This week’s research guide World War II

World War II - Research Guide International Law

World War II, or the Second World War, was the global conflict lasting from 1939 to 1945, involving most of the world’s nations — including all of the great powers — eventually forming two opposing military alliances, the Allies and the Axis. It was the most widespread war in history, with more than 100 million military personnel mobilised. In a state of “total war,” the major participants placed their entire economic, industrial, and scientific capabilities at the service of the war effort, erasing the distinction between civilian and military resources.

Check our Research Guide on World War II

Library Blog

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Drones and Robots as Means of Modern Warfare

Several aspects of autonomous weapons systems and the deployment of drones during warfare will be discussed during the upcoming Peace and Security Salon: “Drones and Robots as means of modern warfare” which will be held at the Peace Palace Library on Thursday, the 9th of april. The use of drones as a weapons system has increased exponentially in recent years and this has given rise to a significant degree of controversy and a number of specific questions relating to their use. Questions which arise in relation to drones and autonomous weapons systems include whether they are in conformity with or potentially capable of complying with IHL requirements in conditions of contemporary warfare, issues of accountability and responsibility and ethical questions.

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Special collections

  • Grotius collection

    • Mare liberum
      Mare liberum

      Mare Liberum

    • DeIureBelliAcPacis_1st_state
      DeIureBelliAcPacis_1st_state

      De iure belli ac pacis libri tres (1st state) / Hugo Grotius, 1625

    • Feenstra, R. and J.B. Vervliet (eds.), Hugo Grotius Mare Liberum: 1609-2009, Leiden, Brill, 2009. [Original Latin text, facsimile of the first edition, 1609 and modern English translation]
      Feenstra, R. and J.B. Vervliet (eds.), Hugo Grotius Mare Liberum: 1609-2009, Leiden, Brill, 2009. [Original Latin text, facsimile of the first edition, 1609 and modern English translation]

      Feenstra, R. and J.B. Vervliet (eds.), Hugo Grotius Mare Liberum: 1609-2009, Leiden, Brill, 2009. [Original Latin text, facsimile of the first edition, 1609 and modern English translation]

    The Peace Palace Library in The Hague holds one of the greatest collections in the world of the works of Hugo Grotius. More about this collection »
  • Postcards

    • Postcard Peace Palace 1958
      Postcard Peace Palace 1958

      Peace Palace 1958

    • Postcard Peace Palace 1914
      Postcard Peace Palace 1914

      Peace Palace 1914

    • Postcard Peace Palace 1961
      Postcard Peace Palace 1961

      Peace Palace 1961

    Over the past century numerous postcards depicting the Peace Palace have been sent home. More about this collection ».