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Tag: International Affairs

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Ebola 

June 5, 2019

Ebola. It’s perhaps appropriate that the name itself is a French bastardization of an indigenous name for a river in the Congo. As the Democratic Republic of the Congo, one of the most fragile states in the world, struggles to find its footing amid a contested presidential election and various rebellions, the nation is also facing the newest instantiation of Ebola outbreak. The ongoing outbreak, first identified in August 2018, is now the deadliest since the outbreak of 2014-16, which began in Guinea in 2013, directly caused more than 10,000 deaths and indirectly caused many thousands more.

International Affairs 

A Diverse House 

March 19, 2019

Liberty– the preeminent value protected by our Constitution– guarantees all citizens the right to form their own opinions, to create their own raison d’etre, and to champion, or to elect someone to champion, their beliefs. It is why we have the benefit of being governed by a diverse Congress. And appropriately, it is their election– democracy in action– that sets the parameters and guarantees the protection, of the very liberty that gave us the ideas and design to elect them in the first place. It is therefore ironic and paradoxical that the 116th Congress is slowly eroding the fabric of our democratic principles. Earlier this month, House Minority Leader Congressman Kevin McCarthy of California made a statement urging House Democrats to take action against two Freshman Congresswomen, Rashida Tlaib of Michigan and Ilhan Omar of Minnesota, for their acerbic remarks against Israel, and Americans who support Israel. 

International Affairs 

A Snapshot of Sovereignty 

February 7, 2019

In 1900, Lord Kelvin declared to a conference of physicists, “There is nothing new to be discovered in physics now. All that remains is more and more precise measurement.” Just five years later, a young Swiss physicist published the reports known as the Annus mirabilis papers, which included the first mathematical description of quantum mechanics, along with the infamous mass-energy equation: E=mc2. International law has yet to have its miracle year, but if 2016 was any indication, sovereignty has become and will remain relevant again after years of scholarship proclaiming its demise.

International Affairs, International Law 

Anti-Semitism is a Simple Reality, But We Can Change That 

November 13, 2018

In the aftermath of this attack, CNN reported: “Dismay, horror, and disbelief were feelings shared by many in the aftermath of the mass shooting at a synagogue in Pittsburgh.” Similar headlines blazed the front pages of international dailies, such as the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, BBC, and The Guardian. While the international community certainly reacted to the shooting with dismay and horror, disbelief was not among the emotions that registered in the Jewish community.

International Affairs 

Normalizing Moral Absolutes: The Right to Free Expression 

October 22, 2018

Through the normalization and unanimous acceptance of treaties such as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) and the International Convention on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), history has proven that despite our cultural differences, diverging political and economic systems, and unique social norms, the world can agree that certain actions are unquestionably immoral. On the one hand, it, therefore, appears that the world has conceded that there are certain moral absolutes. On the other hand, however, the belief that there are rights and wrongs relative to our own moral convictions abounds.  Saudi Arabia is a case in point.

International Affairs, International Law 

Penn Law Abroad: Reflections from Colombia 

October 16, 2018

Studying abroad in law school is definitely not the norm. That being said, while studying in Colombia has been a giant change, it has given me a completely different perspective on both international law and domestic law in the United States.

International Affairs, International Law 

“By Strengthening Others, We Strengthen Ourselves”: Welcoming President Berset, President of the Swiss Confederation to the University of Pennsylvania 

September 17, 2018

As world leaders convene at the 73rd Session of the UN General Assembly (UNGA) in New York, the University of Pennsylvania is honored to host President Alain Berset, President of the Swiss Confederation on September 27th.

International Affairs, International Law 

“I Would Not Let Gender Hold Me Back” 

August 29, 2018

In honor of Gender Equality Day, Penn Law celebrates Sophie L’Hélias LLM ’87, founder of the Gender Diversity Exchange℠ (GDE). In the story below, she digs deep into her intimate narrative and the powerful forces, both personal and political, that led her to create this groundbreaking index described by L’Hélias as “a search engine for positive impact, that draws upon my experience as an investor, lawyer and board director.”

International Affairs, Womens Rights 

The “Me Too” Movement in Indian Academia 

August 28, 2018

In the wake of these movements, India saw a “Naming and Shaming” Campaign spread through social media. Raya Sarkar, then an LL.M. Candidate at University of California, Davis School of Law, posted a crowd-sourced list of Indian academicians who were alleged to have committed acts of sexual harassment or assault on her Facebook account in October 2017, which soon became viral.

International Affairs, Womens Rights 

Embracing Change, With Caution 

June 28, 2018

To many, the law in Saudi Arabia is the prison shackling women to their homes, their husbands, and their fathers. This perspective, however, is superficial. Even if the law is the prison, more often than not the law is not the prisoner’s shackles. Culture, religion, society, and conformity: these are the true shackles keeping women bound to their posts.

International Affairs, International Law, Womens Rights 

Mass Atrocity Crimes in Myanmar 

May 22, 2018

The United Nations (UN) has long characterized the Rohingya as the world’s most persecuted population. Historically, the Burmese viewed the ethnic and religious minority as illegal immigrants permitted entry by their former British colonizers. Such historical context informs contemporary views of the group as “foreigners.” And that has helped justify decades-long persecution by both private and public actors culminating in the Rohingya’s legal exclusion as citizens and other discrimination codified as law. Despite the group’s pre-colonial ancestral ties to the land, messaging that Rohingya are “outsiders,” “Bengalis” and even, “terrorists,” has helped the government justify mass atrocity crimes. The current humanitarian and human rights crises also implicate national security.

International Affairs, International Law