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Old 02-12-2008   #1
marct
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Default Responsibility to Protect (R2P): Catch All

This is being sponsored by my department and I have been asked to distribute it. It's at Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada

Quote:
COVE Public Lecture

Human Rights and the Responsibility to Protect: From Theory to Practice
Thursday, February 28, 2008
8:00 pm
102 Azrieli Theatre

Speaker: Louise Fréchette

Currently a distinguished Fellow at the Centre for International Governance Innovation of Waterloo, Madame Fréchette was Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations (1998 to 2006), Ambassador to Argentina and Uruguay (1985-1988), Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the United Nations (1992-1994), Associate Deputy Minister of Finance (1995), and Deputy Minister of National Defence (1995-1998). She is also a member of the Board of Directors of the Trudeau Foundation and the Pearson Peacekeeping Centre.

Abstract:
The end of the Cold war marked the beginning of a new era for Human rights. With more countries embracing democracy and the rule of law, the international community was able to agree on many initiatives aimed at strengthening international human rights institutions. It also adopted a more interventionist stance, deploying new- style peace missions charged with much more than just monitoring ceasefires. The concept of the “responsibility to protect” which embodies this new vision was formally adopted in the fall of 2005, thanks in large part to the efforts of Canada. Its application in the numerous cases of gross abuse of human rights still raging in various parts of the world is proving problematic, however. With the political winds changing and sobering experiences on the ground, how strong is the commitment to Human rights and the “responsibility to protect”? Are the improvements in international Human Rights cooperation irreversible or are we at risk of reverting to the times when sovereignty and non-intervention reigned supreme?


Co-sponsored by Carleton University’s Centre on Values and Ethics, the Centre for Security and Defence Studies, and the Pearson Peacekeeping Centre.
As a side note, if you are in Ottawa and are going to attend, shoot me a PM.



Marc
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Old 02-13-2008   #2
Rex Brynen
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Default R2p

It would be interesting to hear what Louise Fréchette has to say.

I'm struck how much the entire language of R2P has been struck from the current (Harper) government's vocabulary because it is viewed as a Liberal invention--even though the concept could be quite usefully deployed in support of the current Canadian ISAF mission.
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Old 03-28-2011   #3
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Default Libya and the Responsibility to Protect

Libya and the Responsibility to Protect

Entry Excerpt:

Libya and the Responsibility to Protect
by Charli Carpenter

Download the Full Article: Libya and the Responsibility to Protect

There has been a fair amount of debate over Obama’s decision to join Western powers in using force to protect civilians in Libya. Among various refrains is the claim that “Responsibility to Protect” (R2P) doctrine lacks moral strength if applied selectively.

According to this line of thinking, the international community can’t legitimately go after Qaddafi if it won’t/can’t also go after every other dictator. However, it is important to recall that R2P doctrine, as laid out by the International Commission on Intervention and State Sovereignty and acknowledged as a legal principle in several multilateral documents, actually promotes military force for civilian protection not in every case where it might be merited, but rather only in limited circumstances mapping roughly onto just war theory.

Download the Full Article: Libya and the Responsibility to Protect

Charli Carpenter, Associate Professor of Political Science at University of Massachusetts-Amherst, is the author of two books on the protection of civilians. She blogs about human security and asymmetric warfare at The Duck of Minerva and Lawyers, Guns and Money.



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Old 09-20-2011   #4
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Default R2P is the New COIN?

R2P is the New COIN?

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Old 01-06-2012   #5
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Default Responsibility to Protect?

Who has a responsibility to protect the people of this world?
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Old 01-06-2012   #6
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Default Responsibility to Protect

MikeF,

This concept is not new and I'm sure JMM will chime in from the international law aspect. My own historical understanding is that it really came to have an impact after 1918, principally through the post-war treaties in Europe and the League of Nations work, again mainly in Europe, e.g. Silesia. Within a relatively short time history shows the concept, let alone the practice died and has had periods of life again, principally via the UN.

IMHO it is a mixture of shame and politics - invariably after genocide, border changes - not regime change.

In 2011 certain advocates, I think mainly American, started to espouse R2P and expanded the concept and application. My objection to R2P was the apparent thinking the USA and maybe a few others had this responsibility.

Was there not a thread on the theme? On a quick search one thread in 2008 about a lecture in Canada and two SWJ items.
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Old 01-06-2012   #7
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Default

David,

Keep this thread open. Given the strategy decision yesterday, this is the coming policy debate.
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Old 01-06-2012   #8
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Default Responsibility = Requirement

I'm not up on the full history of the concept, but do recall some sort of UN endorsement back in 2005 or so. I believe many advocate tend to tie it with the UN Declaration of Human Rights. It began, I think, as sanctioning of multi-lateral action to protect against genocide, war crimes, and other crimes against humanity. All of that seems fine until you peal back the onion.

