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'.
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 .