Mary Ellen O'Connell

About/Bio

Mary Ellen O'Connell is the Robert and Marion Short Professor of Law and is Research Professor of International Dispute Resolution—Kroc Institute, University of Notre Dame. O’Connell’s research is in the areas of international law on the use of force and international legal theory.

Recently Published

Unlawful Reprisals to the Rescue against Chemical Attacks?

Donald Trump has threatened Syria with a ‘big price to pay’ for an alleged chemical attack on 7 April in a Damascus suburb. Last year, in similar circumstances, Trump authorized an attack of 59 Tomahawk missiles that reportedly killed 9, including 4 children. The French and German governments responded with a joint press release finding it a ‘just…

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Remote-Controlled Killing in Dallas

On 8 July 2016, most likely for the first time in history, Dallas, Texas police used a remotely piloted land vehicle — a type of drone — to bomb a criminal suspect to death. When asked whether the bombing was justified, a former Los Angeles police captain said yes: "This was not a conventional police operation. This…

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On Judging v. Legislating in the International Legal System

Gleider Hernández’s impressive book updates Hersch Lauterpacht’s 1933 classic, The Function of Law in the International Community.  Despite Lauterpacht’s more general title, his focus, like Gleider’s, was on adjudication of international law in the international community.  Lauterpacht makes a case for courts as critical institutions of international law.  He responds to concerns of his day…

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