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Intermediate Law of Armed Conflict Course Welcome to the Distance Learning phase of the Intermediate Law of Armed Conflict course. As a Canadian Forces member, you are about to begin a very important component of your development as an officer or as an NCM. It has been designed to give you the right tools to address the complexities of today's battlefield. It will require time and dedication on your part but it will undoubtedly expand your appreciation of the legal considerations embedded within the planning and execution of military operations in the full spectrum of conflicts. During the classroom portion of the course, there will be lectures, syndicate discussions and exercises. The syndicate activities will require some individual preparation, most of which will occur on the evening prior to the activity. Furthermore, you can anticipate a moderate workload in the evenings in order to prepare the following day. The syndicate discussions and exercises will be lead by a legal officer who will act as a DS. The regular CFC DS are not required to prepare any formal contribution, but they will be provided with all the course material and will be welcomed to actively participate in the discussions and exercises. General Description of LOAC Courses Program Rationale for the Course and Context of its Development This course has been designed to deliver a graduate standard of LOAC training to CF leaders, in order to prepare them to conduct operational missions in a lawful manner, having in mind the CDS stated end-state for transformation: A CF that is strategically relevant, operationally responsive and tactically decisive, supported by an effective, efficient and adaptable defence institution; capable of operating within a dynamic and evolving security spectrum. It also supports the JAGs stated strategy, which emanates from the vision that justice be done in the defence of Canada" and embodies a value system that fosters respect for human rights and international humanitarian law. Description of the ILOAC Course Structure, Expectations, Time Management Planning and Sequence of Phases The Intermediate LOAC course is comprised of two phases, a Distance Learning (DL) phase followed by an in-residence phase. The Distance Learning phase of the ILOAC is a pre-requisite for the attendance to the residence phase that


concludes the ILOAC course. In class, we will deepen and expand the notions already covered through lectures and panels, syndicate exercises and discussions. As you progress through the DL phase, you will be exposed to mandatory readings, informative films and illustrative videos. It is essential that you invest sufficient quality time in this personal work. The residence phase needs to be thoroughly prepared in order for you to contribute meaningfully to the lectures, discussions and exercises. You should expect the DL phase to take approximately five hours of constant attention. During this phase, you will also have access to supplementary readings that would not only prepare you further for the residence phase, but also constitute an excellent personal reference library. These texts and references reflect the state of the law, current debates and emerging areas of interest. The completion of the Distance Learning will allow you to register for the five-day residence portion of the ILOAC course. Upon completion, you will have 12 months to register through your unit, formation training officer, or CFMLC. The details of the registration process will be given to you at the end of the DL phase. Introduction to Module 1 LOAC Key concepts In this module, we will examine the general concepts that are essential to understand the nature and the scope of LOAC. It also covers the key definitions and rules governing the applicability of the various bodies of the LOAC. These questions are instrumental in determining which rules will apply to a given CF international operation. The module will be concluded by the video "Fighting by the Rules, which shows how LOAC has to be applied during various types of conflicts as well as the importance of LOAC training. International Law International law is the body of law, which governs relations between sovereign states. It is a system of rules and principles created primarily by states, which cover almost every facet of inter-state activity. It is the vital mechanism without which an increasingly interdependent world could not function. International law deals with issues such as nationality, the use of armed force and the human rights of individuals. The practice of International Law is directly related to diplomacy, politics and the conduct of foreign relations.From: LOAC OP/TAC Level


