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Law and the Future of War
42 minutes | Jul 21, 2021
Experimenting on humans and international law - Thibault Moulin
In this episode, Dr Simon McKenzie talks with Dr Thibault Moulin about the international legal regulation of experiments on humans. These experiments test existing frameworks of international law, and they discuss the limits that international humanitarian law and international human rights law places on human enhancement and the experiments that bring them into being.Dr Thibault Moulin is a Lecturer at the Catholic University of Lyon in France. His research focuses on the regulation of new technologies by international law, in particular cyber-operations and human enhancement. He holds a PhD in Law from the University of Manchester and a French Doctorate from the University of Grenoble-Alpes. He was also a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.Further readingThibault Moulin, 'Doctors Playing Gods? The Legal Challenges in Regulating the Experimental Stage of Cybernetic Human Enhancement' (2021) 54(2) Israel Law Review 236.Rain Liivoja and Luke Chircop, 'Are Enhanced Warfighters Weapons, Means or Methods of Warfare?' (2018) 94 International Law Studies 161Rain Liivoja, 'Being More Than You Can Be: Enhancement of Warfighters and the Law of Armed Conflict' in Matthew Waxman and Thomas W. Oakley (eds), The Future Law of Armed Conflict (The Lieber Studies; Oxford University Press, 2021, Forthcoming)Rain Liivoja, 'New Technologies Symposium: Human Enhancement Technologies and the Law in War and Peace', (8 May 2019) Opinio Juris Blog.Heather Harrison Dinniss and Jann Kleffner, 'Soldier 2.0: Military Human Enhancement and International Law' (2016) 92 International Law Studies 432.
53 minutes | Jul 7, 2021
The new and old of emerging military technology - Maaike Verbruggen
In this episode, Dr Simon McKenzie talks with Maaike Verbruggen about how history can help us grapple with new military technologies. They talk about developments in AI, human-machine teaming and swarming capabilities and try to work through what can be taken from the histories of arms control and technology to help us understand our current situation.Maaike Verbruggen is a historian & sociologist, who now works on the politics of future technology. She is currently a doctoral researcher at the Center for Security, Diplomacy and Strategy at the Brussels School of Governance at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel. Her PhD thesis is on the drivers for and obstacles to military innovation in artificial intelligence, and she has broader interests in arms control, military innovation and emerging technologies. She previously worked at the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) on autonomous weapons and export controls. Further reading:Technical scientific literature (she tells us not to be intimidated!)Donald Mackenzie, Inventing Accuracy: A Historical Sociology of Nuclear Missile Guidance (1990: The MIT Press)David Edgerton, The Shock of the Old: Technology and Global History Since 1900 (2007: OUP)Maaike's Twitter thread of recommendations.
39 minutes | Jun 23, 2021
Legal regulation of military activities in space - Dale Stephens
In this episode, Dr Eve Massingham talks with Professor Dale Stephens CSM about law and war in outer space. They discuss the legal regime for outer space, what it says about military activities and how developments in technology are impacting these. They specifically discuss autonomy in space – both in relation to weapons and other activities such as the extraction of space debris, consider the legal liability regime for launching objects into space and contemplate the challenges of infrastructure in space serving both military and civilian purposes.Dr Dale Stephens is a Professor at Adelaide Law School and a Captain in the Royal Australian Navy Reserve who spent over 20 years as a permanent officer in the Royal Australian Navy. Dale’s legal and military career has seen him work on a range of military law and international law topics, as well as see operational military service in East Timor and Iraq. Dale is an Editor and Board Member of the forthcoming Woomera Manual of International Law of Military Space Operations and is widely published on the topic of space law.Further reading:Dale Stephens, 'Law and War in Outer Space' (2018) 40(2) Law Society of SA Bulletin 32 Dale Stephens (with Cassandra Steer), 'Conflicts in Space: International Humanitarian Law and its Application to Space Warfare' (2015) Vol XL Annals of Air and Space Law 71.Dale Stephens, 'The International Legal Implications of Military Space Operations: Examining the Interplay between International Humanitarian Law and the Outer Space Legal Regime ' (2018) 94 International Legal Studies 75.
