Legality and Legitimacy in the Global Order

Aslı Ü. Bâli

in Legality and Legitimacy in Global Affairs

Published in print March 2012 | ISBN: 9780199781577
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199932887 | DOI:
Legality and Legitimacy in the Global Order

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This chapter seeks to address, through the prism of recent debates about the tension between legality and legitimacy, the erosion of the norm of nonproliferation. The legality-legitimacy debate intersects with questions surrounding nonproliferation in two respects. First, arguments for counter-proliferation might employ the logic of legitimacy to justify interventions to prevent weapons proliferation in the absence of clear legal authorization. A second, and distinct, set of arguments point to a gap between legality and legitimacy in the case of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), stemming from the failure of the nuclear weapon states to implement their disarmament obligations. In this chapter, I argue that without a re-linking of the nonproliferation and disarmament components of the NPT and a retreat from the interventionist logic of counter-proliferation, the perceived legitimacy of the nonproliferation regime, and ultimately its enforceability, will be seriously damaged.

Keywords: non-proliferation; disarmament; counter-proliferation; intervention; sovereignty; use of force; norms

Chapter.  35784 words. 

Subjects: International Relations

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