The Danzig Corridor

Discussions on all aspects of Poland during the Second Polish Republic and the Second World War. Hosted by Piotr Kapuscinski.
ljadw
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Re: The Danzig Corridor

Post by ljadw » 19 Jul 2022 05:31

wm wrote:
18 Jul 2022 22:06
ljadw wrote:
17 Jul 2022 18:05
1969,1970 ,etc have nothing to do with what happened before ww2 .
Although I didn't say that.

But of course, much earlier examples are easy to find:
the pacta doctrine is of divine origin in the Islamic legal tradition. It is an obligatory command of Allaah and a sacred practice (Sunnah) of the Prophet.
It is part and parcel of the faith (Iman) of the Muslims. Allaah has commanded them to fulfill their promises and thereby to uphold their faith and to render justice to others. Otherwise, punishment will follow both in this world and hereafter. So believers must keep their promises of all sorts, including international treaties unless they are against Shari’ah law. The Prophet has set the best examples of keeping promises by truly acting upon the command of Allaah. He honored treaties with other nations even at the expense of strategic disadvantages, humiliation, and perils to his community (Ummah). He kept his treaties until their agreed time limit had expired despite his and Muslim community’s unquestionable power and authority after the conquest of Makkaah.
...
As a consequence, it may be said that Islam perceives the pacta doctrine as a sacred principle of faith, religion, and law. The principle has emanated from Allaah, and the prophet has implemented it in the real-life situation setting examples for the Muslims and for the people at large.
Pacta Sunt Servanda: Islamic Perception by Anowar Zahid, Rohimi Shapiee
In Europe similar ideas were advanced by Henry of Segusio (+1272), John Wycliffe (+1384), Hugo Grotius (+1625).
1 You gave examples from the 1960s,but these are irrelevant for what happened before ww2
2 That the Islam perceives the pacta doctrine as a sacred principe of faith,religion and law is irrelevant :the discussion is about the use of the pacta doctrine in international politics
3 That Grotius advanced similar ideas does not mean that these ideas were accepted and used in international politics .
4 To use such ideas in international politics is suicidal .
5 US ,France,Turkey and Britain intervened /intervene in the domestic affairs of Libya and Syria,against the will of the legal government of these countries ,by doing this they violated the principles of the UNO which imposed the notion of non interference .
6 US and the Soviets did the same in Afghanistan,Iran, Ukraine ,etc...
7 The Turkish, Iranian, Russian, US secret services are chasing,kidnapping and killing domestic opponents in Europe,violating the sovereignty of the European countries and the principles of the UNO which they voluntarily accepted .

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wm
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Re: The Danzig Corridor

Post by wm » 19 Jul 2022 14:29

The authors wrote, "believers must keep their promises of all sorts, including international treaties."
Of course the ideas were accepted; Henry of Segusio (a cardinal bishop and chaplain to the pope) was a well-known canonist.

That sometimes "pacta sunt servanda" is ignored doesn't invalidate the principle. After all, murders don't invalidate "thou shalt not kill."
It's hard to live in a world where murders are legal, and agreements don't have to be kept.

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Re: The Danzig Corridor

Post by gebhk » 20 Jul 2022 08:28

Hi WM - your 'thou shalt not kill' analogy is well taken. The relevant issue, however, is that perhaps the reason we don't have piles of corpses in the streets is not because all of us have strong moral standards but because virtually every country has laws preventing you from murdering your neighbours and, more importantly, those laws are enforced. And I don't think anyone would disagree that when that enforcement is weak, the murder rate rises - in other words, many people will kill if they think they can get away with it. You say that it's hard to live in a world where murders are legal - and that is of course true, but how much that impacts on policy depends on the status/power of those thus inconvenienced. It is not that long since, in many parts of Europe, while killing someone was illegal, the penalty if the victim was a social inferior was to pay the victim's family compensation. As a peasant's life was cheap (incidentally the very origins of this common phrase), a stab in the guts with a sword was a convenient and relatively cheap (and therefore not that infrequently used) method of resolving difficulties lords may have had with uppity peasants. And by and large everyone knows who the killers in the community are.

