110 votes
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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 ...
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97 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 ...
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  • 14.6k
87 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 ...
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75 votes

What is the fundamental difference between catching whales 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. ...
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75 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 ...
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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 ...
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  • 77.7k
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 ...
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  • 6,855
67 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 ...
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  • 51.2k
63 votes

What is the fundamental difference between catching whales 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 ...
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  • 43.8k
60 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 ...
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  • 2,046
56 votes
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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 ...
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  • 87.9k
55 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 ...
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  • 14.8k
52 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 ...
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50 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 ...
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  • 66.7k
48 votes
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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, ...
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47 votes

What is the fundamental difference between catching whales 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,...
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  • 1,297
46 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. ...
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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 ...
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  • 7,079
42 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 ...
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  • 5,544
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 ...
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  • 77.7k
39 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 ...
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  • 79.8k
38 votes
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Does the Chinese Consulate in Houston have to comply with the closure order?

Doesn't China have to comply with this closure order? I'd say so. Per Vienna Convention on Consular Relations, of which China is a signatory: TERMINATION OF THE FUNCTIONS OF A MEMBER OF A CONSULAR ...
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  • 3,968
37 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 ...
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  • 2,371
37 votes

How does debt-trap diplomacy work?

No, China is unlikely to invade any countries which refuses to pay their debt. No, they will do something far worse: They will tell the rating agencies! Every government has a credit rating assigned ...
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  • 66.7k
36 votes
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Under what law can the U.S. arrest International Criminal Court (ICC) judges over war crimes probe?

The ICC has approximately no legal status under the US Constitution. In particular: It is not an Article III (federal) court because it was not established by Congress. It is not treated as a foreign ...
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  • 7,079
36 votes
Accepted

Is the U.S. military bound by the same environmental laws as the country being occupied?

No. The U.S. military claims sovereign immunity and also has express exemptions from many (but not all) U.S. environmental laws. The local courts have no practical authority over the U.S. military ...
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  • 51.2k
35 votes

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

If they have EU-registered subsidiaries and/or operate business towards EU customers, why shouldn't they be subject to EU laws? And yes, technically the EU can block the domain name, not that this ...
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  • 718
35 votes

What international laws might prohibit Brazil from cutting down the Amazon or using it as a natural resource of Brazil?

International laws don't prevent anything unless you're interested in having a war to back them up.
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34 votes
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What is the United States' interest in Ukraine?

The US's only interest in Ukraine is to keep Russia out of Ukraine. The US maintains a containment strategy on Russia, meaning that it tries to keep Russia from expanding and becoming a powerful ...
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  • 2,633
32 votes
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Can withdrawing asylum be illegal?

what international law(s) are at play here? In the case of Assange being removed from the Ecuadorian embassy with the consent of the ambassador -- only the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations. ...
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