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Soc 235, Lecture 20

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Ron Jacobs

on 25 August 2014

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Transcript of Soc 235, Lecture 20

Main points from previous lecture Civil society developed during the period of first modernity
International system of nation states, international law
Fusion of citizen and nation Globalization has brought about a “second modernity”
Weakening of national boundaries, rise of transnational connections
Discourse of human rights challenges international law, principle of national sovereignty New dynamics of power and counter power
Cosmopolitan values vs. defensive nationalism, fake cosmopolitanism Questions for Today How does the discourse of human rights connect to other discourses? How do other states react when the discourse of human rights is mobilized? What kinds of legal frameworks are used to try to enforce a discourse of human rights? What do the power and counter-power of cosmopolitan values look like in a concrete case? Augusto Pinochet Leader of Chile 1973-1990 Took power in a US supported military coup against the socialist leadership of the nation Massive violence against political opponents, with about 2000 murdered and more than 30000 tortured Arrested while staying in England in 1998, for human rights violations
Charges brought by a Spanish judge
Placed under house arrest
Case dropped in 2000, due to Pinochet's poor health How did other states react,
What discourse was used? In England, politicians debated whether Pinochet was entitled to diplomatic immunity, given the fact that he still had an official position in Chile Ultimately, the decision was that diplomatic immunity did not apply in instances where human rights had been violated result of intense lobbying by INGO's In Chile, legislators passed a law granting Pinochet the title of “ex-president”, as an attempt to reinforce his diplomatic immunity within the system of international law democratic legislation had previously granted Pinochet immunity, as part of an agreement where he would allow democratic elections Forces of cosmopolitan values "borrow" state coercion from England, to try to enforce international laws about human rights England ignores Chilean arguments about national sovereignty, but they do so based on the logic of first modernity, i.e., they do not apply in the UK, where Pinochet was currently residing ultimately, the British courts decide to extradite Pinochet to Spain to face an international tribunal, but, the court decision to extradite was based on a narrow distinction between acting and former heads of state What did power and counter-power look like in the case? Cosmopolitan power International civil society organizations: organized public protests, filed briefs for court hearings, releasing press reports for global media Global media: give support to the arguments that states
should act as the enforcers of global human justice Counter-power, “fake cosmopolitanism” Tony Blair, Prime Minister of UK, suggests that British support for Pinochet comes from his Tory opponents Counter power, defensive nationalism Margaret Thatcher, former Prime Minister of UK, criticizes the Tory Party for cowardly bowing to global forces, rather than recognizing the special relationship that Pinochet had with UK and with anti-communism
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