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Library blog

These blogs are written by the librarians of the Peace Palace Library. All blogs are dealing with subjects on International Law. Every blog contains links and references to the collection of the Peace Palace Library.

  • Brexit, Yellow Vests and Subsidiarity

    January 17, 2019

    A spectre of discontent is haunting Europe. Brexit and the yellow vests are symbolising the anger of citizens at the EU. The feelings of dissatisfaction are fuelled by the paradox that global companies are hardly paying any taxes within the EU, whereas the citizens are increasingly confronted with higher burdens, notably with more VAT, longer working years and rises in indirect taxes. At the same time, the EU has achieved unprecedented results. It has created an area of freedom, security and justice for its citizens, which is unique in the world.

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  • Grotiana

    Grotiana, Volume 39 (2018)

    January 10, 2019

    New issue. Grotiana appears under the auspices of the Grotiana Foundation. The journal’s leading objective is the furtherance of the Grotian tradition. It welcomes any relevant contribution to a better understanding of Grotius’ life and works. At the same time close attention will be paid to Grotius’ relevance for present-day thinking about world problems. Grotiana therefore intends to be a forum for exchanges concerning the philosophical, ethical and legal fundamentals of the search for an international order. The Library contributes with a bibliography on Grotius.

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  • Japan resumes Commercial Whaling

    January 3, 2019

    Japan will officially withdraw from the International Whaling Commission (IWC), with the intention to resume commercial whaling in its territorial waters and exclusive economic zone (EEZ) in July 2019. Commercial whaling was banned under a 1986 International Whaling Commission moratorium. But Japan has used a loophole to continue hunting whales legally since 1987 for what it claims is scientific research. So the international agreement never stopped Japanese whaling, because it allowed the country to continue killing whales for scientific research while selling the meat. Iceland and Norway object to the moratorium and continue to hunt whales commercially without relying on science as an excuse.

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  • All I want for Christmas is … Peace!

    December 21, 2018

    Peace is an elusive thing. Everyone wants peace, yet few seem to actually possess it in any substantive form. For many, the attraction of the Christmas season is the momentary fulfillment of that dream, the wonderful moment of ‘Peace on Earth’. For one night, it seems possible. As Christmas approaches, we experience a sense of ‘Peace on Earth’. The Peace Palace upholds the ideal of ‘Peace through Law’: resolving international conflicts by means of international adjudication. Some reading suggestions on this topic from your Library for the coming Christmas season. Happy Christmas!

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  • The Declaration of Christmas Peace

    December 21, 2018

    A Declaration of Christmas Peace is announced in several Finnish cities on Christmas Eve. The oldest and most popular event is held at noon at the Old Great Square of the former Finnish capital Turku, where the declaration has been read since the 1320s. The Declaration of Christmas Peace is a tradition which launches the Christmas celebrations and in a way marks the official start of Christmas. The exact wording used during the first few centuries of the tradition has been lost over time, but the main contents of the declaration remain the same: the declaration is read out loud to remind people that Christmas Peace has begun, to advise people to spend the festive period in harmony, to threaten offenders with harsh punishments, and to wish all a merry Christmas!

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  • Silent Night: the Remarkable Christmas Truce of 1914

    “That the Guns may Fall Silent at Least upon the Night the Angels Sang”

    December 21, 2018

    Only five months after the outbreak of the Great War in Europe, on and around Christmas Day 1914, the sounds of rifles firing and shells exploding faded in a number of places along the Western Front in favor of holiday celebrations in the trenches and gestures of goodwill between enemies. Late on Christmas Eve 1914, men of the British Expeditionary Force heard Germans troops in the trenches opposite them singing carols and patriotic songs and saw lanterns and small fir trees along their trenches. Messages began to be shouted between the trenches.

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  • The Signing of the Treaty of Ghent, December 24, 1814.

    The Peace of Christmas Eve

    December 21, 2018

    Peace is an elusive thing. For many, the attraction of the Christmas season is the momentary fulfillment of that dream, the wonderful moment of ‘Peace on Earth’. For one night, it seems possible. As Christmas approaches, we experience a sense of ‘Peace on Earth’. A few times in history, this sense of peace at Christmas had real impact on human affairs. A little known example is the the signing of the Treaty of Ghent on Christmas Eve, December 24, 1814, ending a war, the War of 1812, between the United States and the British Empire and their allies.

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  • Important Announcement: New Library Automation System

    December 21, 2018

    Dear Library users,

    From January 2nd, the Peace Palace Library will be using a new library automation system. In this item you will find how services will change for its users.

    Kind regards, the Peace Palace Library Staff

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  • Neutrality

    International Day of Neutrality

    December 13, 2018

    On de UN calendar is filled with a variety if special days on which an international relevant topic is remembered or celebrated. Some of these have been around for a long time, like the Human Rights Day, be some days have been put on the calendar more recently and are maybe less well-known. One of these recent and possibly less known days is the International Day of Neutrality, which was commemorated yesterday, 12 December. The International Day of Neutrality was recognized by the General Assembly on 2 February 2017 with Resolution 71/275.

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  • Brexit and the Solution of the EU Conundrum

    November 29, 2018

    If anything good comes from Brexit, it may well be that the bold Brexiteers have contributed inadvertently to the solution of one of the longest-standing conceptual problems of the EU, namely the conundrum concerning the nature and the purpose of the European Union. The riddle has been paralysing political thought about the EU and its predecessors for decades. Generations of theorists have argued that the EU should either become a federal state or take the shape of a confederal organisation of states. As it is obvious that today’s Union has neither assumed the form of a state nor that of an organisation of states, the conundrum appears to be perfectly insolvable.

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