37 minutes | Jun 9, 2021
Forecasting military technology and strategic challenges - Michael O'Hanlon
In this episode, Dr Simon McKenzie talks with Michael O'Hanlon about forecasting what the future of military technology holds, and the conflicts should we be planning for or trying to avoid. The speed of technological development and digital transformation makes this job harder than ever. They discuss how he thinks out what the future holds – both technologically and strategically – over the next 20 years and how to prepare for it. Michael O'Hanlon is a senior fellow and director of research in Foreign Policy at the Brookings Institution. He specializes in U.S. defense strategy, the use of military force, and American national security policy. He has several academic appointments, advisory positions and has written extensively on military technology, future conflicts, and the role of American power in the world. Further reading:Michael E. O'Hanlon, Defense 101: Understanding the Military of Today and Tomorrow (2021)Michael E. O'Hanlon, The Art of War in an Age of Peace: U.S. Grand Strategy and Resolute Restraint (2021)Michael E. O'Hanlon, The Senkaku Paradox: Risking Great Power War Over Small Stakes (2019)Michael E. O'Hanlon, The Future of Land Warfare (2015)Michael E. O'Hanlon, Technological Change and the Future of Warfare(2000)The books of P. W. Singer Bruce G. Blair, The End of Nuclear Warfighting: Moving to a Deterrence-Only Posture (2018)Bruce G. Blair, The Logic of Accidental Nuclear War(1993)James Stavridis & Elliot Ackerman, 2034: A Novel of the Next World War (2021)Stephen Rosen, Winning the Next War: Innovation and the Modern Military (1994)
38 minutes | May 26, 2021
Submarine cables and the law of armed conflict - Rob McLaughlin, Tamsin Paige and Douglas Guilfoyle
In this episode, Dr Simon McKenzie is joined by Professor Rob McLaughlin, Dr Tamsin Paige and Associate Professor Douglas Guilfoyle to talk about the application of the law of armed conflict to submarine cables. These cables carry information crucial for national security. They are an essential part of the link between overseas embassies and their capital, not to mention military bases and operations with their commanders. In fact, there is almost no part of modern life that they do not in some way support. Given their central importance, you might think that the legal categorisation and protection of submarine cables would be clear. But, this is far from the case – if, how and when these cables can be military objectives, and how the principle of proportionality might apply, is unclear. Professor Rob McLaughlin of ANU researches, publishes, and teaches in the areas of Law of Armed Conflict, Law of the Sea, Maritime Security Law and Maritime Law Enforcement, and Military Law. Dr Tamsin Paige is a Lecturer with Deakin Law School and consults for the UN Office on Drugs and Crime in relation to Maritime Crime. Prior to this, she was a Postdoctoral Fellow at UNSW Canberra @ ADFA. Her work is interdisciplinary in nature, using qualitative sociological methods to analyse international law. Associate Professor Douglas Guilfoyle from UNSW Canberra researches maritime security, the international law of the sea, and international and transnational criminal law. Particular areas of specialism include maritime law-enforcement, the law of naval warfare, international courts and tribunals, and the history of international law.Further reading:A Pearce Higgins, ‘Submarine Cables and International Law’ (1921-1922) 2 British Year Book of International Law 27 Robert Tucker, ‘The Law of War and Neutrality at Sea’ (1955) 50 International Law Studies 1 Tara Davenport, 'Submarine Cables, Cybersecurity and International Law: An Intersectional Analysis' (2015) 24 Cath. U. J. L. & Tech.
