Courtesy Reuters
Foreign Affairs From The Anthology: From the Archives: International Institutions
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The New World Court

THE United States of America and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, which had not given their support to the old World Court, will participate in maintaining the new one. The fact warrants hope for a significant advance in the pacific settlement of international disputes. Fifty states of the world now essay a fresh effort in a movement which has been in progress for a century and a half. In contrast with the Covenant of the League of Nations, the Charter of the United Nations ascribes a place of eminence to the World Court. The principal theme of the Charter is the maintenance of international peace and security, and the Court is conceived to have a rôle in the discharge of this function. It is therefore listed as one of the principal organs of the United Nations and characterized as its principal judicial organ. The Statute of the Court is made an integral part of the Charter. Hence all Members of the United Nations will, by the very fact of membership, be parties to the Statute.

The conception of the judicial process as one of the methods of bringing about the peaceful settlement of disputes does not exaggerate the part which a court may play. Experience has shown that judges on the bench, operating within the severe limitations of the judicial process, can deal effectively with certain types of disputes between states. So long as the disputants are willing to live within the law, a court can supply solutions which will bring an end to their controversy. To that extent, it can serve as a bulwark of friendly relations. If situations arise in which states wish to go outside the law, however, other agencies are needed, manned by men who are not restricted by judicial limitations, who are accustomed to gauging currents of public opinion, and who possess sufficient authority to bring about the results which the community interest may require.

An appreciation of this need led the framers of

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