UIUC International Law and Humanitarian Intervention Questions

I’m working on a international law writing question and need a sample draft to help me understand better.

Please just focus on question2, 3, and 4.

Question 2 – International Human Rights Claims in U.S. Courts (maximum word count 750)

Consider Justice Souter’s opinion in Sosa v. Alvarez-Machain and Justice Roberts’ opinion in

Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum Co.

A. Describe and analyze the holding and importance of each case.

B. Compare the two opinions and their logic. What are the most important ways in which they are different from each other? Why do these differences matter?

C. In your opinion, which opinion provides the better approach to addressing international law claims in U.S. courts? Please explain your answer.

Question 3 – Sources of International Law (maximum word count 750)

A. What is the role of treaties as a source of international law. How are treaties formed and under what circumstances are they binding?

B. What is the role of custom under international law? What are the elements of customary international law? Under what circumstances is it binding?

C. Consider the following statement. Argue either in favor of or against the position in the statement.

Customary international law facilitated and accompanied the rise of colonialism.

It has safeguarded the interests of wealthy Western states and prioritized

Western legal traditions. As such, customary international law should not be considered an important source of binding international law. Instead, the sole legitimate form of international law is the law of treaties. The International Court of Justice, other international courts, and domestic courts should not consider custom when adjudicating international disputes.

Question 4 – Humanitarian Intervention (maximum word count 750)

A former U.S. government official made the following argument. He advocates the creation of an exception to the general rule prohibiting humanitarian intervention.

International lawyers in and out of government should define a narrow exception to Article 2(4) of the U.N. Charter that would clarify the contours of a lawful exception to a rigid rule that humanitarian intervention is always illegal.

The creation of such a narrow exception would better balance the risks of over and under-action in the most dire humanitarian situations.

A. Explain the meaning of Article 2(4) and how it affects humanitarian intervention.

B. Draft an exception to Article 2(4) that would accomplish the goals described above.

C. Justify your exception. How does your proposal address cases in which you favor intervention? How does it exclude cases in which you would oppose it? What are the principled limits on the overuse of humanitarian intervention?


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