42 minutes | May 12, 2021
Cyber autonomy - Ryan Ko
In this episode, Dr Simon McKenzie talks with Professor Ryan Ko about the prospects and risks of cyber autonomy. Programs and systems are being developed that automate cyber defence, allowing them to self-discover, prove and correct software vulnerabilities at real-time. Some are even capable of doing more than defending, but can also attack other systems in the computer network, all without direct human oversight.Professor Ryan Ko is Chair and Director of Cyber Security at the University of Queensland and is also Deputy Head of School (External Engagement) at the School of Information Technology and Electrical Engineering. His research in cyber security focuses on returning control of data to cloud computing users, reducing users' reliance on trusting third-parties and focusses on (1) provenance logging and reconstruction, traceability and (2) privacy-preserving data processing. Along with his academic research, he has advised companies and governments on managing cybersecurity risks. Further readingRyan Ko, 'Cyber Autonomy: Automating the Hacker', preprint of chapter in Reuben Steff, Joe Burton, Simona R. Soare, Emerging Technologies and International Security: Machines, the State, and War (Routledge, 2020).David Brumley, The Cyber Grand Challenge and the Future of Cyber-Autonomy (2018) USENIX, ;login: ,43(2).Team Shellphish, Cyber Grand Shellphish.
49 minutes | Apr 28, 2021
The infrastructure of the internet - Scott Wilkie
In this episode, Dr Simon McKenzie talks with Scott Wilkie about the infrastructure of the internet. They discuss how we should think about its physical and software components, and why getting the framing right is key to regulating it. They also address what sort of interventions should be made by Governments, including if and how the military should be involved in cyber defence.Scott Wilkie is a former investment banker, founder of technology companies and advisor to governments on their cyber-secure capabilities. This has included cyber security governance and risk models, digital transformation, analytics, artificial intelligence, trust in a digital world and cloud computing. He is well known in Australia and across the Five Eyes for leading policy and strategy development for digital sovereignty and security of critical supply chains and infrastructure.Further reading:Australian Cyber Security Centre, The Cyber Security PrinciplesThe 5 knows of cyber securityScott Shackelford, 'The FBI is breaking into corporate computers to remove malicious code – smart cyber defense or government overreach?' The Conversation (26 April 2021)Sun Tzu, The Art of WarShane Harris, @War: The Rise of Cyber Warfare (2014, Hachette)
29 minutes | Apr 15, 2021
Data as an object in IHL - Simon McKenzie
In this episode, Dr Eve Massingham talks with Dr Simon McKenzie to talk about how some of the fundamental categories of IHL are challenged by cyber operations. In particular, the concepts of ‘objects’ and ‘attacks’, with their apparent focus on physicality, are hard to fit with the intangible elements of cyberspace. They explore this issue by considering whether ‘data’ can be thought of as an object for the purposes of IHL, and why is important. Simon McKenzie is a Research Fellow at the University of Queensland School of Law. Simon's current research focuses on the legal challenges connected with the defence and security applications of science and technology, with a particular focus on the impact of autonomous systems. His broader research and teaching interests include the law of armed conflict, international criminal law, and domestic criminal law.Further reading:Jennifer Daskal, ‘The Un-Territoriality of Data’ (2015) 125 Yale Law Journal 326 Michael Schmitt (ed.), Tallinn Manual 2.0 on the International Law Applicable to Cyber Operations (2nd edn., Cambridge University Press, 2017) L. Gisel, T. Rodenhäuser and K. Dörmann, ‘Twenty Years on: International Humanitarian Law and the Protection of Civilians against the Effects of Cyber Operations during Armed Conflict’, September 2020 International Review of the Red Cross Michael Schmitt, ‘Wired Warfare 3.0: Protecting the Civilian Population during Cyber Operations’, 101 International Review of the Red Cross (2019) 333 Kubo Mačák, ‘Military Objectives 2.0: The Case for Interpreting Computer Data as Objects under International Humanitarian Law’, 48 Israel Law Review (2015) 55 H.A. Harrison Dinniss, ‘The Nature of Objects: Targeting Networks and the Challenge of Defining Cyber Military Objectives’, 48 Israel Law Review (2015) 39
