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Causes Worth Fighting For: Is There A Non-State Jus Ad Bellum?

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Chapter Summary

There is a clear understanding that the legitimacy of any use of force is a function of two distinct bodies of law: the jus in bello, and the jus ad bellum. This chapter argues that, although international law is far from having a clear and explicit position on the issue, it has, through various twists and turns, begun to recognize the fundamental validity of certain causes for a jus insurrectionis. It identifies four broad areas where such a right or something like it might be identified in international law: resistance to colonization and imperialism, resistance to aggression and illegal occupation, resistance to international crimes and atrocities, and resistance to tyranny and totalitarianism. International law took another path, gradually redefining the right to self-determination as involving a right to use force in certain situations of colonization, under the pressure of the nonaligned.

Keywords: colonization; international atrocities; international crimes; international law; Jus Ad Bellum



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