Description and Purpose The LOAC1 has been defined as the body of international law which sets out rules of behaviour in an armed conflict. It sets out minimum standards applicable to the conduct of hostilities designed to limit unnecessary human suffering, ensure respect for human dignity, and facilitate the restoration of peace.2 International law includes both treaty law and customary international law. From a CF perspective, the relevant treaty law of the LOAC is identified in the CF publication B-GG-005-027/AF-022, Collection of the Documents on the Law of Armed Conflict. Key treaties include the Hague Conventions,3 the Geneva Conventions,4 the Additional Protocols to the Geneva Conventions,5 as well as key weapons control treaties such as the Ottawa Convention6 and the Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons.7References See William Fenrick, The Development of the Law of Armed Conflict through the Jurisprudence of the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (1998) 3 Jn of Armed Conflict 197; McCoubrey, International Humanitarian Law: The Regulation of Armed Conflicts (Aldershot: Dartmouth Publishing Company Limited, 1990); Fleck, The Handbook of Humanitarian Law in Armed Conflicts (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1995); McCoubrey and White, International Law and Armed Conflict (Aldershot: Dartmouth Publishing Company Limited, 1992); Dinstein, The Conduct of Hostilities in International Armed Conflict, 3rd ed. (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2004); Bothe et al., New Rules for Victims of Armed Conflicts: Commentary on the Two 1977 Protocols Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 1949 (The Hague and Boston: M. Nijhoff, 1982); Rogers, Law on the Battlefield, 2nd ed (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 2004).2 1

See B-GG-005-027/AF-023, Code of Conduct for CF Personnel, p. 1-2.

Hague Conventions of 1907, 18 October 1907: Convention III Relative to the Opening of Hostilities, Convention IV Respecting the Laws and Customs of War on Land, Convention V Respecting the Rights and Duties of Neutral Powers and Persons in Case of War on Land, (VI) Relating to the Status of Enemy Merchant Ships at the Outbreak of Hostilities, (VII) Relating to the Conversion of Merchant Ships Into Warships, Convention VIII Relative to the Laying of Automatic Submarine Contact Mines, Convention IX Concerning Bombardment by Naval Forces in Time of War, Convention XI Relative to Certain Restrictions with Regard to the Exercise of the Right of Capture in Naval War, Convention XIII Concerning the Rights and Duties of Neutral Powers in Naval War and Convention XIV Prohibiting the Discharge of Projectiles and Explosives from Balloons. Geneva Convention for the Amelioration of the Condition of the Wounded and Sick in Armed Forces in the Field of August 12, 1949, 12 August 1949, 75 U.N.T.S. 31; Geneva Convention for the Amelioration of the Condition of the Wounded, Sick and Shipwrecked Members of Armed at Sea of August 12, 1949, 12 August 1949, 75 U.N.T.S. 85; Geneva Convention Relative to the Treatment of Prisoners of War of August 12, 1949, 12 August 1949, 75 U.N.T.S. 135; Geneva Convention Relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War of August 12, 1949, 12 August 1949, 75 U.N.T.S. 287.4



Protocol Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949, and relating to the protection of victims of international armed conflicts (Protocol I), 6 August 1977, [AP I]; Protocol Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949, and relating to the protection of victims of international armed conflicts (Protocol II), 6 August 1977[AP II]. Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of AntiPersonnel Mines and on their Destruction, 18 September 1997, 2056 U.N.T.S. 211. 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, 10 October 1980, 1342 U.N.T.S. 137.7 6


Origins Writers delve back through the history of centuries to the ancient civilizations of India and Egypt to find in their writings evidence of practices intended to alleviate the sufferings of war. This evidence is to be found in agreements and treaties, in the works of religions leaders and philosophers, in regulations and articles of war issued by military leaders and in the rules of chivalry.1 It is said that the first systematic code of war was that of the Saracens and was based on the Koran.2 The writers of the Age of Enlightenment, notably Grotius3 and Vattel,4 were especially influential. It has been suggested that more humane rules were able to flourish in the period of limited wars from 1648 to 1792 but that they then came under pressure in the drift towards continental warfare, the concept of the nation in arms and the increasing destructiveness of weapons from 1792 to 1914.5 Efforts had to be made in the middle of the last century to re-impose on war limits, which up to that time had been based on custom and usage.6References1

I. Detter, The Law of War, 2nd ed, Cambridge University Press, 2000, pp. 151-4.


See R.C. Algase, Protection