January 14, 2011
AALS Section on International Law Hosts Successful Year-In-Review Program
At the annual meeting of the American Association of Law Schools (AALS) last week in San Francisco, the Section on International Law hosted a day-long program entitled, "International Law 2010 Year in Review." The program was modeled on the American Bar Association's publication by the same name, which is forthcoming in the spring 2011 edition of the International Lawyer, published by SMU Dedman School of Law. Pictured to the left is one panel on "People and Places" in international law. Professor WIlliam Mock of John Marshall Law School was the moderator. Professor Stephanie Farrier of Vermont Law School updated the audience on international legal developments with respect to sexual orientation and gender identity. Lauren Redman of the University of Lucerne Faculty of Law in Switzerland provided an update on developments in Africa. Professor Shalanda Baker, a Hasties Fellow at Wisconsin Law School, discussed the implications of Faculty Senate of Florida International University v. Winn, 616 F.3d 1206 (11th Cir. 2010), which upheld Florida's restrictions on faculty travel to Cuba. Finally, Professor David Austin of California Western School of Law provided an immigration law update. There were several other substantive panels, including one on recent activity at the International Court of Justice; one on international criminal law; one on developments in the areas of international environmental law and international trade; and finally one on human rights issues. In addition, there was a very moving Memorial Tribute to remember international law professors who died during 2010.(Professor Mark Wojcik of John Marshall Law School and Professor Nadia Nedzel of Southern University Law Center are pictured here reading the tributes to our colleagues.) Kudos to Mark Wojcik for organizing such an informative and successful program!
January 11, 2011
Great New Research Tool for Constitutions from Around the World
While I was in the exhibit hall during the annual meeting of the Association of American Law Schools, I learned that HeinOnline has a new publication on "World Constitutions Illustrated: Contemporary & Historical Documents & Resources." And now I've also learned from our friends at the Law Librarian Blog that the pubilcation was selected as one of the year's Outstanding Academic Titles by the editorial staff of Choice. Out of 7,292 titles reviewed during the past year only 668 publications made Choice's Outstanding Academic Titles list this year.
HeinOnline is also conducting a World Constitutions Illustrated webinar on January 27, 2011. The webinar will show what the product is and explain how to use it. In the past months they have added thousands of additional pages, hundreds of books, more links, and expanded the constitutional hierarchies for several countries.
Proposals for the Global Legal Skills Conference
The sixth Global Legal Skills Conference will take place on May 5-7, 2011 at The John Marshall Law School in Chicago. Persons interested in making a presentation or organizing a panel for the conference should submit proposals to the Planning Committee by January 31, 2011, by sending it to 7wojcik[at]jmls.edu.
You will be notified as to whether your proposal has been accepted by the middle of February. There is no particular format for proposals. Some proposals may be quite detailed, while others might have just the title of the proposal, a brief description (unless it is clear from the title), and contact information for presenters. You might propose an entire panel, or just an individual presentation that we might combine with others. Submissions are welcome on all aspects of international legal skills education, with a special (but not exclusive) focus on teaching students who speak English as a second language. Previous conferences also included presentations on Legal Spanish, on teaching Trial Advocacy in Ireland, on legal translations, and on other aspects of international legal education and teaching international law. Most presentations will focus on the special educational aspects of teaching students trained in other languages and other, frequently non-common law, legal traditions.
In your proposal, please let us know how much time you will need. Please choose 20 or 50 minutes. Please also let us know where your proposal fits within the following categories:
1. How to teach: Tips for those who teach international students either here or abroad.
2. How to do: Tips by and for U.S. and foreign practitioners who have global practices.
3. Curricular development: Presentations on what schools offer, or should be offering, their foreign students.
4. What it's all about: Lessons on law/culture/practice in other countries.
5. Developing Materials: Ideas on developing materials for class.
6. Other: Anything that does not fit within the other categories.
Please send any questions to Mark Wojcik by email at mwojcik[at]jmls.edu or intlawprof[at]gmail.com.
January 10, 2011
New Law Makes Closure of Gitmo Anytime Soon Unlikely
President Obama signed into law a military appropriations bill that makes it extremely difficult for the President to keep his promise to close the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay in the near future. Section 1032 of the bill prohibits the use of any funding authorized by the bill for the transfer of Guantanamo Bay detainees to the United States for trials in federal courts (unless they are U.S. citizens). Section 1033 of the bill prohibits funds from being used to transfer detainees to foreign countries unless ordered by a U.S. court or certain certifications are made by the Obama Adminstration. President Obama expressed reluctance upon signing the bill, but said he felt compelled to sign it because of the need for appropriations for other military-related matters. He has pledged to continue to find ways to close the facility at Guantanamo Bay.
Costa Rica v. Nicaragua - ICJ Hearing on Request for Provisional Measures
The International Court of Justice (ICJ) will hold public hearings this week regarding Costa Rica's request for provisional measures against Nicaragua from Tuesday, January 11 to Thursday, January 13, 2011 at the Hague. Costa Rica initiated this case in November 2010, complaining that Nicaragua's army had crossed illegally into Costa Rican territory, set up camps there and engaged in unauthorized dredging activities in Costa Rican waters, causing damage to the forest and the San Juan and Colorado Rivers. Costa Rica has requested a provisional order that Nicaraguan troops immediately withdraw from Costa Rican territory and and cease activity there.
January 9, 2011
Southern Sudan Votes on Independence
Today, the predominantly Christian and animist residents of Southern Sudan will vote in a referendum to decide whether they wish to be an independent nation from the predominantly Arab and Muslim residents of Northern Sudan after two decades of armed conflict. We wish for a fair and peaceful referendum for all the Sudanese people.