Module 4 – Neutrality – Terms, Models


[1] “There is no reconciling war and neutrality. Each stands in the other’s way. The reason is that they represent diametrically opposed aspirations: one contributes to the reign of force and arbitrary action; the other, to that of law, order and peace.”

[2] “The exercise of the right to remain neutral did not necessarily imply that the choice was final. A State which, at the beginning of a war, declared its neutrality, could become a belligerent at a later date if it so decided, or if it was forced into the position where belligerency became necessary. What it was forbidden to do, was to take part in the war while pretending to remain neutral.”

[3] “Neutrality when freely chosen was called voluntary, occasional, or temporary neutrality. It was distinguished from the neutrality called conventional, permanent, or perpetual, which was the status of a country bound by treaty to observe neutrality in every case, and never to undertake a war of aggression.”

[4] “Conventional neutrality can be restricted to the relations of two States alone. Such is the case of the country which, in an agreement with another country, has renounced in advance the right to choose between participation and abstention by promising to observe neutrality in the case of a war between the other contracting party and a third State. Thus…each of the parties promised to intervene in the event that the other party should be engaged in a war with two adversaries, and to remain neutral if it should be at war with just one.”

[5] “Ever since the principle of neutrality was admitted as the equal of that of war, a compromise has been sought for between the desire of neutrals to continue to live at peace with everyone, and the belligerents’ desire to be able to act without hindrance. It has been necessary to fix their respective rights and duties.”

[6] “The rights of neutrals like their duties may be summed up in two general captions: the inviolability of their territory; and the freedom of their relations among themselves and with each of the belligerents.”

[7] “In order to clarify the respective relationships of neutral and belligerent, it became the established custom…for the neutral to publish declarations of neutrality in both countries.”

[8] “In them the belligerents were informed concerning what was permitted or forbidden them, in order to prevent disputes and limit responsibilities.”

[9] “Citizens of neutral countries were also notified of the duties which were imposed upon them, and of the risks to which their actions might subject them.”

[10] “Neutrals have the right to demand that belligerents respect their territory, that they commit no histile acti within it, that they do not extend the theatre of actual warfare to include it.”

[11] [Neutrals] “have a duty towards each of the belligerents, namely, not to permit their territory to be violated by either one; if necessary, they must even oppose an attempt at such violation by force. ”

[12] Upon its side, although the belligerent is bound to respect neutral territory, it has a right to demand that the neutrals also insist upon its being respected by its enemies.”

Source: Neutrality and Peace, by Nicolas Politis; Carnegie Endowment for International Peace (1935)

[13] “An important feature of neutrality is that it does not interfere with internal sociopolitical relations; these are left to the sovereign will of the neutral state…Thus, neutrality is not system-bound. The policy of neutrality relates only to foreign relations and need not prejudge socioeconomic structures or ideological orientation.”

[14] “As a term, neutrality was generally used to designate the legal status under international law of a state that desired to avoid military involvement in a conflict between warring states;”

[15] “…a neutral state fully expected to enjoy its trading rights as well as perform various duties as an impartial onlooker.”

[16] “Neutrality may be defined as the attitude of impartiality adopted by third states toward belligerents and recognized by belligerents, such attitude creating rights and duties between the impartial states and the belligerents.”

[17] “A legally binding commitment to neutral behaviour may also be laid down in a bilateral treaty arrangement between neighbors.”

Source: Towards a New Conceptualization of Neutrality: A Strategy for Conflict Resolution in Asia, by Marek Thee, Occasional Papers Series No. 9 (Center for the Study of Armament and Disarmament, California State University, Los Angeles, CA)

 [18] “Cultural neutrality is achieved through an operationalized “attitude of impartiality.” Everybody has one or more cultures, and everyone is embroiled in or affected by related intercultural conflict. The CultureNeutral® Framework is a system of thought and action that provides a manageable space in which to disengage from needless intercultural conflicts, and better manage a wide range of normal conflict by applying the principle of neutrality personally, in our families, workplaces, communities, and citizenships.”

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