The gulf between law and legitimacy - a distinction popularised in the context of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization's intervention in Kosovo in 1999 - is a more serious crisis-in-the-making for the United Nations than is commonly realised. The reason for the under-estimation of the extent and gravity of the gap is that different segments of the international community have problems with different elements of the gap and fail to capture the several dimensions in their cumulative effect. This is illustrated with respect to international law and international humanitarian law, sanctions, nuclear weapons, atrocity crimes and international interventions, international criminal justice, the Security Council, the UN-United States relationship, and UN integrity systems.
|Melbourne Journal of International Law
|Published - 2010