Thanks to a once-obscure law passed in 1789, foreign victims of foreign human rights abusers can use U.S. courts to sue their abusers. But the Supreme Court may soon ban such suits. That would be a shame, since they offer victims some measure of solace and give substance to underenforced human rights laws. The law should be upheld, and other countries should follow the U.S. lead.
The International Criminal Court looks set to begin its first-ever trial involving a case of child soldiers in the Congo, while in neighboring Uganda, calls for the Court to drop its indictments have called its authority into question.
The European Union scolds Serbia for its inability—some would say refusal—to hand over Ratko Mladic, the disgraced Bosnian Serb military leader and indicted war criminal who has eluded capture for over a decade.
Former Liberian president and strongman Charles Taylor has been taken to Sierra Leone under UN custody to face war crimes proceedings. His case will be watched closely on a continent where predatory leaders are rarely held accountable for their crimes.
Speakers: John B. Bellinger III and David J. Scheffer Presider: Jeffrey Toobin
Ambassador David Scheffer and former State Department legal adviser John Bellinger discuss how international justice over the last two decades has affected international politics, including the U.S. role in assisting local war crimes prosecutions in Libya and elsewhere.
The Council on Foreign Relations' David Rockefeller Studies Program—CFR's "think tank"—is home to more than seventy full-time, adjunct, and visiting scholars and practitioners (called "fellows"). Their expertise covers the world's major regions as well as the critical issues shaping today's global agenda. Download the printable CFR Experts Guide.
The authors argue that the United States has responded inadequately to the rise of Chinese power and recommend placing less strategic emphasis on the goal of integrating China into the international system and more on balancing China's rise.
Campbell evaluates the implications of the Boko Haram insurgency and recommends that the United States support Nigerian efforts to address the drivers of Boko Haram, such as poverty and corruption, and to foster stronger ties with Nigerian civil society.
Koblentz argues that the United States should work with other nuclear-armed states to manage threats to nuclear stability in the near term and establish processes for multilateral arms control efforts over the longer term.
Learn more about CFR’s mission and its work over the past year in the 2014 Annual Report. The Annual Report spotlights new initiatives, high-profile events, and authoritative scholarship from CFR experts, and includes a message from CFR President Richard N. Haass. Read and download »