had ...
o.m.'s user avatar
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102 votes
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Why hasn't the U.S. government paid war reparations to any country it attacked?

The answer is right in the Wikipedia page you cited (emphasis added): War reparations are compensation payments made after a war by the vanquished to the victors. The United States has not been ...
Joe's user avatar
  • 15.7k
102 votes

Why does Russia see NATO as an aggressor when the Istanbul document signed by Russia grants each participant the right to chose its allies separately?

Russia (the Russian government) claims to believe that Ukraine and Europe are not sovereign actors, but rather controlled by the US. I do not know if they actually do believe that, but considering ...
o.m.'s user avatar
  • 109k
90 votes
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Why are the United States government as well as many others supporting Taiwanese sovereignty despite their own anti secession laws?

I'm from Taiwan, so I'll answer with some local perspective. There is a law on the books that says if Taiwan does not bend diplomatically they will try to make it part of China by force. The first ...
QuantumWalnut's user avatar
86 votes

Why is it not an invasion if Russia sends troops into Ukraine?

If the breakaway 'republics' are sovereign, which Russia now accepts but which the international community does not accept, Russia would be defending two allies at the invitation of those allies. Not ...
o.m.'s user avatar
  • 109k
76 votes

When is violent civil unrest defined as a civil war?

This is usually left for the historians to sort out. The key point at which something is a "war" is when potentially lethal unprovoked violence is not treated as a criminal matter, but as a ...
James K's user avatar
  • 121k
75 votes

What is the fundamental difference between whaling and hunting other animals?

I think there are two main reasons. Ethics (which does apply to dogs in many parts of the world) and the fact that there aren't that many whales (as opposed to dogs). Ethics It's seen as immoral. ...
JJJ's user avatar
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75 votes
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Can a country be only de jure sovereign ? (Such as Andorra)

In a way you are doing word games. International law has developed as customary law. There is no nature-given or God-given definition of sovereignty, it is merely a verbal shortcut to describe a whole ...
o.m.'s user avatar
  • 109k
70 votes
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Can I (a random person in the world) be prosecuted under the new Hong Kong security law?

How far applicable the law of a country is is decided by the law of that country. If other countries disagree, they can obviously decline to assist in the enforcement of those laws, and disallow the ...
Arno's user avatar
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69 votes
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What international laws might prohibit Brazil from cutting down the Amazon or using it as a natural resource of Brazil?

what international laws bar or place limits on how Brazil can use the Amazon keeping in mind the Brazilian government has jurisdiction over Brazilian land. There are no such international laws. A ...
ohwilleke's user avatar
  • 81.4k
67 votes

What is the fundamental difference between whaling and hunting other animals?

There is an ethical argument that hasn't been mentioned yet. Many people find whale hunting unethical (see JJJs excellent answer), despite supporting deer hunting and chicken farming, because we think ...
gerrit's user avatar
  • 48.5k
65 votes

Why isn't any unprovoked act of aggression considered a war crime?

An actual judicial definition of these crimes can be found in the Rome Statute that established the International Criminal Court. The statute distinguishes 4 crimes: The crime of genocide; Crimes ...
meriton's user avatar
  • 5,118
61 votes

Why are the territories gained by Israel in 1967 not internationally recognized?

The general philosophy of post-WWII international order is that the inhabitants of a territory are entitled to self-determination. While there are still many political and historical obstacles to the ...
Erwan's user avatar
  • 17.9k
61 votes

Is the Israeli "complete siege" on Gaza strip a war crime?

Yes, completely cutting off food and water is a war crime. For example, we have the following quote by John Kerry, then US foreign secretary: People are dying; children are suffering not as a result ...
Arno's user avatar
  • 13.7k
56 votes
Accepted

Why do US tech companies honor rulings by the EU when they don't have jurisdiction?

If the companies ignore the laws of the European Union (EU), then the EU can fine them. The United States (US) may refuse to collect on the fines, but even so, the example company is doing business ...
Brythan's user avatar
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56 votes
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Can a country avoid prosecution for crimes against humanity by denying it happened?