By use of the word "responsibility" a requirement is implied. Responsibility equates to an affirmative act. In other words, when one is responsible for something, one must affirmatively act in furtherance of that responsibility. But who, on the international stage, has the capability to act? Often that would be the US as we possess the ability to project and maintain power globally. So is this simply a doctrine advocating a requirement for the US to act in furtherance of human rights interests that, while noble, may not comport with national interest, particularly in a budget tightened post-GWOT environment? It would seem so. Change "responsibility" to "right," and thereby empower rather than require nation-states to act and maybe we come closer to the mark. However, other problems arise.

The inability of the US to afford such a strategy/doctrine/whatever, is not really the main issue. The crux of this issue is the breakdown of notions of post-Westphalian sovereignty. Sovereignty is the heart of the UN Charter, right alongside the prohibition of the use of force as a staple of international relations. The Responsibility to Protect (R2P) Doctrine weakens both of these concepts. To be sure, the concept may indeed have noble underpinnings but its advocates have failed to look at its unintended consequences. Might the doctrine be used as a cover for otherwise illegal use of force under international law? Sure.

As an example, assume the illegality of the Iraq invasion (trying to avoid a political discussion outside the main topic here). Rather than argue WMD, the US, under R2P, could simply have pointed to Saddam's genocidal activity against the Kurds and/or the Shiites. Had this been the main argument in a world that accepts R2P, the invasion would have had international sanction. Its all in how something is presented I guess.

Another issue, related to the erosion of UN Charter principles, is the Libya operation. Many pointed to R2P as justification. The Charter only allows the UNSC to sanction use of force when a breach to international peace and security occurs. At the time the UNSC authorized the use of force in Libya, the threat to peace was strictly internal to Libya. Even the refugee situation had not yet risen to a substantial problem. However, even if it had, I would hardly think refugees to qualify as an international breach of peace and security given that its has occurred, and is occurring, in many places without UNSC action.

Lastly, look at Syria. Certainly, the possibility of an international breach of peace and security is much higher there than in Libya when the UNSC took action yet no action has been taken. Why? How can R2P be advocated when it cannot or will not be evenly applied? Also, where does one draw the line? What ends may be sought in an R2P intervention? Should it only encompass the crimes against humanity type issues or lesser issues as well? The Libya operation would seem to indicate something less. If this be the case, then can China be subject to R2P due to its human rights violations? Could Russia? And what of internationalists that argue American human rights violations due to the death penalty, vestiges of racism, etc.? Of course, these three nation-states will not be subject to R2P due to their massive militaries. So then does R2P become merely another post-colonial tool for the developed world to play cop for the undeveloped world?

Fascinating topic because there is much more than meets the eye here. I look forward to reading the thoughts of others.
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Old 01-06-2012   #9
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Default Another way to look at it

All along throughout the Cold War it was but a dream and an illusion that we were protecting anyone other than ourselves. Can we really force others to change their ways and transform societies?
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Old 01-06-2012   #10
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Default No

Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeF View Post
All along throughout the Cold War it was but a dream and an illusion that we were protecting anyone other than ourselves. Can we really force others to change their ways and transform societies?
In a word: no. I agree with what is implied in your comment. Change must be desired, otherwise the weak merely accommodate until they can fight back or the one seeking change gets bored and leaves. I've never really believed the US has benevolently sought to help others. We, like all nations, act in our own interests (or at least think we do). The desire to help others is merely window dressing for the masses.
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"You must, therefore know that there are two means of fighting: one according to the laws, the other with force; the first way is proper to man, the second to beasts; but because the first, in many cases, is not sufficient, it becomes necessary to have recourse to the second." -- Niccolo Machiavelli (from The Prince)
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Old 01-06-2012   #11
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Default

That was my inner Edgar Allen Poe talking. Now, I'll switch to whom Ken calls Waldo (Emerson).

The only way a man, village, or state can change, transform, or transcend is through self-reliance.
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Old 01-06-2012   #12
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Default Force others? Force Us!

MikeF,

Perhaps your question:
Quote:
Can we really force others to change their ways and transform societies?
This may need to be changed? I assume your use of 'we' refers to the USA, perhaps with a few other friends.