I would suggest much the same principles apply to treaties, whether between individuals or countries. They are only as good as they remain mutually beneficial or, in the alternative, they can be enforced. There is therefore some justification for the saying that treaties have to be kept only by small contries. And by 1936 only the utterly deluded could have believed that anything AH signed was worth the paper it was written on unless it could be enforced at the muzzle of a gun.

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wm
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Re: The Danzig Corridor

Post by wm » 20 Jul 2022 21:16

Yes, it's easy to kill in a lawless society. Still, it's equally easy to get killed in revenge, especially if a mob of unencumbered by legal considerations necklacing aficionados arrive at the scene.
That something is easy doesn't mean it happens frequently. Manners are good when one may have to back up his acts with his life.

Social groups, even the most primitive ones, instinctively value good behavior and honesty. It's good for everybody and gives them a political advantage over those that don't.

I don't believe that treaties have to be kept only by small countries. They especially have to be kept by great powers because when they don't, it demonstrates their weakness.

But "pacta sunt servanda" wasn't absolute. It could be terminated by "clausula rebus sic stantibus" (because of a fundamental change of circumstances.) This happened to Czechoslovakia (1938) and Poland (1945).

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Piotr Kapuscinski
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Re: The Danzig Corridor

Post by Piotr Kapuscinski » 21 Jul 2022 00:17

ljadw wrote:
16 Jul 2022 16:23
Pacta sunt servanda is a 19th/20th century invention from Anglo-Saxon lawyers
No it is not, it originates at least from the ancient Roman law, or even "since times immemorial" as they write here:

https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals ... B429FA2361

^^^ Quote:

"The norm pacta sunt servanda, which has constituted “since times immemorial the axiom, postulate and categorical imperative of the science of international law” and has very rarely been denied on principle, is undoubtedly a positive norm of general international law."

This excerpt above is written in the context of international law, not private law.
ljadw wrote:
16 Jul 2022 16:23
Before the partitions,Poland had conquered, by force!, a lot of territories
Hardly any territories had been conquered by Poland by force. As user wm already wrote, most of the territories joined willingly.

Can you post a list of these territories you have in mind here?
ljadw wrote:
16 Jul 2022 16:23
Pacta sunt servanda is something that can be used in private law, not in politics .
Pacta sund servanda is a principle of international law and it not only can, but must be used in politics too.

Of course there are countries and their leaders who violate agreements and disregard principles such as this.

Such people and such countries should be punished for their violations. Otherwise, we will never be able to sleep without having nightmares about a nuclear apocalypse because some madman dictators are threatening everyone with nuclear weapons in the 21st century?

I hope you agree that countries and their leaders who violate agreements deserve to be punished by the international community.
There are words which carry the presage of defeat. Defence is such a word. What is the result of an even victorious defence? The next attempt of imposing it to that weaker, defender. The attacker, despite temporary setback, feels the master of situation.

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Re: The Danzig Corridor

Post by ljadw » 21 Jul 2022 06:48

Piotr Kapuscinski wrote:
21 Jul 2022 00:17
ljadw wrote:
16 Jul 2022 16:23
Pacta sunt servanda is a 19th/20th century invention from Anglo-Saxon lawyers
No it is not, it originates at least from the ancient Roman law, or even "since times immemorial" as they write here:

https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals ... B429FA2361

^^^ Quote:

"The norm pacta sunt servanda, which has constituted “since times immemorial the axiom, postulate and categorical imperative of the science of international law” and has very rarely been denied on principle, is undoubtedly a positive norm of general international law."

This excerpt above is written in the context of international law, not private law.
ljadw wrote:
16 Jul 2022 16:23
Before the partitions,Poland had conquered, by force!, a lot of territories
Hardly any territories had been conquered by Poland by force. As user wm already wrote, most of the territories joined willingly.

Can you post a list of these territories you have in mind here?
ljadw wrote:
16 Jul 2022 16:23
Pacta sunt servanda is something that can be used in private law, not in politics .
Pacta sund servanda is a principle of international law and it not only can, but must be used in politics too.

