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Keywords: International Law

  • AUSTRALIA

    Does the 'Let it Rip' approach have a eugenics problem?

    • Justin Glyn
    • 27 January 2022
    10 Comments

    In the early part of the twentieth century, Francis Galton (a cousin of Charles Darwin) used the latter’s work to argue that human breeding stock could be improved. He would weed out the weakest and the less able and produce a sturdier race. Until recently, the crematoria of Hitler’s death camps were enough to remind most that this was not an idea consonant with actual human flourishing.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Salvaging the shipwreck

    • Stephen Minas
    • 18 January 2022
    14 Comments

    During his December journey to the eastern Mediterranean nations of Cyprus and Greece, Pope Francis drew attention to the conditions for irregular migration that result in thousands drowning at sea and many more languishing for years in camps. The International Organization for Migration records 23,150 missing migrants in the Mediterranean since 2014.

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  • ECONOMICS

    Best of 2021: Why corporatism, not capitalism, is the root of social harm

    • David James
    • 04 January 2022

    There really is no such thing as ‘capitalism’ — or rather there are so many capitalisms that the word is altogether too imprecise to be useful. A much better term to identify the problems, even evils, of modern developed economies is ‘corporatism’. This can be precisely identified and its transgressions and general harm are getting worse.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    There will be a next time. We must do better.

    • Cristy Clark
    • 16 December 2021

    Under Victoria’s Border Directions after 23 July, people in NSW, including Victorian residents, were effectively prevented from entering the state. Their only option was to request an exemption for a number of specified reasons including ‘attending a funeral or end of life event or returning home for health, wellbeing, care or compassionate reasons or for any other reason under a general discretion’.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Legitimised judicial captivity: The Assange case

    • Binoy Kampmark
    • 16 December 2021

    The legal pursuit of Assange is disturbingly unique not only for using an archaic law against a non-US national; it is also the first instance of an international application of it against a publisher. The law, if applied in the way suggested by the charges, criminalise the receipt, dissemination and publication of national security information, irrespective of motive. If the US Espionage Act 1917 were applied in this way, it would appear to subvert the free press provision in the United States Constitution.

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  • AUSTRALIA

    The first sign of corruption

    • Andrew Hamilton
    • 09 December 2021
    9 Comments

    Corruption in society is a sign that respect for human dignity has been eroded. If we identify the value of human beings with their ability to compete, we are easily led to treat other people and groups in society as instruments to be used for our own gain. The result is that the integrity of public institutions and people’s trust in them are eaten away.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    The thawing of a frozen conflict

    • Justin Glyn
    • 30 November 2021
    3 Comments

    Global warming, much in the news of late, has been accompanied by another unwelcome thaw. The ‘frozen conflict’ in the East of Ukraine between a Western-backed, Ukrainian nationalist government and Russian-speaking rebels with cultural affinity with Moscow, has been heating up alarmingly.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    Outgrowing apartheid: FW de Klerk

    • Binoy Kampmark
    • 23 November 2021
    29 Comments

    The passing of South Africa’s last apartheid president, FW de Klerk, raises pressing questions about a complex historical character who, according to his brother, Willem de Klerk, slowly outgrew apartheid. In a critical sense, he was bound, understandably, by both time and context: race, the need to defend a racial hierarchy, the historical role of a segregationist system that saw his all-white National Party retain power for decades. 

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    In the shadow of SIEV-X

    • Binoy Kampmark
    • 01 November 2021
    27 Comments

    Two decades ago, an Indonesian vessel given the name SIEV X sank with loss of life that should have caused a flood of tears and a surge of compassion. Instead of being seen in humanitarian terms, the deaths of 353 people became a form of rich political capital, placed in the bank of opportunism to be amortised at a federal election.

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  • INTERNATIONAL

    From persecution to protection and the purgatory in between

    • Kerry Murphy
    • 28 October 2021
    5 Comments

    Mark Twain is reported to have said ‘history does not repeat, it rhymes.’ Watching a US helicopter evacuating people from the US Embassy in Kabul, that was rhyming. Many have seen this picture before, 30 April 1975, but then it was Saigon. The massive confusion, mixed messages, terrified people, lack of human rights protection happened in 1975, and still happens in 2021.

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  • ENVIRONMENT

    The right to a healthy environment

    • Cristy Clark
    • 21 October 2021
    2 Comments

    On 8 October, at its 48th session, the United Nations Human Rights Council formally adopted a resolution recognising the human right to a clean, healthy and sustainable environment. It emphasises that ‘environmental degradation, climate change and unsustainable development constitute some of the most pressing and serious threats to the ability of present and future generations to enjoy human rights, including the right to life’.

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  • ARTS AND CULTURE

    Observing October

    • Barry Gittins
    • 11 October 2021
    3 Comments

    I have decided to observe October as a month to observe other people observing things. For me, there was a sense of self crumbling under the weight of being house arrested for the good of all. Gravitas, like gravity, can be crushing; I knew I needed a break from howling at the Moon (16 October is the ‘international observe the Moon night’). So to the calendar I turned.

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