26 - Customary international law, Congress and the courts: origins of the later-in-time rule  pp. 531-559

Customary international law, Congress and the courts: origins of the later-in-time rule

By William S. Dodge

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Introduction

Transnational law, in Philip Jessup's classic definition, is ‘all law which regulates actions or events that transcend national frontiers’. This means that transnational law includes not only international law but much domestic law, and since international and domestic law often bear on the same subjects, questions about their relationship frequently arise. In the United States today, the relationship between Federal statutes and international law is well settled. According to section 115 of the Restatement (Third) of Foreign Relations Law of the United States, ‘An act of Congress supersedes an earlier rule of international law or a provision of an international agreement as law of the United States if the purpose of the act to supersede the earlier rule or provision is clear or if the act and the earlier rule or provision cannot be fairly reconciled’. US courts will interpret Federal statutes to avoid such violations, but in cases of clear conflict the later-in-time prevails.

It has not always been thus. At the time of the framing, the common understanding was that treaties were ‘beyond the lawful reach of legislative acts’. John Jay explained in The Federalist that as the consent of two nations was required to make treaties, ‘so must it ever afterwards be to alter or cancel them’. In a 2001 article, Detlev Vagts traced the judicial origins of the later-in-time rule for treaties to the mid-nineteenth century.

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Reference Title: Books

Reference Type: bibliography

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Reference Title: Articles

Reference Type: bibliography

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‘The Proposed Expatriation Tax. A Human Rights Violation?’, American Journal of International Law, 89 (1995), 578–80
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‘Bär and Karrer. Connecting Two Legal Systems’, in N. Vogt (ed.), The International Practice of Law. Liber Amicorum for Thomas Bär and Robert Karrer (Basel: Helbing & Lichtenhahn, 1997), 247–62
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‘Professional Responsibility in Transborder Practice. Conflict and Resolution’, Georgetown Journal of Legal Ethics, 13 (2000), 677–98
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‘Trial and Sentencing of Prisoners of War’, Financial Times, 30 November 2001
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‘Carl Schmitt in Context. Reflections on a Symposium’, Cardozo Law Review, 23 (2002), 2157–63
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‘Litigating the Nazi Labor Claims. The Path not Taken’, Harvard Journal of International Law, 43 (2002), 503–31 (with Peter Murray ), German trans., Zeitschrift für Zivilprozessrecht International, 7 (2002), 333–68
‘Ajuri v. IDF Commander in West Bank. Case No. HCJ 7015/02’, American Journal of International Law, 97 (2003), 173–5
‘Extraterritoriality and the Corporate Governance Law’, American Journal of International Law, 97 (2003), 289–94
‘The Ideology and Politics of American Tort Litigation’, Bitburger Gespräche, 61 (2003), 61–70
‘The UN Norms for Transnational Corporations’, Leiden Journal of International Law, 16 (2003), 795–802
‘Which Courts Should Try Persons Accused of Terrorism?’, European Journal of International Law, 14 (2003), 313–26
‘International Relations Looks at Customary International Law. A Traditionalist's Defence’, European Journal of International Law, 15 (2004), 1031–40
‘Restricting Business in the Public Interest’, Europarecht, 1 (2004) 51–60
‘Sovereign Bankruptcy, In re Germany (1963), In re Iraq (2004)’, American Journal of International Law, 98 (2004), 302–6
‘Speaking Law to Power. Lawyers and Torture’, American Journal of International Law, 98 (2004), 689–95 (with Richard Bilder )
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‘The Governance of the Multinational’, Wisconsin International Law Journal, 23 (2005), 525–40
‘Military Commission Law’, The Army Lawyer, 47 (December 2005), 47–53 (with Eugene Fidell and Dwight Sullivan )
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‘International Economic Law and the American Journal of International Law’, American Journal of International Law, 100 (2006), 769–82
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‘Political Threats to Overseas Scholars’, Fletcher Forum, 32 (2008), 181–8
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‘Foreword to the Backlash against Investment Arbitration’, in M. Waibel , A. Kaushal , K.-H. L. Chung and C. Balchin (eds.), The Backlash against Investment Arbitration. Perceptions and Reality (The Hague: Kluwer Law International, 2010), xxiii–xxvi.

Reference Title: Book reviews

Reference Type: bibliography

‘ Heinrich Kronstein and Carsten Claussen , Publizität und Gewinnverteilung im neuen Akienrecht’, Harvard Law Review, 75 (1962), 1046–51
‘ Robert Campbell , Accounting in Soviet Planning and Management’, Harvard Law Review, 77 (1964), 590–5
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‘ M. Steinberg , Corporate Internal Affairs. A Corporate and Securities Law Perspective’, Journal of Corporate Law, 10 (1985), 551–2
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Reference Title: Tributes

Reference Type: bibliography

‘ Leo Gross (1903–90)’, American Journal of International Law, 85 (1991), 149–50
‘ Louis Loss ’, Harvard Law Review, 111 (1998), 2144–6
‘ David Westfall ’, Harvard Law Review, 119 (2006), 956–8
‘ Louis Sohn ’, Harvard Journal of International Law, 48 (2007), 19–21