Over a century ago, a precursor to the International Court of Justice, usually called the World Court, was created. The United States had an important role in founding the Court, and a U.S. citizen-Andrew Carnegie-funded the Peace Palace, the building in which the World Court still convenes. But in 1985, during the second Reagan-Bush Administration, the U.S. effectively withdrew its support and authority from the Court in respose to its ruling on the U.S. use of force in Nicaragua. Since that time, the role of the World Court has grown in importance internationally even though the U.S. refuses to participate fully. And because the U.S. role has been so attenuated, the full story of the World Court has not been told, especially to U.S. citizens and students whose ignorance of it is a national embarrassment. Howard N. Meyer-longtime legal authority, activist, and champion of untold or misunderstood histories-traces the World Court all the way back to The Hague Conference of 1899 and shows its development through World War I, the League of Nations, World War II, and the Cold War, all the way up to the contemporary challenges of East Timor and Kosovo. More recently, Meyer distinguishes between the nation-state oriented work of the World Court and the work of the International Criminal Court which was proposed in 1998 to prosecute individual war criminals like Milosevic and others coming out of the conflicts in the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda. As different as they are, the World Court and the ICC have a common problem that this book seeks to address: resistance in Washington to the international rule of law, especially when it comes to authority surrounding the use of force.
Howard N. Meyer is a lawyer and a well-regarded social historian of major epochs and emblematic political actors within them. His book, The Amendment That Refused to Die, was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize. Among his many writings on the Vietnam War, one is credited with stimulating action on the part of U.S. university presidents against the Nixon policies in Indochina. He is author of numerous books and articles on human rights and peace law, and history. He has sought to revive the respect deserved by Ulysses S. Grant, Charles Sumner, Thaddeus Stevens, and others. Recently in The Magnificent Activist he has continued an effort to restore the life and work of Thomas Wentworth Higginson to our nation's memory.
Chapter 1 Foreword Chapter 2 Preface Chapter 3 Prologue Chapter 4 A Century Ends, an Effort Begins Chapter 5 Onward Movement until a Tragic Halt Chapter 6 Not a Whole World's Court Chapter 7 The Part World Court Functions Chapter 8 Judging "Between the Nations" Begins Chapter 9 A Palace as a Court House Chapter 10 The Court's Second Coming Chapter 11 Advice about the UN Charter and Others Chapter 12 Transnational Force and Global Law Chapter 13 Transnational Force: Iran and Nicaragua Chapter 14 Some New International Law: Namibia and Decolonization Chapter 15 Contesting Ownership on Land and at Sea Chapter 16 Some Unfinished Business Chapter 17 Reparations: Nicaragua and Iran Chapter 18 Court versus Council Chapter 19 Was It "Worth the Trouble"? Chapter 20 Rounding Out the Century Chapter 21 To Court to Ban the Bomb? Chapter 22 Sources and Suggestions: A Bibliography Chapter 23 Chronology Chapter 24 Index