International Law and International Lies

“International Law and International Lies,” Wall Street Journal, June 21, 1985.


This new version of international law, and the liberal internationalist foreign policy associated with it, has played out its string. The senselessness of its assumptions becomes more apparent with every passing day. The American people see this—witness the popularity of any American ambassador to the U.N. who vigorously asserts American interests and values against that organization. Many higher officials in the State Department understand it well enough—but they are prisoners of what is by now a powerful conventional rhetoric, a set of intellectual habits that pervade the media, academia and public discourse on foreign affairs.