Foreign Policy Conundrums With National Policies And The Legal System

Foreign Policy Conundrums With National Policies And The Legal System
Foreign policy is a phrase, which with every passing day is getting more and more weight in our political landscapes around the world. National interest is another phrase, which is often echoed around at national stages. Foreign policies ought to run on at least in modern times on popular pulses or public opinion. With that foreign policy is an area which enjoys legal immunity and hence a field which enjoy unaccountable actions and deliberations. Even international law is oblivious to a large extent to its functioning and effects. Today’s national policies are to a large portion determined by the calculations of international policies and circumstances.

This heavy reliance on foreign policy is breeding violence and at times reliance is made on tools that bring the desired public opinion. The worst part is even courts do not tend to take cognizance in matters that come under the umbrella of national interest or foreign policy. In this short essay one will find out the role of courts and what necessary steps may be taken to eradicate the misuse of terms which though important for nations but quiet often found to be used as a tool by the potentates to strengthen their rules.

We normally see people tend to raise voices against certain foreign policy matters, which states akin to their national interest and hence use unaccountable or unbridled force in the name of national interest. There are numerous instances where it is evident that states use excessive force to get the required results. Policies may cause backlash, which is then countered by the use of excessive force. In modern democracies mostly soft tools are used to bend the public opinion because that is what matters to them most but in third world countries, states rely on brutal means to get the satisfactory results.

Courts hesitate or interference is forbidden or considers to be forbidden in matters of national interests related to foreign policy and security around the world. But the courts may and should take cognizance where brutal force is used by the state to get the required results. As foretold public opinion is considered the bedrock of any policy in modern times hence states use different tools to mould the public opinion that is where the courts role comes into play by giving relief to people who have been illegally effected by these actions and freedom of expression is ensured.

Legal systems especially in third world countries have shown impotency to deal with such kind of matters and the violence goes unchecked in the name of vague policies. Courts while keeping balance should play a part to refrain the states from using illegal means to mend their ways. In today’s times many national policies are direct or indirect result of foreign policies.  Hence, the more space foreign policies will take in our political landscape the more care or checks are needed to maintain equilibrium and for preserving human rights.

With that new rules or philosophies need to develop that make these areas more accessible for public debate and judicial review. The third world countries need to learn from advanced democracies how to build public opinion without using force and with that a vigilant and sensitive judiciary that accounts or stop the illegal use of force.

The jurisdictions with independent and strong judiciary are found to have countered the illegal tactics of governments or state institutions where they were involved in curbing the legal and political rights of the people who had shown dissent to state policies. The foremost step is the building of strong judiciary, which can adhere to constitutional norms and can give justice without fear of being reprimanded. The basic idea is the establishment of a strong intermediary that ensures democratic rights and values and is sensitive to violence and lawlessness.

A very important role may also be played by the international institutions who look over the inter state relations and may force the states with available legal means to adhere to democratic norms and values. Hence considering the current environment it has become imperative for international community to give serious deliberations on this subject and develop a consensus in competing states to make ways for eradicating use of violence.

Patriotism is also attached with the foreign and national policies to make them inviolable and the use of violence is normalised with these conceptions as they give the impression of high valued goals. Such concepts need corrections, as criticism of policies that are breed of human thought may be imperfect and deserve criticism. This absolutism is problematic at many levels as it hamper the functioning of legal system with its weight that have been made heavy with cauldrons of nationalism, national interest and patriotism, which is preposterous and giving rise to imbroglio. The insistence of states and their love for national interest needed to be interpreted in a manner that makes it available for public debate and criticism.

The writer is a Barrister at Law from Lincoln's Inn, and specializes in constitutional & corporate law. He may be reached at