Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

The responsibility to harm: Saving civilians through the use of force in the context of the responsibility to protect
by Torrance, Chris, M.A., Webster University, 2014, 145; 1525125
Abstract (Summary)

The Responsibility to Protect doctrine (R2P) has quickly gained normative acceptance through the United Nations (UN) and its Member States. However, the operationalization of R2P for civilian protection within international society has been challenged by the unwillingness of states to accept the consequences of deploying troops to enforce the normative ideals of R2P. The UN principles of non-intervention and sovereignty are tested when the last option for saving civilians from atrocity crimes is through violence. In these instances, causing harm through the use of force is considered necessary and an implicit `responsibility to harm' can be developed within the R2P framework. This implicit responsibility to harm comes out of combining various elements of the R2P framework, international humanitarian law, and international political, moral, and legal norms. By analyzing how responsibility is assigned and humanitarian intervention mechanisms utilized throughout international society, the opportunities and constraints to the application of this necessary harm for the protection of civilians become clear. The current operational UN intervention system needs to be reformed to allow for the application of necessary harm for civilian protection through R2P. The responsibility to harm provides the conceptual framework required to bring the ideals of R2P into practice for civilian protection.

Keywords: harm, r2p, humanitarian intervention, civilian protection

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: van der Ree, Gerard
School: Webster University
School Location: United States -- Missouri
Source: MAI 52/05M(E), Masters Abstracts International
Subjects: Political science, International law
Keywords: Civilian protection, Harm, Humanitarian interventions, Responsibility to protect, Srebrenica, The harm principle
Publication Number: 1525125
ISBN: 978-1-303-82630-6
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