Of course there are countries and their leaders who violate agreements and disregard principles such as this.

Such people and such countries should be punished for their violations. Otherwise, we will never be able to sleep without having nightmares about a nuclear apocalypse because some madman dictators are threatening everyone with nuclear weapons in the 21st century?

I hope you agree that countries and their leaders who violate agreements deserve to be punished by the international community.
1 What an American Journal of International Law is saying has no importance for Europe .
2 What it says is also hypocrisy :think on the actions of the CIA throughout the whole world .
3 That most of the territories joined willingly is not serious as every one knows that before the 19th Century,the rulers did not care about the wish of the population . You know of the dictum :cuius regio,illius religio : the religion of the ruler dictated the religion of the ruled ? Did the inhabitants of Kiew, Smolensk and Minsk say that they wanted to be a part of Poland ? The members of the OUN did not say that they wanted to be a part of Poland, and what about the inhabitants of Danzig, Breslau ,Vilnius ,those of the Alsace,of South Tirol ,.....
4 There is no such thing as the International Community : International Community is only an other word for countries with a liberal capitalist ideology who want to dictate the rest of the world what they must do .
5 Can you give ONE example of a madman dictator who was threatening everyone with nuclear weapons in the 21st century ?
Putin is not an example as
1 he is a dictator but not a madman :no psychiatrist has labeled him as a madman .
2 he did not threaten Belgium with nuclear weapons ,neither was threatened Poland, Germany, etc ..
I have no nightmares
6 The only country that used a nuclear weapon ,and its use was justified, is now saying that no one can use a nuclear weapon .

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Re: The Danzig Corridor

Post by gebhk » 21 Jul 2022 09:51

What an American Journal of International Law is saying has no importance for Europe
It is entirely of relevance when it adresses a matter of historical fact as in this case - so please Ijadw play the ball not the player. The only thing of relevance is whether it is correct. And evidently it is. The concept named in the middle ages as 'pacta sunt servanda' can be easily traced to at least the Digesta Justiniana of 528-534 AD, these being an antology of the works of jurists going back to the 1st century BC. It has been seen as an integral component of international law since at least the Treaty of London 1871 (which, before you spout more embarassing nonsense about 'Anglo-saxon lawyers', involved Germany, Austria, Turkey, France, Russia, and Italy as well as the UK).

Thus it was not a
19th/20th century invention from Anglo-Saxon lawyers, thus after the partitions of Poland
as you claim, but a middle-ages invention of European lawyers with antecedents going back to, at least, Roman Law.

In short, you made something up, I can only assume on the spur of the moment, it is blatantly incorrect so let's all accept that and move on; preferably back to 'The Danzig Corridor'.

Hi WM
Social groups, even the most primitive ones, instinctively value good behavior and honesty.
I rather suspect that you are speaking from a position of your own culture. What the bulk of what you probably refer to as 'primitive' societies valued, we can at best guess at from archeological evidence. What is 'good behaviour'? And even from the perspective of our own societal norms, I am sure that if I greeted an acquaintance with: 'good morning Mrs Jones - you look particularly ugly and repellent this morning', my transparent honesty would not be valued by Mrs Jones or anyone else, for that matter. Indeed some forms of honesty are deemed illegal or even criminal. Huge can of worms, probably best left alone.
I don't believe that treaties have to be kept only by small countries. They especially have to be kept by great powers because when they don't, it demonstrates their weakness.
I would suggest that this argument goes into the 'mutually beneficial' bracket. Being seen as a scrupulous keeper of treaties may well be avantageous. The point I was making is that that is a potential benefit we choose to take into account. The question is what happens when countries don't care what they look like in this respect? Put another way what happens when the benefits of breaking a treaty outweigh the benefits of keeping it (including the benefit of not appearing weak)? And the answer, alas, is that the small contries can have treaty obligations forced upon them - while big and powerful ones can thumb their noses at enforcement.

