Current Issue

  • Volume 34,
  • Number 2 -
  • Spring 2024


Facing Up to Internet Giants
Shai Dothan

Mancur Olson claimed that concentrated interests win against diffuse interests even in advanced democracies. Multinational companies, for example, work well in unison to suit their interests. The rest of the public is not motivated or informed enough to resist them. In contrast, other scholars argued that diffuse interests may be able to fight back, but only when certain conditions prevail. One of the conditions for the success of diffuse interests is the intervention of national and international courts. Courts are able to fix problems affecting diffuse interests. Courts can also indirectly empower diffuse interests by initiating deliberation to inform the public. This paper investigates the jurisprudence of the European Court of Human Rights and the Court of Justice of the European Union. It argues that these international courts help consumers, a diffuse interest group, succeed in their struggle against internet companies, a concentrated interest group.

International Human Rights in Asian Constitutions
Ngoc Son Bui

International law is integrated into national constitutions across the world. Particularly, the convergence of national constitutions with international human rights (IHR) law has been a global trend. Asia has been underexplored in the global scholarship on constitutional convergence. This Article seeks to make both theoretical and empirical contributions by exploring three models of convergence with IHR law in seven Asian constitutions: convergence impelled by international inducement in post-war and post-conflict states (Japan and Cambodia), convergence propelled by the domestic precommitment of new democracies (South Korea and Indonesia), and convergence compelled by the international socialization of the socialist states (China, Laos, and Vietnam). Formal convergence creates the condition for several Asian constitutional courts to engage with IHR law. Convergence is not merely a top-down project. This Article additionally proposes a bottom-up theory of discursive convergence, which holds that citizens’ public discourse can influence the incorporation of IHR into constitutions.


Human Rights in Texas: Analyzing Operation Lone Star Through a Human Rights Framework
Olivia S. Callan

In 2021, Texas Governor Greg Abbott launched Operation Lone Star (OLS) under the guise of border security. For over three years, OLS has threatened the lives of migrants and U.S. citizens alike. While advocates have primarily challenged OLS under U.S. state and federal law, this Note examines arguments based on the U.S.’s international treaty obligations, particularly emphasizing the importance of enforcing international mechanisms of accountability. This Note analyzes OLS under three international law treaties the U.S. has ratified: the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and the Convention Against Torture. This Note then evaluates the international mechanisms through which these treaties can be enforced in the U.S.: the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination Committee, the Human Rights Committee, and the Committee Against Torture. By understanding the extent to which OLS violates minimum human rights standards under international law, advocates can bolster their efforts to end OLS and protect migrants and U.S. citizens from future violations of basic human rights.

The Right to Resistance and the Western Sahara: A Twail Analysis of the International Legal Order and Its Constraints on Decolonization
Christina Wrapp

The Western Sahara is often called the “Last Colony in the World,” in reference to its anachronistic status as a territory deemed to have self-determination by the United Nations and ICJ, but still under the rule of another country. Scholarship on the Western Sahara tends to concentrate on the protracted stalemate in their war of independence against Morocco, highlighting the roles of several individual actors, such as France, the United States, the United Nations, and the Polisario, and how these actors create a particular structure to the conflict. This Note focuses on the role of the International Legal Order, as created and upheld by actors such as the United Nations and the United States, in developing and maintaining the stalemate. First, this Note examines the way the rules on the prohibition on the use of force have asymmetrically limited the ability of the Sahrawi people and the Polisario to respond to colonial violence and to pursue their right to self-determination. Second, this Note examines how the principles of self-determination as defined by the International Legal Order further the power imbalances which allow the oppression of the Western Sahara to continue. Following in the tradition of Third World Approaches to International Law, this Note highlights the displacement of the local legal order in the Western Sahara, and aims to demonstrate that by stifling the right to resistance in the Western Sahara, the International Legal Order merely perpetuates the power imbalances of colonialism.