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John Bolton and the US Retreat from International Law

Haslam, Emily, Mansell, Wade (2005) John Bolton and the US Retreat from International Law. Social and Legal Studies, 14 (4). pp. 459-485. ISSN 0964-6639. E-ISSN 1461-7390. (doi:10.1177/0964663905057591) (KAR id:133)

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This article focuses upon the writings of John R. Bolton who was for four years US Under-Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security. He is currently the US Ambassador to the United Nations. His position with regard to international law is, at least for non-Americans, extraordinary, but also extraordinarily important since it resonates with the views of many in the current Bush administration. In essence, he is sceptical of the entire category of international law and argues that it cannot ever be accepted as superior to US domestic law. He doubts that it can be distinguished from international relations. These views need to be taken seriously if the implications for the world of diplomacy and international relations, and indeed domestic law, are to be understood. This the article attempts to do.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1177/0964663905057591
Additional information: Published version available at:
Uncontrolled keywords: John Bolton, exceptionalism, international law, neo-conservatives, United States Constitution
Subjects: K Law > K Law (General)
Divisions: Faculties > Social Sciences > Kent Law School
Depositing User: Katrin Steinack
Date Deposited: 19 Dec 2007 18:00 UTC
Last Modified: 23 Jan 2020 04:00 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
Haslam, Emily:
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