Your question is slightly at odds with reality. First off, with the important exception of the US government, nobody sensible is quibbling over the mounting amount of evidence that Agent Orange had ...
Denis de Bernardy's user avatar
54 votes

Why hasn't the U.S. government paid war reparations to any country it attacked?

The agreement to pay war reparations is usually part of a peace treaty. It is usually a demand the superior party makes from the inferior party in exchange for peace. In any wars where the United ...
Philipp's user avatar
  • 77.6k
52 votes
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Why isn't bombing cities under any circumstance a war crime? Same applies to launching attacks from cities

The short answer is that any military effort relies on production and distribution, which is largely carried out by civilians in urban areas. If a nation needs to produce military ordinance or ...
Ted Wrigley's user avatar
  • 70.2k
51 votes
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Are power plants legitimate military targets under international law?

There’s nothing that I’m aware of in international law prohibiting the targeting of power plants in general - except for the blanket protection given to civilian objects defined in Article 52 of ...
CDJB's user avatar
  • 108k
50 votes

Why are the United States government as well as many others supporting Taiwanese sovereignty despite their own anti secession laws?

a country which could be argued to have seceded Secession means that a territory is leaving a nation. That's not quite what happened in this case. To briefly recap history, 1911 saw the creation of ...
meriton's user avatar
  • 5,118
49 votes

What is the fundamental difference between whaling and hunting other animals?

One undiscussed reason that Japanese whaling is so specifically opposed by certain nations (specifically New Zealand & Australia) is that much of the Japanese whaling happens in the Southern Ocean,...
llama's user avatar
  • 1,463
47 votes
Accepted

Isn't sending weapons to Ukraine an escalation?

First, weapons can be delivered through Poland: Reznikov (Ukrainian Defense Minister), in his video, tried to provide an answer. “You may deliver it to Poland,” he told potential donors. “From there, ...
Italian Philosophers 4 Monica's user avatar
47 votes
Accepted

Is the Israeli "complete siege" on Gaza strip a war crime?

I am surprised that none of the answers so far cite actual international law (treaties). From the Additional Protocols of the Geneva Conventions, article 54: Starvation of civilians as a method of ...
adam.baker's user avatar
  • 3,069
46 votes
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Even if by accident, is the act of military men showing up in a foreign country in full uniform considered an invasion?

It depends on what you mean by "invasion." To the best of my knowledge, there is no single treaty that offers a uniform, widely-accepted definition of this term in the context of ...
Kevin's user avatar
  • 9,423
45 votes
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Are nations required to allow their own citizens entry under international law?

The ability to return to your country is considered a human right, Article 13(2) of the declaration of human rights and also Article 12 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. ...
o.m.'s user avatar
  • 109k
41 votes
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Why is it not an invasion if Russia sends troops into Ukraine?

Part of what makes this question a bit thorny is the Western position that Russia already had troops in the breakaway regions. So arguably Russia sending in troops could be considered them bolstering ...
TenthJustice's user avatar
  • 10.7k
41 votes
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Did Russia violate international laws in Ukraine and if so, how?

The EU Council has accused Russia of multiple breaches of international laws and agreements, and has helpfully enumerated them in its condemnation of its actions: On 22 February 2022, the High ...
CDJB's user avatar
  • 108k
40 votes

Can I (a random person in the world) be prosecuted under the new Hong Kong security law?

It is quite common for countries to prosecute both actions by and against their nationals as soon as the perpetrator enters their jurisdiction. Some will also prosecute certain crimes by anyone who is ...
o.m.'s user avatar
  • 109k
38 votes
Accepted

Does nuclear propulsion applied to military ships fall under civil or military nuclear power?

The treaty you're thinking of is the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (also known as the NPT or NNPT). The core of this treaty for non-nuclear weapon states is Article II, which says ...
cpast's user avatar
  • 14.3k
38 votes

Why, according to the UN, "gender-biased abortion" is against human rights but "abortion in general" is not?

"Unborn baby" is not a protected characteristic and hence the "unborn" cannot be discriminated against. Many would argue that the "unborn" are not legally persons and as ...
user141592's user avatar
  • 2,591

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