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Full-Text Articles in Political Science

You Say You Want A (Nonviolent) Revolution, Well Then What? Translating Western Thought, Strategic Ideological Cooptation, And Institution Building For Freedom For Governments Emerging Out Of Peaceful Chaos, Donald J. Kochan Mar 2012

You Say You Want A (Nonviolent) Revolution, Well Then What? Translating Western Thought, Strategic Ideological Cooptation, And Institution Building For Freedom For Governments Emerging Out Of Peaceful Chaos, Donald J. Kochan

Donald J. Kochan

With nonviolent revolution in particular, displaced governments leave a power and governance vacuum waiting to be filled. Such vacuums are particularly susceptible to what this Article will call “strategic ideological cooptation.” Following the regime disruption, peaceful chaos transitions into a period in which it is necessary to structure and order the emergent governance scheme. That period in which the new government scheme emerges is particularly fraught with danger when growing from peaceful chaos because nonviolent revolutions tend to be decentralized, unorganized, unsophisticated, and particularly vulnerable to cooptation. Any external power wishing to influence events in societies emerging out of peaceful ...


The Soft Power And Persuasion Of Translations In The War On Terror: Words And Wisdom In The Transformation Of Legal Systems, Donald J. Kochan Dec 2007

The Soft Power And Persuasion Of Translations In The War On Terror: Words And Wisdom In The Transformation Of Legal Systems, Donald J. Kochan

Donald J. Kochan

The power of words is the power of persuasion. The exportation of the foundational legal principles that helped form the American republic can serve as instrumental "soft power" tools in the war on terror. Efforts promoting projects like the Arabic Book Program are important vehicles to cross-cultural and cross-lingual international relations. This Article argues that an arsenal of words can be as, or more, powerful than an arsenal of artillery. The West has much to offer, but the rest of the world needs to be able to read it without getting lost in translation. Providing linguistic access to the documents ...


Boyakasha, Fist To Fist: Respect And The Philosophical Link With Reciprocity In International Law And Human Rights, Donald J. Kochan Dec 2005

Boyakasha, Fist To Fist: Respect And The Philosophical Link With Reciprocity In International Law And Human Rights, Donald J. Kochan

Donald J. Kochan

From Grotius to Hobbes to Locke to an unconventional modern pop-culture manifestation in Ali G, the concept of “respect” has always been understood as important in human interaction and human agreements. The concept of mutual understanding and obligation pervades human interaction, and, for purposes of this Article, international relations. Almost all basic principles in English, United States, and other country’s laws that value human and individual rights have based, over time, the development of their laws on the philosophical principle of respect. So much of common and statutory law is designed to enforce respect for others. The principle question ...


Sovereignty And The American Courts At The Cocktail Party Of International Law: The Dangers Of Domestic Invocations Of Foreign And International Law, Donald J. Kochan Dec 2005

Sovereignty And The American Courts At The Cocktail Party Of International Law: The Dangers Of Domestic Invocations Of Foreign And International Law, Donald J. Kochan

Donald J. Kochan

With increasing frequency and heightened debate, United States courts have been citing foreign and “international” law as authority for domestic decisions. This trend is inappropriate, undemocratic, and dangerous. The trend touches on fundamental concepts of sovereignty, democracy, the judicial role, and overall issues of effective governance. There are multiple problems with the judiciary’s reliance on extraterritorial and extra-constitutional foreign or international sources to guide their decisions. Perhaps the most fundamental flaw is its interference with rule of law values. To borrow from Judge Harold Levanthal, the use of international sources in judicial decision-making might be described as “the equivalent ...


No Longer Little Known But Now A Door Ajar: An Overview Of The Evolving And Dangerous Role Of The Alien Tort Statute In Human Rights And International Law Jurisprudence, Donald J. Kochan Dec 2004

No Longer Little Known But Now A Door Ajar: An Overview Of The Evolving And Dangerous Role Of The Alien Tort Statute In Human Rights And International Law Jurisprudence, Donald J. Kochan

Donald J. Kochan

Human rights’ and other international law activists have long worked to add teeth to their tasks. One of the most interesting avenues for such enforcement has been the Alien Tort Statute (“ATS”). The ATS has become the primary vehicle for injecting international norms and human rights into United States courts – against nation-states, state actors, and even private individuals or corporations alleged to actually or in complicity or conspiracy been responsible for supposed violations of international law. This Symposium Article provides an overview of the ATS evolution (or revolution), discusses the most recent significant development in the evolution arising from some ...


The Political Economy Of The Production Of Customary International Law: The Role Of Non-Governmental Organizations, Donald J. Kochan Dec 2003

The Political Economy Of The Production Of Customary International Law: The Role Of Non-Governmental Organizations, Donald J. Kochan

Donald J. Kochan

Increasingly, United States courts are recognizing various treaties, as well as declarations, proclamations, conventions, resolutions, programmes, protocols, and similar forms of inter- or multi-national “legislation” as evidence of a body of “customary international law” enforceable in domestic courts, particularly in the area of tort liability. These “legislative” documents, which this Article refers to as customary international law outputs, are seen by some courts as evidence of jus cogens norms that bind not only nations and state actors, but also private individuals. The most obvious evidence of this trend is in the proliferation of lawsuits against corporations with ties to the ...


Constitutional Structure As A Limitation On The Scope Of The "Law Of Nations" In The Alien Tort Claims Act, Donald J. Kochan Dec 1997

Constitutional Structure As A Limitation On The Scope Of The "Law Of Nations" In The Alien Tort Claims Act, Donald J. Kochan

Donald J. Kochan

Jurisdiction matters. Outside of the set of jurisdictional constraints, the judiciary is at sea; it poses a threat to the separation of powers and risks becoming a dangerous and domineering branch. Jurisdictional limitations serve a particularly important function when the judiciary is dealing with issues of international law. Since much of international law concerns foreign relations, the province of the executive and, in part, the legislature, the danger that the judiciary will act in a policy-making role or will frustrate the functions of the political branches is especially great. The Framers of the Constitution were particularly concerned with constructing a ...