25 minutes | Mar 31, 2021
The Banning of Hostile Environmental Modification in the ENMOD Convention - Emily Crawford
In this episode, Dr Simon McKenzie talks with Associate Professor Emily Crawford about the Convention on the Prohibition of Military or Any Other Hostile Use of Environmental Modification Techniques – known as the ENMOD Convention. This Convention – adopted by the UN General Assembly in 1976 and ratified by 78 States – prohibits weaponising the natural environment against other State parties. However, the technology it regulates – the artificial creation of natural phenomena like earthquakes, cyclones, or tsunamis for hostile purposes – has never been developed or used. This technology is like something out of science fiction. This episode examines how this striking Convention came to be, what the drafters thought it might cover, and why they thought it was a useful new treaty for the law of war. Emily Crawford is an Associate Professor at the University of Sydney Law School, where she teaches and researches in international law, international humanitarian law and international criminal law. She has published widely in the field of international humanitarian law, including two monographs (The Treatment of Combatants and Insurgents under the Law of Armed Conflict (OUP 2010) and Identifying the Enemy: Civilian Participation in Hostilities (OUP 2015)) and a textbook (International Humanitarian Law (with Alison Pert, 2nd edition, CUP 2020)), and is currently working on her third monograph, on the impact of non-binding instruments in international humanitarian law. She is an associate of the Sydney Centre for International Law at the University of Sydney, and a co-editor of the Journal of International Humanitarian Studies.Further reading:Emily Crawford, 'Accounting for the ENMOD Convention: Cold War Influences on the Origins and Development of the 1976 Convention on Environmental Modification Techniques' in M. Craven, S. Pahuja, & G. Simpson (Eds.), International Law and the Cold War (2019, Cambridge University Press), 81-97.James Fleming, Fixing the Sky: The Checkered History of Weather and Climate Control (2010, Columbia University Press).
43 minutes | Mar 17, 2021
Metaphors and cyberspace - Julia Slupska
In this episode, Dr Simon McKenzie talks with Julia Sluspka about how the metaphors we use to understand cyberspace impact on how we imagine it should be regulated. They discuss the ways in which the conceptualisation of cyberspace is contested. Is it like spatial territory? Are states engaged in cyber war? Or is it like an ecosystem, or infrastructure? The metaphor we adopt frames the problems we see and the solutions we arrive at. Julia Slupska is a doctoral student at the Centre for Doctoral Training in Cybersecurity and the Oxford Internet Institute. Her research focuses on technologically-mediated abuse like image-based sexual abuse ('revenge porn') and stalking, as well as emotion, care and metaphors in cybersecurity. Further readingJulia Slupska, 'War, Health and Ecosystem: Generative Metaphors in Cybersecurity Governance', Philosophy & Technology (2020).Julia Slupska, 'Safe at Home: Towards a Feminist Critique of Cybersecurity' in Whose Security is Cybersecurity? Authority, Responsibility and Power in Cyberspace (St. Anthony's International Review 2019 no. 15)George Lakoff & Mark Johnson, Metaphors We Live By (1980, University of Chicago Press).Dominik Lukeš, 'Hacking a metaphor in five steps', Metaphor Hacker (July 18 2010).Florian Eggloff, 'Cybersecurity and the Age of Privateering: A Historical Analogy', Cyber Studies Working Paper No. 1 (March 2015, University of Oxford)Donald Schön 'Generative metaphor: A perspective on problem-setting in social policy' in Ortony, A. (Ed.) Metaphor and Thought (1993, 2nd ed, Cambridge University Press).Mariarosaria Taddeo, 'On the Risks of Relying on Analogies to Understand Cyber Conflicts' (2016) 26 Minds and Machines 317-321.Cynthia Enloe, Bananas, Beaches and Bases: Making Feminist Sense of International Politics (2nd ed., 2014, University of California Press).Karen Levy and Bruce Schneier, 'Privacy threats in intimate relationships' 6(1) Journal of Cybersecurity (2020).Cornell Tech Univerisity Project on Computer Security and Privacy for Survivors of Intimate Partner ViolenceKatherine Miller, James Shires, Tatiana Tropina, Gender Approaches to Cybersecurity(2021, UNIDIR)
46 minutes | Mar 3, 2021
The ICRC's perspective on new technology and international humanitarian law - Cordula Droege
