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52 votes
Accepted

Is it politically acceptable to incentivize soldiers of another country to desert?

It has been done all the time: e.g., via dropping propaganda leaflets behind the enemy lines, as was done during both world wars. In modern days (e.g., in Israel confrontation with Palestinians) it is ...
Morisco's user avatar
  • 24.5k
52 votes

Based on International law, to what extent can Ukraine take aggressive military action within the territory of Russia?

International law does not distinguish between targets in Russia or Ukraine. What matters is that the target is legitimate, i.e. a military objective. Article 52(2) of the 1977 Additional Protocol I ...
JJJ's user avatar
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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
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
40 votes

What is exactly the issue with Russia using North Korean missiles?

The transfer of North Korean weapons to Russia: Is in violation of multiple UN resolutions. Increases the suffering of Ukrainian civilians, who are affected by the Russian attacks using these weapons....
Timur Shtatland's user avatar
39 votes

How easy would it be to distinguish between Hamas fighters and non combatants?

Yes, and no. (from reading quite a few small unit operations books about Afghanistan and Iraq). The Taliban ID-ing issue wasn't necessarily a big problem during heavy combat. Sure, there might be a ...
Italian Philosophers 4 Monica's user avatar
37 votes
Accepted

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 ...
Kevin's user avatar
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32 votes
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What is exactly the issue with Russia using North Korean missiles?

There are two major issues (for countries that don't have an amicable relationship with North Korea) with Russia buying and using North Korean missiles: It provides revenue (or goods if done as a ...
sfxedit's user avatar
  • 9,458
29 votes

Why do obvious humanitarian issues need to be voted on by members of the United Nations Security Council?

It is an obvious fact that all countries should help children, women and the wounded. No, it's not. It's not obvious. It's obvious to me, and to a lot of people, but not to everyone. Remember that ...
coteyr's user avatar
  • 1,906
29 votes

Why isn't bombing cities under any circumstance a war crime? Same applies to launching attacks from cities

There is the concept of declaring a city about to be occupied an open city. Attacking an open city is not acceptable, but neither is defending it or using it as a base for attack. Looking at this the ...
o.m.'s user avatar
  • 111k
29 votes
Accepted

Is it common to win a war with a strictly defensive posture?

There are examples of wars in modern times that were "won" by simply holding out until the cost for the invaders became so large that they decided to withdraw. Examples are: The Vietnam war ...
Philipp's user avatar
  • 77.7k
27 votes

Does the Geneva Convention with respect to prisoners of war apply to mercenaries?

No. Per the Protocols Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949: A mercenary shall not have the right to be a combatant or a prisoner of war. However, not all the people mentioned in ...
Obie 2.0's user avatar
  • 15.9k
26 votes

Why isn't bombing cities under any circumstance a war crime? Same applies to launching attacks from cities

There is a real risk in creating laws that do not achieve a minimum threshold of actual buy-in and compliance. For examples, you could refer to the US Prohibition. Or the Hague 1899 Convention ...
Italian Philosophers 4 Monica's user avatar
25 votes

Is Putin a valid military target in this war? What about Moscow based senior political and governmental figures with roles related to the war effort?

Russia is currently at war with Ukraine. An attack against not-directly-military targets in Russia (from bridges and power plants to aircraft factories and government offices) is legal if it follows ...
o.m.'s user avatar
  • 111k
25 votes

Is it politically acceptable to incentivize soldiers of another country to desert?

Most countries take the position that it is a crime for their own soldiers to defect and that they will not punish soldiers from another country's military. There is no international tribunal that ...
ohwilleke's user avatar
  • 82.6k
25 votes

Is there any historical evidence of conventional (non-guerilla) warfare techniques defeating hybrid guerilla warfare cost-efficiently?

