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University of Michigan Law School

Treaties

2008

International Humanitarian Law

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Hacking Into International Humanitarian Law: The Principles Of Distinction And Neutrality In The Age Of Cyber Warfare, Jeffrey T.G. Kelsey Jan 2008

Hacking Into International Humanitarian Law: The Principles Of Distinction And Neutrality In The Age Of Cyber Warfare, Jeffrey T.G. Kelsey

Michigan Law Review

Cyber warfare is an emerging form of warfare not explicitly addressed by existing international law. While most agree that legal restrictions should apply to cyber warfare, the international community has yet to reach consensus on how international humanitarian law ("IHL") applies to this new form of conflict. After providing an overview of the global Internet structure and outlining several cyber warfare scenarios, this Note argues that violations of the traditional principles of distinction and neutrality are more likely to occur in cyber warfare than in conventional warfare. States have strong incentives to engage in prohibited cyber attacks, despite the risk ...