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his clearly written Understanding treatise is designed to explain what international law is, why it exists, and the basic subjects it covers. The law of treaties is given particular attention, chiefly because of the increasing importance of the treaty in international life. The number of treaties has mushroomed since the Second World War and many of these agreements include over 100 states as parties. Because of their number and the breadth of their coverage, treaties are thus the main form of international legislation. But since they are also contractual in character, and since many multilateral treaties allow states to place conditions on their acceptance of them, the law governing treaties is necessarily more complex than if they were the exact equivalent of national legislation. Understanding International Law also provides introductory coverage of topics of current relevance, such as terrorism, international criminal law, use and applicability of international law in United States courts, and the law governing the use of military force.
The new second edition of Understanding International Law:
- Surveys the ways in which law is made and functions in the international community
- Covers the basic subjects of international law
- Comprehensively updates all chapters of the first edition
- Brings up to date the Supreme Court's treatment of international law through its decisions on the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations and the Alien Tort Statute
- Discusses developments in treaty interpretation, including recent decisions supporting an evolutionary interpretation of the terms of a treaty
- Updates material on the United States position on anticipatory self-defense
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understanding series, International Law
International Law | Law
McCaffrey, Stephen C., "Understanding International Law" (2015). McGeorge School of Law Teaching Materials. 28.