What should be done if there are no obvious battlefields and no certain combatants? Should propagandists be treated as fighters? Are any procedural protections required before a U.S. citizen can be killed?
Despite all the pieces of national legislation that have been introduced in recent years the heart of the issue is that most PMSC exist to operate somewhere outside the country they are headquartered in. That makes then an international, not a national legal issue.
Writer Enoh Meyomesse landed in Yaounde, Cameroon after a trip to Singapore on November 22. As he deplaned, the national police detained him, searched his belongings, and accused him of stealing gold as part of a sophisticated coup d'état against President Paul Biya.
It's easy to say that dictators, tyrants or terrorists are guilty and deserve to be shot. It is important to remember, however, that we no longer live in an age where we can summarily execute those who are responsible for the gravest of atrocities.
As if we didn't have enough wars already, a battle is now reportedly taking place within the Obama administration over whether the U.S. government has the legal authority to kill low-level suspected terrorist supporters where the U.S. now has troops on the ground.
The Gaza flotilla is not about delivering "goods" to transform Israel's siege into a kinder, gentler blockade. Rather, it is to deliver this question: By what right does Israel besiege Gaza? And this answer: None, under international law.
There will always be Democrats who will sell out to corporate interests and compromise. However, when it comes to such blatant affronts to international legal norms as those exemplified by Netanyahu's speech, it is time to draw the line.
In the famous ticking time bomb hypothetical, it is moral to torture one person in order to save the lives of thousands, that the right to life trumps the right to physical integrity and security. This is a false construct.
Are Abu Ghraib torture victims entitled to compensation? Not one victim of official cruelty in U.S. custody has had access to an enforceable, effective remedy because the government has argued that allowing these claims to be heard would endanger national security.
If bin Laden had been captured and tried in a fair and transparent process, the facts of the case could have been discussed, a historical record created, more information may have emerged and individuals who lost loved ones could have testified.