Unbound in War?: International Law in Canada and Britain’s Participation in the Korean War and Afghanistan

By Sean Richmond

© 2021

In Unbound in War?, Sean Richmond examines the influence and interpretation of international law in conflicts of force by two important but under-studied countries, Canada and Britain, during two of the most significant conflicts since 1945, namely the Korean War and the Afghanistan Conflict. Through an innovative application of sociological theories within International Relations (IR) and International Law (IL), and using qualitative analysis from declassified documents and original interviews, Unbound in War? delves into two arguments.

First, contrary to what some dominant IR perspectives might predict, international law can play many underappreciated roles in situations where force is used. The book discusses how IR helps constitute the identity of actors within these situations and also helps regulate conduct.

Secondly, Unbound in War? shows that while international law can play important roles even in "high politics" areas like armed conflict, it is unclear whether the effect is ultimately attributable to an obligatory quality in law. Looking at the Korean War and the Afghanistan conflict, the ground-breaking arguments presented in Unbound in War? promise to advance interdisciplinary debates in both IR and IL, and contribute to broader policy discussions in these fields.

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Product Details

  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 288 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.0in x 1.0in x 9.0in
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  • AVAILABLE JAN 2021

    From: $48.75

    Regular Price: $65.00

    ISBN 9781487503468
  • AVAILABLE JAN 2021

    From: $48.75

    Regular Price: $65.00

Quick Overview

This book tells the story of how two of America’s closest allies, Canada and Britain, have sought to reconcile their security concerns with their legal obligations during two of the most significant international conflicts since the Second World War.

Unbound in War?: International Law in Canada and Britain’s Participation in the Korean War and Afghanistan

By Sean Richmond

© 2021

In Unbound in War?, Sean Richmond examines the influence and interpretation of international law in conflicts of force by two important but under-studied countries, Canada and Britain, during two of the most significant conflicts since 1945, namely the Korean War and the Afghanistan Conflict. Through an innovative application of sociological theories within International Relations (IR) and International Law (IL), and using qualitative analysis from declassified documents and original interviews, Unbound in War? delves into two arguments.

First, contrary to what some dominant IR perspectives might predict, international law can play many underappreciated roles in situations where force is used. The book discusses how IR helps constitute the identity of actors within these situations and also helps regulate conduct.

Secondly, Unbound in War? shows that while international law can play important roles even in "high politics" areas like armed conflict, it is unclear whether the effect is ultimately attributable to an obligatory quality in law. Looking at the Korean War and the Afghanistan conflict, the ground-breaking arguments presented in Unbound in War? promise to advance interdisciplinary debates in both IR and IL, and contribute to broader policy discussions in these fields.

Continue Reading Read Less

Product Details

  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 288 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.0in x 1.0in x 9.0in
  • Author Information

    Sean Richmond is a lawyer and instructor in the Department of Law and Legal Studies at Carleton University.
  • Table of contents

    Acknowledgments

    1. Introduction
    Introduction
    Organization of the book

    2. Existing Literature, Research Design and Case Selection
    International law and the use of force
    Research design, method, and premises
    Case selection
      a) Why focus on Britain and Canada?
      b) Why focus on the Korean War and Afghanistan Conflict?

    3. Theoretical Framework
    Introduction
    How should we conceive of international law – as rules or process?
    International law in the study of international relations
      a) Realist approaches
      b) Neo-liberal institutionalism
      c) Constructivist perspectives
    The “interactional” approach
    Positing the four roles of international law in the use of force by states

    4. Britain and the Korean War
    Introduction
    Brief background to the Korean War
    Why Britain participated in the Korean War
    The four roles of international law in Britain’s use of force in Korea
      a) Constitutive
      b) Regulative
      c) Permissive and legitimating
      d) Structuring the development of new rules
    The understanding of international law in Britain’s use of force in Korea
      a) Britain’s interpretation of the Security Council resolutions on the Korean crisis
      b) Britain’s interpretation of Article 118 of the Geneva Convention on POWs
    Key findings

    5. Canada and the Korean War
    Introduction
    Why Canada participated in the Korean War
    The four roles of international law in Canada’s use of force in Korea
      a) Constitutive
      b) Regulative
      c) Permissive and legitimating
      d) Structuring the development of new rules
    The understanding of international law in Canada’s use of force in Korea
      a) Canada’s interpretation of the Security Council resolutions on the Korean crisis
      b) Canada’s interpretation of Article 118 of the Geneva Convention on POWs
    Key findings

    6. Britain and the Afghanistan Conflict
    Introduction
    Brief background to the Afghanistan Conflict
    The three phases of Britain’s military participation in the Afghanistan Conflict
    Why Britain participated in the Afghanistan Conflict
    The four roles of international law in Britain’s use of force in Afghanistan
      a) Constitutive
      b) Regulative
      c) Permissive and legitimating
      d) Structuring the development of new rules
    The understanding of international law in Britain’s use of force in Afghanistan
    a) Britain’s understanding of the UN Charter and NATO treaty
    b) Britain’s interpretation of international human rights law
    Key findings

    7. Canada and the Afghanistan Conflict
    Introduction
    The three phases of Canada’s military participation in the Afghanistan Conflict
    Why Canada participated in the Afghanistan Conflict
    The four roles of international law in Canada’s use of force in Afghanistan
      a) Constitutive
      b) Regulative
      c) Permissive and legitimating
      d) Structuring the development of new rules
    The understanding of international law in Canada’s use of force in Afghanistan
      a) Canada’s understanding of the NATO treaty and UN Charter
      b) Canada’s interpretation of the Geneva Convention on POWs
    Key findings
     
    8. Conclusion
    Summary of findings
    Significance of findings for theory and future research

    Bibliography
    Index

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