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February 2009: Proportionality and Human Rights in War

Introduction to the Month's Focal PieceAnnotation of

“Proportional to What?” The Economist. December 30, 2008.

~ The Editors




Clair ApodacaProtecting Human Rights in Conflict
by Clair Apodaca

“It is difficult to get parties to a conflict to see the benefits of respecting human rights and humanitarian law principles while in the heat of battle. This is precisely why the international community needs to step in. The international community should demand that both principles of discrimination and proportionality be respected.”


Edward FriedmanStopping the Killing and/or Stopping Human Rights Violations
by Edward Friedman

"It is not obvious that singularly emphasizing a human rights approach to the conflict brings the day of peace closer. The big issue is a political compromise so people can live in peace with each other. It is not the human rights or wrongs of some battle that should be decisive."


Emma GilliganProportional to Life...
by Emma Gilligan

"The question that should ultimately sit at the foreground of this debate on proportionality is to what degree this issue should be considered in light of international humanitarian law."

Sarah StanlickProportionality and Unjust Wars
by Sarah Stanlick

“Negating the inhumane elements of war does not mean that war is ever perfect or preferable. But it does ensure that the innocent are protected, and the human rights of combatants and non-combatants alike are sacrosanct despite the chaos."


Christien van den Anker Healing from War to End all Wars
by Christien van den Anker

“Human rights discourse is not free of the tendency to blame even if the starting-point of the human rights doctrine is equality and respect for the dignity of all peoples."

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