United Nations Law Making ; Cultural and Ideological Relativism and International Law Making for an Era of Transition

United Nations Law Making ; Cultural and Ideological Relativism and International Law Making for an Era of Transition

United Nations Law Making ; Cultural and Ideological Relativism and International Law Making for an Era of Transition

United Nations Law Making ; Cultural and Ideological Relativism and International Law Making for an Era of Transition

Excerpt

We live today in an era of transition in the world community, from an old system of world public order to a new one. What President de Gaulle characterized as the "postwar" era in international relations—bipolarity and the twin political-military blocs or alliances, dominated respectively by the Soviet Union and the United States—is clearly at an end, without, however, the main contours and directions of the new system of world public order that will replace it having yet become clear. From Cold War through coexistence to eventual détente, the patterns of post-1945 international relations had a certain predictability and comfortable assurance, since they were based upon two main players only, the Soviet Union and the United States, each of which was manifestly rational and also relatively conservative in its approach to international decision making. There was a sufficiency of shared values, at least in the peace-keeping area; and there was a common interest in maintaining the World War II political-military settlement, already agreed upon by the wartime Big Three at Yalta in February 1945, even before the war's end, and then confirmed at Potsdam in August 1945. Beyond that, there was a mutual understanding and ability to maintain one's basic interests in the legal-institutional machinery worked out at the Conference on International Organization at San Francisco in 1945, and incorporated in the resulting United Nations Charter. For, in its specific stipulations against the so-called enemy states in Articles 53 and 107 of the new charter, not less than in the special connotation given to "peace-loving states," which was the criterion of United Nations membership—in terms of Article 4 of the charter and in actual political-administrative practice in the early years of the new . . .

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