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Law and Honour: Normative Pluralism in the Regulation of Military Conduct

Jan Klabbers & Touko Piiparinen (eds), Normative Pluralism and International Law: Exploring Global Governance (Cambridge University Press, 2013, Forthcoming)

U of Melbourne Legal Studies Research Paper No. 582

23 Pages Posted: 10 May 2012 Last revised: 23 Oct 2012

Rain Liivoja

Melbourne Law School; Erik Castrén Institute of International Law and Human Rights

Date Written: May 9, 2012

Abstract

National legal systems as well as international law seek to place constraints on the conduct of military personnel. But service members are also commonly guided by a body of professional ethics - a set of non-legal rules that often revolve around the notion of honour. This paper considers a particular technique for reducing the potential normative dissonance between rules of law and rules of honour - the incorporation of codes of honour into law by reference. The paper argues that the rules of national military law that prescribe punishment for disgraceful conduct, as well as the rules of the law of armed conflict prohibiting treachery, are open-ended and their content depends on the conceptions of honourable military conduct prevailing at the time.

Keywords: treachery, prejudicial conduct, honour, normative pluralism

JEL Classification: K00, K30

Suggested Citation

Liivoja, Rain, Law and Honour: Normative Pluralism in the Regulation of Military Conduct (May 9, 2012). Jan Klabbers & Touko Piiparinen (eds), Normative Pluralism and International Law: Exploring Global Governance (Cambridge University Press, 2013, Forthcoming); U of Melbourne Legal Studies Research Paper No. 582. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2055519

Rain Liivoja (Contact Author)

Melbourne Law School ( email )

University of Melbourne, Victoria 3010
Australia
+61 3 8344 1760 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://law.unimelb.edu.au/about/staff/rain-liivoja

Erik Castrén Institute of International Law and Human Rights ( email )

P.O. Box 4
Yliopistonkatu 3
University of Helsinki, FIN-00014
Finland

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