Introduction to the Terminology of Use Force and Self-Defence


The crisis in the Middle-East Asia between Israel and Lebanon has become a hot issue in every newspaper, magazine, journal or in society daily conversation. A lot of article addressing that Israel should be responsible for their action that caused huge damage in the cities of Lebanon. Even some practitioner had given opinion that Israel shall be dragged into International Court because they not obey the International Convention and International Law. But, in their opinions there still occurs of contrary and debatable opinion whether Israel shall be punishing for their armed attack in International Criminal Justice (ICJ) or International Criminal Court (ICC).

For this argumentation, we shall refer to United Nation Charter that lays down the regulation for the state to use a force [Art. 2(4)] to maintain international peace and security or using self-defence [Art. 51] to protect their people sovereignty.

After read these several articles above, I’m sure you will make a good hypothesis and conclusion for that debatable opinions. I hope it will make a clearly explanation whether Israel, if only they proved to used an illegal action, should be dragged into ICJ or ICC.




Article 1

The purposes of the United Nations are:

  1. To maintain international peace and security, and to that end: to take effective collective measures for the prevention and removal of threat to the peace, and for the suppression of acts of aggression or other breaches of the peace, and to bring about by peaceful means, and in conformity with the principles of justice and international law, adjustment or settlement of international disputes or situations which might lead to a breach of the peace;
  2. To develop friendly relations among nations based on respect for the principle of equal rights and self-determination of peoples, and so take other appropriate measures to strengthen universal peace;
  3. To achieve international cooperation in solving international problems of an economic, social, cultural, or humanitarian character, and in promoting and encouraging respect for human rights and for fundamental freedoms for all without distinction as to race, sex, language, or religion; and
  4. To be a center for harmonizing the actions of nations in the attainment of these common ends.

Article 2

The Organization and its Members, in pursuit of the Purpose stated in Article 1, shall act in accordance with the following Principles:

  1. The Organization is based on the principle of the sovereign equality of its Members.
    All Members, in order to ensure to all of them the rights and benefits resulting from membership, shall fulfill in good faith the obligations assumed by them in accordance with the pursuit with the present Charter.
  2. All Members shall settle their international disputes by peaceful means in such a manner that international peace and security, and justice, are not endangered.
  3. All Members shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use force against the territorial integrity or political independent of any state or any other manner consistent with the Purposes of the United Nations.
  4. All Members shall give the United Nations every assistance in any action it takes in accordance with the present Charter, and shall refrain from giving assistance to any state against which the United Nations is taking preventive or enforcement action.
  5. The Organization shall ensure that states which are not Members of the United Nations act in accordance with these Principles so far as may be necessary for the maintenance of international peace and security.
  6. Nothing contain in the present Charter shall authorized the United Nations to intervene in matters which are essentially within the domestic jurisdiction of any state or shall require the Members to submit such matters to settlement under the present Charter; but this principle shall not prejudice the application of enforcement measures under Chapter VII.



Article 51

Nothing in present Charter shall impair the inherent right of individual or collective self-defence if an armed attack occurs against a Member of the United Nations, until the Security Council has taken measures necessary to maintain international peace and security, Measures taken by Members in the exercise of this right of self-defence shall be immediately reported to the Security Council and shall not in any way affect the authority and responsibility of the Security Council under the present Charter to take at any time such action as it deems necessary in order to maintain or restore international peace and security.

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