Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Lubell: The Problem of Imminence in an Uncertain World

Noam Lubell (Univ. of Essex - Law) has posted The Problem of Imminence in an Uncertain World (in The Oxford Handbook of the Use of Force in International Law, M. Weller, forthcoming). Here's the abstract:
Almost any discussion of self-defence under international law inevitably includes the debate over anticipatory self-defence. This is true not only in modern writings, but also throughout the centuries of legal and philosophical examinations of the matter. Most arguments supporting anticipatory action invariably turn at some point to requiring a criterion of imminence, whether stating it specifically, or in another guise. Whether or not anticipatory self-defence should be allowed is a question that encompasses numerous legal, moral, and political conundrums. The current examination does not aim to resolve the wider debate on anticipatory self-debate. Rather, it focuses on one particular and crucial component of the debate: the concept of imminence. The following examination proceeds, therefore, on the assumption that anticipatory self-defence may be a legitimate option for action. Based on this premise, it sets out to analyse the meaning of imminence in this context, how it is to be interpreted, what it might justify and what it might exclude, and whether it is in fact a criterion that can be upheld in light of modern challenges.