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The Wizard: Why, anybody can have a brain. That's a very mediocre commodity! Every pusillanimous creature that crawls on the earth or slinks through slimy seas has a brain! Back where I come from, we have universities, seats of great learning where men go to become great thinkers. And when they come out, they think deep thoughts and with no more brains than you have. But! They have one thing you haven't got! A diploma! Therefore, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Universita Committeeatum E Pluribus Unum, I hereby confer upon you the honorary degree of Th.D.
Scarecrow: "Th.D."?
The Wizard: That's, er, "Doctor of Thinkology".

Para-States

  1. Abkhazia
  2. Azawad
  3. Boko Haram
  4. Catalonia
  5. Cyrenaica
  6. Donetsk
  7. Faroe Islands
  8. Galmudug
  9. Islamic Emirate of
    Afghanistan
  10. Jubaland
  11. Kachin State
  12. Karen State
  13. Khatumo
  14. Kurdistan
  15. Logone
  16. Luhansk
  17. Nagorno-Karabakh
  18. New Caledonia
  19. Northern Cyprus
  20. Novorossiya
  21. Puerto Rico
  22. Puntland
  23. Quebec
  24. Republika Srpska
  25. Scotland
  26. Shan State
  27. Somaliland
  28. South Ossetia
  29. Southern Cameroons
  30. South Yemen
  31. Transdniester
  32. Western Sahara

A para-state is a region that seeks or claims but does not have the status of a recognized independent state. Many para-state groups, illegal within their own country or territory, seek international recognition at the Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization (UNPO), a non-governmental organization headquartered in The Hague.

At the dawn of the 21st Century, the international system consisted of nearly two hundred "states" generally recognized as such, and several dozen other entities that possessed all the attributes of statehood, apart from diplomatic recognition by a meaningful number of other states. Not all states recognize each other, as many microstates lack the means of motive for conducting relations with an appreciable number of other states. Not all states are recognized: Kosovo and Palestine are recognized by no more than half the other states.

Under the Montevideo Convention on the Rights and Duties of States, done at Montevideo 26 December 1933, " Article 1 - The state as a person of international law should possess the following qualifications: a. a permanent population;
b. a defined territory;
c. government; and
d. capacity to enter into relations with the other states.
....
Article 3 - The political existence of the state is independent of recognition by the other states. Even before recognition the state has the right to defend its integrity and independence, to provide for its conservation and prosperity, and consequently to organize itself as it sees fit, to legislate upon its interests, administer its services, and to define the jurisdiction and competence of its courts.
Article 4 - States are juridically equal, enjoy the same rights, and have equal capacity in their exercise. The rights of each one do not depend upon the power which it possesses to assure its exercise, but upon the simple fact of its existence as a person under international law.
Article 11 - The contracting states definitely establish as the rule of their conduct the precise obligation not to recognize territorial acquisitions or special advantages which have been obtained by force whether this consists in the employment of arms, in threatening diplomatic representations, or in any other effective coercive measure. "

When Jessup, the representative of the United States to the United Nations argued for Israel's admission, he discussed the requirement of territory in the following manner: "The reason for the rule that one of the necessary attributes of a State is that it shall possess territory is that one cannot contemplate a State as a kind of disembodied spirit .... [T]here must be some portion of the earth's surface which its people inhabit and over which its Government exercises authority..."

A state as a person of international law should possess the following qualifications:

  1. permanent population
  2. defined territory
  3. government
  4. the capacity to enter into relations with the other states
  5. recognition by a preponderance of other states

Para-states may be said to possess all these attributes, apart from general recognition as states by the international community. Para-states lack the diploma of international recognition.

Max Weber, the great German sociologist, remarked that government possesses the legitimate monopoly on the use of force in a society. The people grant the state express and significant powers to use coercion against citizens and institutions to provide for the common security and the safety and dignity of the individuals in society. The state uses force and coercion in some of its most extreme forms, such as war.

Para-states surely possess these attributes, along with other trappings of sovereignty such as a flag and printed currency. But their atheletes do not compete in the Olympics under their own flag. These para-states eke out an existence in the nether world between actual no kidding states, and militant outfits that aspire to seizing state power.

The 21st Century is post-Westphalian with, new political units and institutions. The Westphalian system of law emerged at the end of the Thirty Years War (1648). By the Westphalian peace, which decreed the coexistence of popery and protestantism on equal terms, the state was totally separated from the church.

A federal state constitutes a sole person in the eyes of international law. The political existence of a state is independent of recognition by the other states. Even before recognition a state has the right to defend its integrity and independence, to provide for its conservation and prosperity, and consequently to organize itself as it sees fit, to legislate upon its interests, administer its services, and to define the jurisdiction and competence of its courts. The exercise of these rights has no other limitation than the exercise of the rights of other states according to international law.

States are juridically equal, enjoy the same rights, and have equal capacity in their exercise. The rights of each one do not depend upon the power which it possesses to assure its exercise, but upon the simple fact of its existence as a person under international law. The fundamental rights of states are not susceptible of being affected in any manner whatsoever.

The recognition of a state merely signifies that the state which recognizes it accepts the personality of the other with all the rights and duties determined by international law. Recognition is unconditional and irrevocable. The recognition of a state may be express or tacit. The latter results from any act which implies the intention of recognizing the new state.

It was not always thus. The laws of the mediaeval ruler inevitably interreflected the character of their claims. Monarchs claimed the allegiance of the world and monarchs who were proud to be styled the kings of particular races paid small heed to land limits as the bounds of jurisdiction. The laws of particular districts were rather the laws of a people than the laws of a locality. Rulers fought incessantly for lands and tribute, but territoriality was in the administration of civil justice subordinated to the consideration of the person. So the International Law of the Middle Ages was not first and foremost an inter-territorial law.

A feudal sovereign, passing through the territory of his neighbour with a sufficient guard, would not hesitate to exercise therein the functions sovereigns of sovereignty, at least over his own subjects; on the other hand, the local ruler was ever ready, in contempt of modern notions of the claims of courtesy, to lay hands upon a foreign sovereign, who came within his reach without passport and unaccompanied by force to protect himself.

The Westphalian state system developed from the establishment of sovereign powers within the confines of borderlines recognized by international agreements. During the construction of the modern state, the nationalist period resulted in the development of center-periphery economies and polities. Today, however, globalization appears to make borders irrelevant in many ways. These include changes in the environment that transcend the archaic territorial focus that is implicit in the Westphalian state system.

The Westphalian system sought stability by respecting the sovereignty of the state. It only regulated the use of force between states. Over time, it became increasingly restrictive on the legitimate use of force, culminating in the Kellogg-Briand Pact of 1928, which limited it to self defense. Then, as internal wars superseded international wars as the primary form of violence in the global security system, this legal framework became less helpful.






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