It looks very different, especially if you ask Americans and others, when it reads Can others force us to change our ways and transform societies? Somehow I expect those who use R2P rarely consider it being applied to them.
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Old 01-06-2012   #13
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Default NO David, it's correct.

Quote:
Originally Posted by davidbfpo View Post
MikeF,

Perhaps your question:

This may need to be changed? I assume your use of 'we' refers to the USA, perhaps with a few other friends.

It looks very different, especially if you ask Americans and others, when it reads Can others force us to change our ways and transform societies? Somehow I expect those who use R2P rarely consider it being applied to them.
Under R2P and the UN, WE could be anyone.
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Old 01-06-2012   #14
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Default Human rights, citizens’ rights.

Mahmood Mamdani’s book Saviors and survivors deals provocatively but well IMHO with the topic(s) under discussion in this thread.

Quote:
If the rights of the citizen are pointedly political, the rights of the human pertain to sheer survival; they are summed up in one word: protection. The new language refers to its subjects not as bearers of rights—and thus active agents in their own emancipation—but as passive beneficiaries of an external ‘responsibility to protect.’ (pp. 274–75)
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Old 01-06-2012   #15
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Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by ganulv View Post
Mahmood Mamdani’s book Saviors and survivors deals provocatively but well IMHO with the topic(s) under discussion in this thread.
Now, throw in a bit of Machiavelli about how "We" deal with "those" who would do others harm and you have sound policy that doesn't have to bankrupt anyone.
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Old 01-06-2012   #16
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Default Mark Twain on Imperialism

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"You ask me about what is called imperialism. Well, I have formed views about that question. I am at the disadvantage of not knowing whether our people are for or against spreading themselves over the face of the globe. I should be sorry if they are, for I don't think that it is wise or a necessary development. As to China, I quite approve of our Government's action in getting free of that complication. They are withdrawing, I understand, having done what they wanted. That is quite right. We have no more business in China than in any other country that is not ours. There is the case of the Philippines. I have tried hard, and yet I cannot for the life of me comprehend how we got into that mess. Perhaps we could not have avoided it -- perhaps it was inevitable that we should come to be fighting the natives of those islands -- but I cannot understand it, and have never been able to get at the bottom of the origin of our antagonism to the natives. I thought we should act as their protector -- not try to get them under our heel. We were to relieve them from Spanish tyranny to enable them to set up a government of their own, and we were to stand by and see that it got a fair trial. It was not to be a government according to our ideas, but a government that represented the feeling of the majority of the Filipinos, a government according to Filipino ideas. That would have been a worthy mission for the United States. But now -- why, we have got into a mess, a quagmire from which each fresh step renders the difficulty of extrication immensely greater. I'm sure I wish I could see what we were getting out of it, and all it means to us as a nation."
Autobiography of Mark Twain

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Old 01-06-2012   #17
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Default R2P - Politik (part 1)

As LawVol correctly points out, the modern genesis of R2P at the UN level is found in 2005's World Summit Outcome Document, Paragraphs 138-139:

Quote:
Heads of state and government agreed to the following text on the Responsibility to Protect in the Outcome Document of the High-level Plenary Meeting of the General Assembly in September 2005

138. Each individual State has the responsibility to protect its populations from genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity. This responsibility entails the prevention of such crimes, including their incitement, through appropriate and necessary means. We accept that responsibility and will act in accordance with it. The international community should, as appropriate, encourage and help States to exercise this responsibility and support the United Nations in establishing an early warning capability.

139. The international community, through the United Nations, also has the responsibility to use appropriate diplomatic, humanitarian and other peaceful means, in accordance with Chapters VI and VIII of the Charter, to help protect populations from genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity. In this context, we are prepared to take collective action, in a timely and decisive manner, through the Security Council, in accordance with the Charter, including Chapter VII, on a case-by-case basis and in cooperation with relevant regional organizations as appropriate, should peaceful means be inadequate and national authorities manifestly fail to protect their populations from genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity. We stress the need for the General Assembly to continue consideration of the responsibility to protect populations from genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity and its implications, bearing in mind the principles of the Charter and international law. We also intend to commit ourselves, as necessary and appropriate, to helping States build capacity to protect their populations from genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity and to assisting those which are under stress before crises and conflicts break out.
This statement is notable for placing the obligation on each individual state to prevent the various "badnesses"; and then affirming Chapter VII "Peace Enforcement" powers in the UN if a state fails that obligation. While the statement does not explicitly cover Violent Non-State Actors (acting in a failed state, for example), the failure of the failed state to prevent their "war crimes" would be adequate grounds for the UN to act within the terms of the statement.

