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The emergence of lawfare [infographic]

The security of individual nations and the wider world is protected through many means, force or diplomacy, culture or environment. Law is increasingly deployed as an alternative to military force, although its use dates back as far as international law itself. Even private sector and other non-governmental attorneys play a leading role in lawfare. So how did it develop? How are different countries taking advantage of it? And which groups are using it to achieve their goals? We explore these questions and more in an infographic based on Orde F. Kittrie’s Lawfare: Law as a Weapon of War.

Lawfare law as weapon of war infographics

Download the infographic in PDF or JPEG.

Image Credit: Photo by AJEL. CC0 Public Domain via Pixabay.

Recent Comments

  1. Gabriel Armas-Cardona

    I’m still not sold on the concept of lawfare. The development of international law takes years. It’s tactically useless and strategically questionable unless one is trying to engage legitimize a new strategy of war or delegitimize a future potential opponent’s strategy.

    Even some of the examples listed here don’t seem to fit the broad definition of “the use of law as a weapon of war.” Individuals (and cities or states acting as market participants and not engaging in policy making) boycotting certain countries hardly counts as using law. (In contrast, a law imposing boycotts, boycott bans or compulsory purchasing on a populace would qualify. But except for anti-BDS laws, I am not aware of any). Ditto with Lemkin creating the genocide convention or Palestine refraining from joining the ICC for 8 months as part of a deal.

    Ultimately, the real test of the concept of lawfare is whether it gains traction in any situation other than Israel Palestine. The globe map makes it seem like it has, but only in China. However, the chart gives no examples showing how China understands and utilizes the concept of lawfare.

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