An Assessment of International Legal Issues in Information Operations

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Full Title of Reference

An Assessment of International Legal Issues in Information Operations

Full Citation

Department of Defense Office of General Counsel, An Assessment of International Legal Issues in Information Operations (1999). Web

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Topics

Key Words

law, espionage, treaties, government, International Law, global, communities, agreements, United Nations, legislation, international relations, law enforcement

Synopsis

International law consists of binding legal obligations among sovereign states. Two of the basic principles of the international legal system are that sovereign states are legally equal and independent actors in the world community, and that they generally assume legal obligations only by affirmatively agreeing to do so. The most effective instruments in creating international law are international agreements, which may be either bilateral or multilateral. Some of these agreements, such as the United Nations Charter, establish international institutions that the parties agree to invest with certain authority. It is also generally accepted that there is a body of customary international law, which consists of practices that have been so widely followed by the community of nations, with the understanding that compliance is mandatory, that they are considered to be legally obligatory.

Additional Notes and Highlights

Principal Author: Phillip A. Johnson (Colonel USAF, Retired)