International Tribunals, Past and Future

International Tribunals, Past and Future

International Tribunals, Past and Future

International Tribunals, Past and Future

Excerpt

The upheaval produced by a world conflict has again confronted public opinion with the necessity of reexamining the basic institutions of world society, and the generation which is bearing the brunt of the present struggle may seize the opportunity to reshape many of those institutions for the better serving of future needs. If any attempt is to be made to forge new directions for international law, attention will doubtless be given to some remodelling and adaptation of international judicial institutions. It seems important, therefore, that serious effort should be given to appraising the tribunals which have recently existed in the world, and to assessing the rôle which tribunals may be expected to play when law and order are reestablished.

The nineteenth century was marked by a continuous development of international arbitration, and the progress achieved led to attempts in the twentieth century to perfect agencies for arbitration and adjudication. The Permanent Court of Arbitration, organized as the century began, survived the War of 1914, and it continues to exist today. When the Permanent Court of International Justice was created in 1920, its Statute was largely based on the conceptions which had previously come to prevail. If further extension of the judicial process in international affairs is now to be undertaken, it will give greater promise of success if full account is taken of the experience of the past and of the lessons which emerge from that experience. We do not start with a clean slate, and the preservation of continuity with the past may be our best guarantee of moving along useful lines for the future.

This volume is not a history of international tribunals, and it is not a treatise on the pacific settlement of international disputes. It essays the less ambitious rôle of summarizing the past . . .

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