In this episode, Dr Eve Massingham talks with Dr Cordula Droege about some of the challenges new technologies pose to international humanitarian law. They discuss nuclear weapons, autonomous weapons systems, cyber operations, and the importance of carrying out weapon reviews. They also consider some of the uses of technology for humanitarian purposes, including the rewards and risks of using biometric data.Dr Cordula Droege is the chief legal officer and head of the legal division of the ICRC, where she leads the ICRC’s efforts to uphold, implement and develop international humanitarian law. She joined the ICRC in 2005 and has held a number of positions in the field and at headquarter, including as head of the legal advisers to operations, and most recently as chief of staff to the President of the ICRC. She has some twenty years of experience in the field of international law, and in her earlier career worked for the International Commission of Jurists, the Inter-American Court of Human Rights and the Max Planck Institute for International Law. She holds a law degree and a PhD from the University of Heidelberg and an LL.M from the London School of Economics.Further reading:The ICRC's page on New Technologies and IHL
31 minutes | Feb 17, 2021
Countermeasures in cyberspace - Samuli Haataja
In this episode, Dr Simon McKenzie talks with Dr Samuli Haataja about countermeasures in cyberspace. The right to countermeasures is a mechanism in international law that allows States to take action when they have suffered an international wrong. Some of features of cyberspace challenge this well-established body of rules, and it may need to change to ensure States have an effective remedy to deter foreign cyber attacks. Samuli researches the public international law aspects of cybersecurity, and his book Cyber Attacks and International Law on the Use of Force: The Turn to Information Ethics was published by Routledge in 2019. He’s also a member of the IEEE Society on Society Implication of Technology.Further Reading:Samuli Haataja, 'Cyber Operations and Collective Countermeasures under International Law' (2020) 25(1) Journal of Conflict and Security Law, 33–51Tallinn Manual 2.0 on the International Law Applicable to Cyber OperationsDraft Articles on Responsibility of States for Internationally Wrongful ActsAustralia's position on how international law applies to state conduct in cyberspaceNew Zealand - The Application of International Law to State Activity in Cyberspace
41 minutes | Feb 3, 2021
The role of the military defending cyber operations against critical infrastructure - Rhiannon Neilsen and Karine Pontbriand
In this episode, Dr Simon McKenzie talks with Rhiannon Neilsen and Karine Pontbriand on the role of militaries in defending against cyber operations. They argue that the vulnerability of critical infrastructure of many States to cyber operations - particularly due to privatisation - means that militaries need to step up their contribution to cyber defence. They talk about why NATO militaries are reluctant to do this, the basis for this position, and why it is problematic. Rhiannon Neilsen is a Scientia PhD Candidate at the University of New South Wales. Her research interests include atrocity prevention, moral and political philosophy, cyberspace, and the Responsibility to Protect. In 2019, she was awarded the Barbara Hale Fellowship by the Australian Federation of Graduate Women to be a visiting doctoral student at the University of Oxford. Rhiannon has also been a visiting scholar at the NATO Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence (2019). Her published work has appeared in international journals, such as Ethics and International Affairs (2020), Terrorism and Political Violence (2019), and Genocide Studies and Prevention (2015).Karine Pontbriand is a PhD Candidate in International Relations and Cyber Security at UNSW Canberra, and is a member of the Research Group on Cyber War and Peace. She is also a research fellow at the Research Group on Cyber Diplomacy and Cyber Security at the Montreal Institute of International Studies (IEIM). Before starting her doctoral studies, she worked as a policy analyst for Global Affairs Canada where she was focusing on the use of digital technology to advance Canada's foreign policy priorities. She has an undergraduate degree in International Relations and International Law and a master’s degree in International and Intercultural Communication (with Distinction, Highest Grade). Her main research interests are international cyber security, cyber diplomacy and cyber war and US-China cyber relations.
