Counterterrorism and its Affronts to Human Rights
Since the 21st century, there has been a sharp rise in terrorism and counterterrorism measures that are an insult to both international and domestic human rights. This essay will attempt to define the intersection of counterterrorism and human rights and why it is important to either adapt existing norms or adopt new conceptions on the constraints to armed conflict. Global interconnectedness also called globalization is not only a phenomenon felt in the realms of economics and culture but is also keenly evident in armed conflict. Modern national security, non-state actors, and detention methods represent the cogs of conflict interconnectedness in the 21st century. Focusing on these three areas will show how counterterrorism is eroding the protection of human rights from outside and within, specifically in the United States of America (US), but also many other nations. Just as the arguments around regulating the effects of globalization are rather heated, so too is the discourse surrounding adaptation and innovation in the methods of counterterrorism. In referencing the current political climate in the US, this essay will conclude that the status quo for human rights will prevail if not become worse in time.
The failure of the United Nations (UN) Security Council (UNSC) to enact any meaningful response to the conflict in Syria is eroding not only life in Syria but the very foundation of international order. This report uses the Arab Spring conflicts which the conflict in Syria is a part of to talk about larger systemic problems in the UN framework. This report argues the responsibility to protect (R2P) needs to be utilized in Syria because it could end the violence and further entrench R2P as customary law. This report also argues that the permanency of the United States (US), the United Kingdom (UK), France, Russia and China in the UNSC, known as the P5, represents a lofty roadblock to fully realizing the R2P. As well, the P5 are halting the progression of human rights, state sovereignty, and a ceasing of bloodshed in Syria. Authoritative regimes are on the rise, and as soon as 2017 the international community could see three out of the five permanent seats of the UNSC governed by such regimes. The UNSC is in peril and needs broad reform if the UN desires to continue its hegemony in diplomacy. However, this report concludes the international community will not utilize the prescribed solutions because it would kill any legitimacy in the UNSC, albeit a decidedly false legitimacy.
Did we start the post-9/11 frenzy of military activity legally? Did the President and subsequent leaders follow the constitution of the United States of America? To many Americans, these types of questions surrounding the terrorist attack on 9/11 and legality cause an audience to squirm and fidget. Understandably so, post-9/11 military activity appears to be held to much more scrutiny and confusion than previous campaigns. This essay, however, is going to attempt to rationalize, defend and attack three main focal points of presidential authority post-9/11. Firsthand, the removal of the Taliban government in Afghanistan was legal and warranted after the incident on 9/11. Indefinite detention of alleged combatants is not legal and is not supported in the Authorization for Use of Military Force (S.J.Res.23). The final focal point is not nearly as straightforward as the previous two points. Drone technology places the President and US at a cross-roads in definition and accountability that could end up being quite dangerous. This essay posits the use of drone technology in Pakistan is legal simply because it is not illegal. Before making any argument, understanding the dialogue on authority and the debate surrounding these questions must be highlighted.