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International Law (Essay Sample)


The task was to define international law, and determine if it really exists. The sample paper delves into several statute provisions, cases, and legal interpretations in answering the questions.

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International Law
International law refers to a combination of legal rules that governs interactions among states. It consists of the principles and rules of general application that deals with conduct of international organizations and States in their international relations with private individuals, transnational companies, minority groups, and with one another. It is divided into Private International Law as it encompasses duties and rights of citizens of sovereign nations towards citizens of other sovereign nations and Public International Law, which involves relations among different sovereign states. International law is hugely entrenched on conventions, compromises, charters, agreements, treaties, protocols, and memorandums among others, as it does not have a law making body (Bederman 1).
The issue on whether International Law is really law and whether it exists has been a contentious issue among International Law scholars with various views emerging. I believe that International Law does really exists. However, it only exists in tenuous and weak form as it is not strong as domestic law. This is because a critical examination of international law reveals that it does not exists and it is not practiced or applicable to the level of the local laws. The first reason for this is that enforcement of international law is strongly and wholly dependent on willingness of member states to enforce it. It is not a matter of contention that without enforcement mechanisms laws are just merely suggestions (Bederman 13). For instance, it was a violation of international law for Iraq to attack Kuwait, as it does not allow invasion of a nation with the view of annexing territory. However, due to lack of enforcement mechanism, other member states did nothing to remedy the invasion as the only thing was building of the coalition by United States to reverse the invasion. It should also be noted that there is no international police and United States of America only acted as a matter of national interest. In addition, in as much as organizations such as World Trade Organization provide for leveling sanctions against violators of the agreements and arbitration of disputes among member states, in the event that a state ignores the rulings, further recourse does not exist.
On the idea of international law is the law of the nations, it is only with the consent of the governed states and not the way Bederman traditionally puts it. There does not exist an international legislature that make new laws and international law is a creature of hodgepodge of sources, such as intellectual treatises, accepted civilized standard...
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