55 minutes | Jan 20, 2021
International Law in Cyber Space and the Tallinn Manuals - Michael Schmitt
In this episode, Dr Rain Liivoja talks to Professor Michael Schmitt about the Tallinn Manuals on the law applicable to cyber operations. They discuss the impetus for the manuals, their drafting process, some of the main findings and the reception by states and scholars. They also talk about the plans for Tallinn Manual 3.0.Professor Michael N Schmitt is Professor of International Law at the University of Reading. He is also Senior Fellow at the NATO Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence; Francis Lieber Distinguished Scholar at West Point’s Lieber Institute; Charles H Stockton Distinguished Scholar at the US Naval War College; Distinguished Scholar at the University of Texas’ Strass Center for International Security and Law; and Director of Legal Affairs for Cyber Law International. He directed the Tallinn Manual project from 2009–2017.Further readingMichael N Schmitt (gen ed), Tallinn Manual on the International Law Applicable to Cyber Warfare (Cambridge University Press 2013)Michael N Schmitt (gen ed), Tallinn Manual 2.0 on the International Law Applicable to Cyber Operations (Cambridge University Press 2017)Nicholas Tsagourias and Russell Buchan (eds), Research Handbook on International Law and Cyberspace (Elgar 2015)NATO CCDCOE Library
34 minutes | Jan 6, 2021
The Obligation to Review New Weapons - Natalia Jevglevskaja
In this episode, Dr Simon McKenzie talks with Dr Natalia Jevglevskaja about the obligation to review new weapons found in Article 36 of Additional Protocol 1 to the Geneva Conventions. They discuss what the weapons review obligation requires, the kinds of technologies it applies to, and the different approaches states take to fulfilling the obligation. They also discuss some of its limitations and the challenges posed by recent developments in machine processing and artificial intelligence.Dr Natalia Jevglevskaja is a Research Fellow at the University of New South Wales at the Australian Defence Force Academy in Canberra. Natalia’s research interests include law of armed conflict, human rights law and comparative law. Natalia has a PhD from the University of Melbourne, holds an LL.M in Public International Law from the University of Utrecht (2013), awarded with cum laude to mark outstanding achievement and completed her undergraduate studies in law at the University of Heidelberg (2011).Suggested further reading:International Committee of the Red Cross, ‘A Guide to the Legal Review of New Weapons, Means and Methods of Warfare: Measures to Implement Article 36 of Additional Protocol I of 1977’ (2006) 88 International Review of the Red Cross 931Boulanin, Vincent and Maaike Verbruggen, SIPRI Compendium on Article 36 Reviews (December 2017) SIPRI The Australian Article 36 Review Process, Group of Governmental Experts of the High Contracting Parties to the Convention on Prohibitions or Restrictions on the Use of Certain Conventional Weapons Which May Be Deemed to Be Excessively Injurious or to Have Indiscriminate Effects, UN Doc CCW/GGE.2/2018/WP.6
35 minutes | Dec 16, 2020
The Future of Military Technology - Jason Scholz and Simon Ng
In this episode, Dr Eve Massingham talks to Professor Jason Scholz and Associate Professor Simon Ng about the development of new military technology. They talk about the key areas of current investments, how the game is changing, and where the future might take us. They also discuss the recent investments Australia has made into autonomous systems, and explain some of the strategic calculations behind this effort.Professor Jason Scholz is the CEO of the Trusted Autonomous Systems Defence Cooperative Research Centre. Prior to this role, Jason led research in cognitive psychology, decision aids, decision automation and autonomy, and the integration of human and machine decision-making within the Defence Science and Technology Group. He has over fifty refereed publications and several patents, covering research in telecommunications, digital signal processing, artificial intelligence and human decision making. He is passionate about the potential for machine learning based on neuroscience insights, human cognitive enhancement, anti-fragile organisations and is driven to achieve the transition of