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Notre Dame Law School

War

International Law

2005

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When Is A War Not A War? The Myth Of The Global War On Terror, Mary Ellen O'Connell Jan 2005

When Is A War Not A War? The Myth Of The Global War On Terror, Mary Ellen O'Connell

Journal Articles

It is essential to correctly classify situations in the world as ones of war or peace: human lives depend on the distinction, but so do liberty, property, and the integrity of the natural environment. President Bush's war on terror finds war where suspected members of al Qaeda are found. By contrast, war under international law exists where hostilities are on-going. To the extent there is ambiguity, the United States should err on the side of pursuing terrorists within the peacetime criminal law enforcement paradigm, not a wartime one. Not only does the criminal law better protect important human rights and …