Macfarlane Et Al's View on the Case That Humanitarian Intervention Is an Unacceptable Assault on Sovereignty

1986 WordsDec 19, 20128 Pages
MacFarlane et al’s View on the Case that Humanitarian Intervention is an Unacceptable Assault on Sovereignty By Euan Brady For quite some time now the question of whether humanitarian intervention is an unacceptable assault on sovereignty has been at the top of the list of priority questions for international relations professors. In 2004 Neil MacFarlane, a professor of international relations, Carolin J Thielking, a doctoral candidate in international relations, and Thomas G Weiss, the director of the Ralph Bunch Institute for International Studies, gathered together to review the question of whether anyone cares about humanitarian intervention anymore. Central to their argument was the ‘responsibility to protect’ idea, and the effect…show more content…
The last group are the optimists who support the ICISS report. They believe that the report is the best and most realistic option for the long term. They believe the report has the greatest possibility of solving the sovereignty versus intervention debate. UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan has credited the report with taking away the last excuse for states to not intervene, when doing so would save lives. In conclusion the optimists generally agree with every aspect of the report. (MacFarlane et al, 2004, p.981). MacFarlane et al fall into the optimists group. In other words they believe that humanitarian intervention is not an unacceptable assault on sovereignty. Despite this MacFarlane et al still believe that human intervention must only be undertaken when all of the criteria necessary for intervention, based on the ICISS’s report, have been fulfilled. There are a number of criteria that must be fulfilled before intervention can take place. Firstly the intervener’s intention must be based on averting or stopping human suffering. Secondly the intervention must be authorized by the UN Security Council. (MacFarlane et al, 2004, p.978). The other criteria stress that all non-military intervention has been considered before military intervention; that the level of intervention be proportionate to the task at hand; and that the task must have a good chance of success. (MacFarlane et al, 2004, p.979). Another central theme of

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