It is probably also worth adding that - and here your analogy to murder is really valuable - being known for being an uscrupulous and murderous psychopath can also be advantageous in many lines of business. After all that is the basis of the worldwide phenomenon of protection rackets - a description, which at not that big a stretch can even be applied to states, all of which extort money from you in taxes (try refusing to pay them!) to provide police to protect you from your less scrupulous neighbours and armed forces to protect you from the nefarious intentions of other countries. If you refuse to pay your protection money, by refusing to pay taxes, those same forces of the state will take away your property and likely do all sorts of unpleasant things to you - which is exactly how every other protection racket works 8O . Be that as it may, and to return to our topic, the reputation AH acquired for himself as an unscrupulous, belligerent and dangerous thug allowed him to get away with a great deal of stuff before WW2 finally broke out, which he never would have done had he politely complied with Germany's treaty obligations.
Last edited by gebhk on 21 Jul 2022 19:17, edited 2 times in total.

ljadw
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Re: The Danzig Corridor

Post by ljadw » 21 Jul 2022 15:18

gebhk wrote:
21 Jul 2022 09:51
What an American Journal of International Law is saying has no importance for Europe
It is entirely of relevance when it adresses a matter of historical fact as in this case - so please Ijadw play the ball not the player. The only thing of relevance is whether it is correct. And evidently it is. The concept named in the middle ages as 'pacta sunt servanda' can be easily traced to at least the Digesta Justiniana of 528-534 AD, these being an antology of the works of jurists going back to the 1st century BC. It has been seen as an integral component of international law since at least the Treaty of London 1871 (which, before you spout more embarassing nonsense about 'Anglo-saxon lawyers', involved Germany, Austria, Turkey, France, Russia, and Italy as well as the UK).

Thus it was not a
19th/20th century invention from Anglo-Saxon lawyers, thus after the partitions of Poland
as you claim, but a middle-ages invention of European lawyers with antecedents going back to, at least, Roman Law.

In short, you made something up, I can only assume on the spur of the moment, it is blatantly incorrect so let's all accept that and move on; preferably back to 'The Danzig Corridor'.

Hi WM
Social groups, even the most primitive ones, instinctively value good behavior and honesty.
I rather suspect that you are speaking from a position of your own culture. What the bulk of what you probably refer to as 'primitive' societies valued, we can at best guess at from archeological evidence. What is 'good behaviour'? And even from the perspective of our own societal norms, I am sure that if I greeted an acquaintance with: 'good morning Mrs Jones - you look particularly ugly and repellent this morning', my transparent honesty would not be valued by Mrs Jones or anyone else, for that matter. Indeed some forms of honesty are deemed illegal or even criminal. Huge can of worms, probably best left alone.
I don't believe that treaties have to be kept only by small countries. They especially have to be kept by great powers because when they don't, it demonstrates their weakness.
I would suggest that this argument goes into the 'mutually beneficial' bracket. Being seen as a scrupulous keeper of treaties may well be avantageous. The point I was making is that that is a potential benefit we choose to take into account. The question is what happens when countries don't care what they look like in this respect? And the answer, alas, is that the small contries can have treaty obligations forced upon them - while big and powerful ones can thumb their noses at enforcement.