The R2P arena is marked by Politik (politics and policy); and cannot be validly claimed (in my opinion, obviously) as an area governed by a determinative international law. That came home to me in connection with our (USAian) Libyan venture based on the UN Resolution and Presidential "Non-War Powers". While a number of voices shouted non-compliance with the War Powers Resolution and outright unconstitutionality, the salient fact was that Congress took no action opposing the President's actions. Thus, the President did not act illegally (since Congress did not act at all). That was an object lesson (some might say abject lesson) in what the Supreme Court has called "political questions" - and therefore, outside of the legal realm.

Part 2 will cover the 2001 "Canadian" Report, which is the intellectual basis for the R2P concept. Part 3 will covern some of the international organizations which are involved in the lobbying effort for R2P.

.... end part 1

Last edited by jmm99; 01-06-2012 at 07:44 PM.
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Old 01-06-2012   #18
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Default R2P - Politik (part 2)

2001's The Responsibility to Protect (Report of the International Commission on Intervention and State Sovereignty), provides the policy and political meat behind the 2005 UN statement:

Quote:
This report is about the so-called “right of humanitarian intervention”: the question of when, if ever, it is appropriate for states to take coercive – and in particular military – action, against another state for the purpose of protecting people at risk in that other state. ....

The Policy Challenge

External military intervention for human protection purposes has been controversial both when it has happened – as in Somalia, Bosnia and Kosovo – and when it has failed to happen, as in Rwanda. For some the new activism has been a long overdue internationalization of the human conscience; for others it has been an alarming breach of an international state order dependent on the sovereignty of states and the inviolability of their territory. For some, again, the only real issue is ensuring that coercive interventions are effective; for others, questions about legality, process and the possible misuse of precedent loom much larger.
...
At the United Nations General Assembly in 1999, and again in 2000, Secretary-General Kofi Annan made compelling pleas to the international community to try to find, once and for all, a new consensus on how to approach these issues, to “forge unity” around the basic questions of principle and process involved. He posed the central question starkly and directly:

Quote:
…if humanitarian intervention is, indeed, an unacceptable assault on sovereignty, how should we respond to a Rwanda, to a Srebrenica – to gross and systematic violations of human rights that affect every precept of our common humanity?
It was in response to this challenge that the Government of Canada, together with a group of major foundations, announced at the General Assembly in September 2000 the establishment of the International Commission on Intervention and State Sovereignty (ICISS). Our Commission was asked to wrestle with the whole range of questions – legal, moral, operational and political – rolled up in this debate, to consult with the widest possible range of opinion around the world, and to bring back a report that would help the Secretary-General and everyone else find some new common ground.
So, blame the Canucks !

The general policy principles are:

Quote:
The Responsibility to Protect: Core Principles

(1) Basic Principles

A. State sovereignty implies responsibility, and the primary responsibility for the protection of its people lies with the state itself.

B. Where a population is suffering serious harm, as a result of internal war, insurgency, repression or state failure, and the state in question is unwilling or unable to halt or avert it, the principle of non-intervention yields to the international responsibility to protect.

(2) Foundations

The foundations of the responsibility to protect, as a guiding principle for the international community of states, lie in:

A. obligations inherent in the concept of sovereignty;

B. the responsibility of the Security Council, under Article 24 of the UN Charter, for the maintenance of international peace and security;

C. specific legal obligations under human rights and human protection declarations, covenants and treaties, international humanitarian law and national law;

D. the developing practice of states, regional organizations and the Security Council itself.

(3) Elements

The responsibility to protect embraces three specific responsibilities:

A. The responsibility to prevent: to address both the root causes and direct causes of internal conflict and other man-made crises putting populations at risk.

B. The responsibility to react: to respond to situations of compelling human need with appropriate measures, which may include coercive measures like sanctions and international prosecution, and in extreme cases military intervention.

C. The responsibility to rebuild: to provide, particularly after a military intervention, full assistance with recovery, reconstruction and reconciliation, addressing the causes of the harm the intervention was designed to halt or avert.

(4) Priorities

A. Prevention is the single most important dimension of the responsibility to protect: prevention options should always be exhausted before intervention is contemplated, and more commitment and resources must be devoted to it.