validated innovative technology and techniques into Defence. Associate Professor Simon Ng is the Chief Engineer of the Trusted Autonomous Systems Defence Cooperative Research Centre. Prior to this, he led the Unmanned Aerial Systems Group within Defence Science and Technology Group’s Aerospace Division, exploring the role of autonomy in enhancing Defence capability and reducing risk in an increasingly complex operational environment. He has a Bachelor of Science and a Bachelor of Engineering from Monash University and completed his Doctoral Thesis in 1998, studying mechanisms for ionic conduction in solid polymer electrolytes.Further reading:Paul Scharre, Army of None: Autonomous Weapons and the Future of War (2018, W.W. Norton and Company).David Kilcullen, Out of the Mountains: The Coming Age of the Urban Guerrilla (2013, Scribe Publishing).MacGregor Knox and Williamson Murray, The Dynamics of Military Revolution, 1300-2050 (2001, Cambridge University Press)Stephen Biddle, Military Power: Explaining Victory and Defeat in Modern Battle (2010, Princeton University Press).Dave Grossman, On Killing: The Psychological Cost of Learning to Kill in War and Society (2009, Back Bay).The Philosopher AI App.
30 minutes | Dec 2, 2020
Autonomy in Weapons and the Law - Tim McFarland
In this episode, Dr Simon McKenzie talks with Dr Tim McFarland about autonomy in weapons systems: what it is, why it is important, and how it should be understood for the purpose of the law of armed conflict. They talk about the meaning of 'autonomy', and how the concept is used in the context of weapons systems, and what gets lost in debate about their morality and legality. They also discuss some of the legal principles that are particularly important, including distinction, proportionality and the obligation to take precautions. Dr Tim McFarland is a Research Fellow at the University of Queensland School of Law. His current research focuses on the legal challenges connected with the defence and security applications of science and technology, with a particular focus on the impact of autonomous systems. His broader research interests include the law of armed conflict and international criminal law. He is the author of Autonomous Weapon Systems and the Law of Armed Conflict (Cambridge University Press, 2020). For further readings, a basic primer on autonomy and autonomous weapons systems, and links to some further resources, are available on our website.
33 minutes | Nov 23, 2020
LFW Explainer: Brereton Report into alleged Australian war crimes with Eve Massingham and Rain Liivoja
In this episode, Dr Simon McKenzie is joined by Dr Eve Massingham and Associate Professor Rain Liivoja to grapple with the findings of the Brereton Report. The report is shocking: it found credible evidence of 39 murders of civilians and prisoners by, or on the instructions of, members of the Australian special forces which were then covered up. Simon, Eve and Rain talk about the context of the Report and the allegations, and the potential consequences for the individuals who allegedly carried out these acts. They explain what war crimes are and how they differ from domestic crimes, the concept of command responsibility, and what the sentence for any conviction might be. They also how the Australian government might respond to the wrongdoing and ensure the Afghan victims receive justice.Rain Liivoja is an Associate Professor at The University of Queensland Law School, where he leads the Law and the Future of War research group. Rain also holds the title of Adjunct Professor of International Law at the University of Helsinki, where he is affiliated with the Erik Castrén Institute of International Law and Human Rights.Eve Massingham is a Senior Research Fellow at The University of Queensland Law School. Eve's current research focuses on the diverse ways in which the law constrains or enables autonomous functions of military platforms, systems and weapons. She is the co-editor of Ensuring Respect for International Humanitarian Law (Routledge, 2020) and she has published a number of book chapters and journal articles in the fields of international humanitarian law and international law and the use of force. Further reading:The Inspector-General of the Australian Defence Force Afghanistan Inquiry (The Brereton Report)Eve