It is probably also worth adding that - and here your analogy to murder is really valuable - being known for being an uscrupulous and murderous psychopath can also be advantageous in many lines of business. After all that is the basis of the worldwide phenomenon of protection rackets - a description, which at not that big a stretch can even be applied to states, all of which extort money from you in taxes (try refusing to pay them!) to provide police to protect you from your less scrupulous neighbours and armed forces to protect you from the nefarious intentions of other countries. Be that as it may, and to return to our topic, the reputation AH acquired for himself as an unscrupulous, belligerent and dangerous thug allowed him to get away with a great deal of stuff before WW2 finally broke out, which he never would have done had he politely complied with Germany's treaty obligations.
American lawyers can not dictate the foreign policy of European states.
No one was in the Middle Ages observing the concept ''pacta sunt servanda '' because it was so that in the real world ,no one cared about pieces of paper,about rights ,only power was important .
And is it much different today ?
A few decades ago the majority of the members of UN,all countries who were doing blabla about human rights and treaties,were dictatorships,where human rights had no value at all .
I am sure that there is somewhere a treaty that forbids aggressive wars , but who cares about these things ?
Israel did not care in 1956 and 1967
Turkey not in 1975 and not today :the Turkish air force has today attacked places in Iraq. And I forget : even today the secret police of Turkey ( NATO member ) is chasing and kidnapping political opponents living outside Turkey,although there are treaties that forbid such things .
And Britain and France ? : France kidnapped political opponents who lived outside France, Napoleon,still venerated as the founder of the liberal order,ordered to kill them.
Lawyers live in an ivory tower and no one pays attention to what they say .
What happened in 1937 in Nanking ( 40000- 300000 Chinese civilians murdered by the Japanese ) was also a violation of some treaty, but FDR continued to sell Japan the weapons,ammunition and oil to kill the Chinese .
And the country of lawyers (US ) : 60 years ago, Lemnitzer proposed to create false flag operations ( something as 9/11,but to be done by the CIA ) in the US and to use them as justification for an invasion of Cuba . No one was punished for the proposal of operation Northwoods .
There were no serious sanctions when the Soviets invaded Afghanistan ,when Zaire was invaded by its neighbors ,when US bombed Libyan and Syrian cities, etc....
And to finish : do you believe that Rome never violated the treaties they signed with other countries ?
To violate treaties is business as usual .Everyone is doing it and everyone blames the other when he violates treaties .
Treaties are not made to be observed, but they are made to be violated .
Pacta sunt violata, non servanda .
That's the real world .

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Re: The Danzig Corridor

Post by gebhk » 21 Jul 2022 19:09

All this 'blabla', to quote your saying, is irrelevant diversion from the fact that you said pacta sunt servanda was a
19th/20th century invention from Anglo-Saxon lawyers, thus after the partitions of Poland
and that, in this, you were demonstrably wrong. The 'blabla' instead of any cogent argument or evidence to support your theory, merely tells us you know that you were wrong.

So let's just move on.

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K

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Piotr Kapuscinski
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Re: The Danzig Corridor

Post by Piotr Kapuscinski » 22 Jul 2022 00:06

Ljadw,

"Lawyers live in an ivory tower and no one pays attention to what they say"

This is unfortunately true, but this is due to the moral inferiority of non-lawyers compared to lawyers (on average). Which is why I think that some subjects from law schools - such as Practical Logic and Theory & Philosophy of Law - should be obligatory subjects for all high school kids, not just for students of law schools.
There are words which carry the presage of defeat. Defence is such a word. What is the result of an even victorious defence? The next attempt of imposing it to that weaker, defender. The attacker, despite temporary setback, feels the master of situation.

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Re: The Danzig Corridor

Post by ljadw » 22 Jul 2022 05:32

Piotr Kapuscinski wrote:
22 Jul 2022 00:06
Ljadw,

"Lawyers live in an ivory tower and no one pays attention to what they say"

This is unfortunately true, but this is due to the moral inferiority of non-lawyers compared to lawyers (on average). Which is why I think that some subjects from law schools - such as Practical Logic and Theory & Philosophy of Law - should be obligatory subjects for all high school kids, not just for students of law schools.
The world would be a better world if lawyers would not meddle in international politics .
And that lawyers are morally superior to non -lawyers is a joke : lawyers do as everyone : work for a living .
A lawyer has no opinions, his wallet decides his opinions .
When Hitler was ruling, German lawyers were justifying what he did , when the communist ruled the DDR, the East German lawyers justified the killings of people who tried to escape from the paradise of workers and peasants.
And, let's not talk about the close ties between lawyers and politicians,and the attempt of the crime lobby (lawyers, politicians, sociologists ) to give criminals impunity .
There were also lawyers in the Einsatzgruppen .
Homo homini lupus .
The more power for lawyers,the less power for the police, the more liberty for criminals .

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