Koskenniemi's Argument Analysis

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I would like to preface by stating that any of my concerns or questions are merely for arguments’ sake (I struggled to find anything controversial or worthy of objections), as the article is generally straightforward and logically sound. I would like to discuss the following (all of which do not pose any serious problems for Koskenniemi): 1) that consensualism is not necessarily theoretically inconsistent, or that; 2) its inconsistencies does not make it useless in practice; 3) that apologism may be less of a problem that it is depicted; and 4) that the extent of the integration of law and social science in the context of international law might be too much.
Notions of Non-Consensualism as a Part of Consent
The article listed two
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In fact, the authenticity of consent is often difficult to gauge, especially in the case of less powerful countries, where coerced-induced consent can be hard to detect. However, while my interpretation of consent might not satisfy Koskenniemi’s criticisms of the supposed theoretical inconsistencies of pure consensualism (where it needs non-consensual elements), I do not think that it gives enough cause for consensualism to be declared as defunct in practice. While I am not well-versed in international law cases, it appears to me that tacit consent remains an integral part of international relations and contracts. That is to say, while consensualism is undoubtedly a theory (and a flawed one), it is also an actual practice that is often effectively …show more content…
There exists the sentiment that there must be normativity to international law, that is, that there needs to be “distance between it and actual state behaviour, will, or interest.” On the other hand, too much distance from politics seems to propel law to the theoretical realm, of which lacks concreteness. From my understanding, Koskenniemi is of the opinion (of which I am in agreement with) that completely extracting politics from international law is impossible. The concern however, is that concreteness without normativity will result in apologism. I wonder however, if this can be negated by the state’s self-interests. For example, besides extreme cases, most countries opt to work together and abide by shared agreements. This, I believe, is because of the fact that the countries recognize the advantages of doing so in the long run, where cooperation outweighs short term egoistic benefits. In addition, the domination of one state’s interest over another can be avoided simply because the conflict of interests between two states will ensure that the final agreement reached will be “fair”. This I admit however, is an idealized view that overlooks the power differences between states (especially the reality that western/developed nations hold much more power than their counterparts). The point is, to work closely

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