Massingham, 'Australian Special Forces War Crimes Prosecutions: Crucial but Just One Aspect When It Comes to Respect for the Laws of War' Opinio Juris (20 November 2020)Douglas Guilfoyle, 'Australian war crimes in Afghanistan: The Brereton Report' EJIL!Talk (23 November 2020)David Letts, ‘Allegations of murder and ‘blooding’ in Brereton report now face many obstacles to prosecution’ The Conversation (19 November 2020)Matthew Doran, 'Afghanistan war crimes report released by Defence Chief Angus Campbell includes evidence of 39 murders by special forces' ABC Australia (19 November 2020)Christopher Knaus and Rory Callinan, ''We expected better from Australia': shock and anger in Afghanistan at war crimes report' The Guardian (20 November 2020)Rain Liivoja, Criminal Jurisdiction Over Armed Forces Abroad (Cambridge University Press, 2017)
39 minutes | Nov 18, 2020
Nuclear Weapons Ban Treaty and Australia - Anna Hood and Monique Cormier
In this episode Dr Simon McKenzie talks with Dr Anna Hood and Dr Monique Cormier to discuss the attempt to ban the most destructive weapons in the Nuclear Weapons Ban Treaty. They talk about how the treaty works, who has signed up, and the value of the treaty given that no nuclear weapon states have signed up. They also explore its history, and how it connects to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.Australia did not participate in the negotiations for the Nuclear Ban Treaty and has not become a State party. They discuss why the rationale that has been given for this refusal, and explain what is meant by the "nuclear umbrella" and "extended nuclear deterrence," and how it relates to the joint military facility at Pine Gap and the ANZUS treaty.Dr Anna Hood is a Senior Lecturer at the University of Auckland. Anna is a public international lawyer. She has a BA/LLB (hons) from the University of Melbourne, an LLM (International Legal Studies) from NYU and a PhD from the University of Melbourne. Anna's work focuses primarily on disarmament law, refugee law and issues concering New Zealand and international law. She also has a keen interest in legal education and the role of universities in the 21st century.Dr Monique Cormier is a Lecturer at the University of New England. Monique has Bachelor of International Studies and Bachelor of Laws (hons) from the University of Adelaide, an LLM from Columbia University, and a PhD from the University of Melbourne. Monique's primary research interests are jurisdiction, defences and immunities in international criminal law and on legal issues relating to nuclear disarmament and extended nuclear deterrence.Suggested further reading:Anna Hood and Monique Cormier, 'Can Australia Join the Nuclear Ban Treaty Without Undermining ANZUS?' (2020) 44(1) Melbourne University Law Review.Monique Cormier and Anna Hood, ‘Australia’s Reliance on US Extended Nuclear Deterrence under International Law' (2017) 13 Journal of International Law and International Relations 3The Pine Gap Project on the Nautilus InstituteStuart Casley-Maslen, The Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons: A Commentary (Oxford University Press, 2019)Treasa Dunworth and Anna Hood (eds), Disarmament Law: Reviving the Field (Routledge, 2021).The research of Richard Tanter
33 minutes | Nov 5, 2020
The Basics of the Weapons Law in Armed Conflict - Eve Massingham
In this episode, Isabelle Peart talks with Dr Eve Massingham about the operation of weapons law in armed conflict. They talk about the definition of a 'weapon', and how international law regulates them in two ways: prohibitions on specific weapons, and general prohibitions covering weapons that have certain effects. They also talk about the role that the idea of 'humanity' plays in the law of war, . Dr Eve Massingham is a Senior Research Fellow with the School of Law, The University of Queensland. Eve's current research focuses on the diverse ways in which the law constrains or enables autonomous functions of military platforms, systems and weapons. She is the co-editor of Ensuring Respect for International Humanitarian Law (Routledge, 2020) and she has published a number of book chapters and journal articles in the fields of international humanitarian law and international law and the use of force.
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