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Politics - Unit 4 > Human Rights > Flashcards

Flashcards in Human Rights Deck (12):

Three types of human right





Implications of Human Rights

- Undermine state sovereignty

- Obliges states to intervene abroad

- Puts greater emphasis on soft power


Does the need to counter terrorise justify restricting human rights?

+ Liberal democratic values give democracies clear weak spots

+ “Lesser evil” compared to the threat of terror

+ Realists: State doesn’t have to be moral

- Plays into the hands of terrorists by giving them grounds to attract sympathy

- Human Rights are indivisible so we can’t prioritise one ahead of another

- Draconian measures hurt soft power and make it harder to reach peaceful conclusion


Criticisms of universal human rights

- Differing conceptions eg Cairo Declaration

- Favour individualism over collectivism eg Asian Values

- Oblige states to act morally, Realists would disagree


Reasons states adhere to international law

- Reciprocity, works for everyone if everyone adheres

- Fear of isolation eg Russia after Crimea

- Fear of punishment eg Gulf War 1991 after Afghanistan tried to annex Crimea


Is the system of international law and courts effective?

+ States tend to adhere to international law

+ ICC catches criminals others can’t eg Gbagbo, becomes a deterrent the more it does this

+ Ad hoc courts good track record eg Karadžić caught by ICTY, ICTR was first to try media for part in genocide

- International law weak next to state sovereignty

- ICC very expensive for only 4 convictions and major powers aren’t signed up

- Ad hoc courts slow and underfunded


Human rights are protected today

+ System of international law is effective

+ Functioning court system in ICC and ad hocs

+ Role of NGOs like Amnesty and Human Rights Watch

- States can easy avoid human rights restrictions eg America’s Extraordinary Rendition

- Courts are weak and ineffective

- Human Rights conceptually weak so difficult to enforce


Why did Human Rights make such progress in the 90s?

- Collapse if the USSR

- Escalation if Globalisation

- Courts


Why did humanitarian intervention increase in the 90s?

- End of the Cold War freed up the P5

- Globalisation made people more aware of plight likes Srebrenica 1992

- Western government saw an opportunity to establish a new world order


Why did humanitarian intervention decline again after 9/11?

- The US changed focus to its own security

- Rise of multipolarity means US no longer dominates UNSC

- Rise in US nationalism means there is less of an appetite for overseas intervention


Humanitarian intervention is an abandoned project

+ 1990s were an exception as the US had its hegemonic moment

+ Multipolarity makes it harder to build consensus

+ Lack of criteria for intervention politicises it

- Collapse of the Cold War ushered in a new era of humanitarian intervention

- Globalisation and human rights law only grow stronger with time

- The world is now aware of the cost of failure thanks to Iran and Bosnia


Humanitarian intervention is never justifiable

+ Legal justification is weak

+ Open to abuse

+ Selective application

- Some legal justification

- Moral justification

- Interdependence