Cost-effectively isn't that important a metric. Let's say you use a $500K missile to take out a $10K Toyota pickup truck with 6 AK-47 wielding guys. A really rich country can, to an extent ...
Italian Philosophers 4 Monica's user avatar
24 votes

Why are Stinger (surface to air missiles) and Javelin (anti-tank missiles) not considered escalatory in war theater of Ukraine?

You can't easily attack another country's territory using only man-portable missiles and infantry. movement speed is foot speed. If you have a localized breakthrough, exploitation speed is... foot ...
Italian Philosophers 4 Monica's user avatar
24 votes
Accepted

According to each of Russia and Ukraine, are Russia and Ukraine officially at war with each other?

Yes. In practice and under customary law, a declaration of war is not necessary for a state of war to exist. It suffices for one of the parties to make its intentions clear by actually commencing ...
Stančikas's user avatar
  • 22.5k
20 votes

Isn't sending weapons to Ukraine an escalation?

so sending weapons to Ukraine isn't breaking 'international law' (I know it's irrelevant, but can be used as an argument from the Russian side) In general, sending weapons isn't prohibited under ...
got trolled too much this week's user avatar
20 votes

Why isn't bombing cities under any circumstance a war crime? Same applies to launching attacks from cities

Because if you make the main objective of a war illegal, no one will care about your law. Wars are fought for control over territories, and you hold territory by holding the administrative centers of ...
vsz's user avatar
  • 2,663
18 votes

Isn't sending weapons to Ukraine an escalation?

In general what international law there is is made up of "norms" (i.e. the standards by which countries with enough hard or soft power expect other countries to behave by) and treaties (...
origimbo's user avatar
  • 21.4k
17 votes
Accepted

What are the steps towards officially recognizing a Cold War?

A Cold War is not a declared war. Possibly not even an undeclared war. It is not really a term in customary international law. So there are two things required: Somebody coins a memorable phrase and ...
o.m.'s user avatar
  • 111k
17 votes

Is it illegal for Russia to kill Ukrainian President Zelenskyy?

An unprovoked war of aggression is against international law. Russia claims to have justification, most of the world disagrees. Apparently, Russia still denies that there is a war between Russia and ...
o.m.'s user avatar
  • 111k
16 votes

Why isn't bombing cities under any circumstance a war crime? Same applies to launching attacks from cities

It's generally acknowledged that deliberate and indiscriminate targeting of cities, even with a military objective, can be viewed as contrary to the principles of the laws of war. There is no need ...
meriton's user avatar
  • 5,213
15 votes

Why are Stinger (surface to air missiles) and Javelin (anti-tank missiles) not considered escalatory in war theater of Ukraine?

TLDR: Because, quite literally, it is not escalatory. The US began supplying Ukraine with significant amounts of military equipment beginning with the "Little Green Men" incursion that began ...
eps's user avatar
  • 2,263
14 votes

Under what law can the U.S. arrest International Criminal Court (ICC) judges over war crimes probe?

Impersonation of a foreign official. Because ICC is not recognized as a court, if any officer of ICC claims to be be an officer of a court, they may be guilty of 18 U.S.C. § 915 impersonating an ...
grovkin's user avatar
  • 6,966
14 votes
Accepted

Why don't leaders of countries fight instead of armies in a war?

The reason leaders don't fight is because the first nation to not fight by these rules will win, and whoever doesn't form an army will lose their stuff. Angela Merkel decides that she's the rightful ...
Giter's user avatar
  • 10.2k
13 votes

Is it politically acceptable to incentivize soldiers of another country to desert?

Russia actually did exactly that during its takeover of Crimea: it incentivized soldiers of Ukraine stationed there to desert (change allegiance) on the premise of continuing being enlisted, now with ...
alamar's user avatar
  • 17.4k
13 votes

Why doesn't Russia assassinate Zelenskyy with a rocket?

Because they can't. Zelensky spends most of his time in a bunker, presumably ex-Soviet, so proof against any missile attack short of a nuke (and possibly even that). He does venture above ground from ...
Paul Johnson's user avatar

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