B. The exercise of the responsibility to both prevent and react should always involve less intrusive and coercive measures being considered before more coercive and intrusive ones are applied.
So much for the standard "last resort" lead-in. Now, the military principles:

Quote:
The Responsibility to Protect: Principles for Military Intervention

(1) The Just Cause Threshold

Military intervention for human protection purposes is an exceptional and extraordinary measure. To be warranted, there must be serious and irreparable harm occurring to human beings, or imminently likely to occur, of the following kind:

A. large scale loss of life, actual or apprehended, with genocidal intent or not, which is the product either of deliberate state action, or state neglect or inability to act, or a failed state situation; or

B. large scale ‘ethnic cleansing’, actual or apprehended, whether carried out by killing, forced expulsion, acts of terror or rape.

(2) The Precautionary Principles

A. Right intention: The primary purpose of the intervention, whatever other motives intervening states may have, must be to halt or avert human suffering. Right intention is better assured with multilateral operations, clearly supported by regional opinion and the victims concerned.

B. Last resort: Military intervention can only be justified when every non-military option for the prevention or peaceful resolution of the crisis has been explored, with reasonable grounds for believing lesser measures would not have succeeded.

C. Proportional means: The scale, duration and intensity of the planned military intervention should be the minimum necessary to secure the defined human protection objective.

D. Reasonable prospects: There must be a reasonable chance of success in halting or averting the suffering which has justified the intervention, with the consequences of action not likely to be worse than the consequences of inaction.

(3) Right Authority

A. There is no better or more appropriate body than the United Nations Security Council to authorize military intervention for human protection purposes. The task is not to find alternatives to the Security Council as a source of authority, but to make the Security Council work better than it has.

B. Security Council authorization should in all cases be sought prior to any military intervention action being carried out. Those calling for an intervention should formally request such authorization, or have the Council raise the matter on its own initiative, or have the Secretary-General raise it under Article 99 of the UN Charter.

C. The Security Council should deal promptly with any request for authority to intervene where there are allegations of large scale loss of human life or ethnic cleansing. It should in this context seek adequate verification of facts or conditions on the ground that might support a military intervention.

D. The Permanent Five members of the Security Council should agree not to apply their veto power, in matters where their vital state interests are not involved, to obstruct the passage of resolutions authorizing military intervention for human protection purposes for which there is otherwise majority support.

E. If the Security Council rejects a proposal or fails to deal with it in a reasonable time, alternative options are:

I. consideration of the matter by the General Assembly in Emergency Special Session under the “Uniting for Peace” procedure; and

II. action within area of jurisdiction by regional or sub-regional organizations under Chapter VIII of the Charter, subject to their seeking subsequent authorization from the Security Council.

F. The Security Council should take into account in all its deliberations that, if it fails to discharge its responsibility to protect in conscience-shocking situations crying out for action, concerned states may not rule out other means to meet the gravity and urgency of that situation – and that the stature and credibility of the United Nations may suffer thereby.

(4) Operational Principles

A. Clear objectives; clear and unambiguous mandate at all times; and resources to match.

B. Common military approach among involved partners; unity of command; clear and unequivocal communications and chain of command.

C. Acceptance of limitations, incrementalism and gradualism in the application of force, the objective being protection of a population, not defeat of a state.

D. Rules of engagement which fit the operational concept; are precise; reflect the principle of proportionality; and involve total adherence to international humanitarian law.

E. Acceptance that force protection cannot become the principal objective.

F. Maximum possible coordination with humanitarian organizations.
The remaining 90 pages set out the authors' justification for these principles.

... end part 2
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Old 01-06-2012   #19
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Default R2P - Politik (part 3)

R2P has its own mentor, the International Coalition for the Responsibility to Protect, c/o World Federalist Movement - Institute for Global Policy, 708 Third Avenue, 24th Floor, New York, NY 10017.

The World Federalist Movement & its Institute for Global Policy are well known sponsers and lobbyists for a number of programs (I'm more familiar with their Coalition for the International Criminal Court):

Quote:
WFM-IGP Programs

Coalition for the International Criminal Court

International Coalition for the Responsibility to Protect

International Democratic Governance

Global Governance Roundups
The focus is obviously on governance - internationalistic, rather than nationalistic.

The International Coalition for the Responsibility to Protect is a broad front organization (going beyond WFM-IGP), as one gathers from its Membership List; and its push for NGOs to join.

And, of course, R2P has its proponents in organizations that are not members of the ICR2P - e.g., USIP; as to which, this article fairly reflects that group's general approval of R2P principles, Libya and the “Responsibility to Protect” (1 Mar 2011).

... end part 3

Regards

Mike
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Old 01-06-2012   #20
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Default JMM- legal question

Can R2P become the thread that draws us into future conflict much like the treaties between various states brought on WWI with the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria?
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