Introduction to the Law of War

In the following hypothetical, in 1500 words or less, identify three potential violations of International Humanitarian Law (IHL) (there are more than three but you can choose three). Discuss (1) why this action is problematic in relation to the four main principles of IHL (distinction, necessity, humanity, proportionality) and (2) whether or not in the specific facts of this case you conclude that this action is a violation of IHL or not.

Bonus points if you list (you do not need to explain each one like the first three) other violations of IHL you find in the hypothetical. No points will be lost, but an extra 2 points will be gained for each extra violation you point out. There will also be an extra 1 point awarded if you can point to the specific Treaty that the prohibition on the action is found in.

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After many years of growing tension an international armed conflict erupts between the State of Asado and the State of Panacotta. Asado’s military is led by Captain Bacon while Panacotta’s military is led by Commander Milky.

Knowing that Panacotta could not target a school, Captain Bacon decides to set up one of their bases inside Shepherd’s Pie Elementary School in the Nacknick neighborhood where thirty families live. As Fighter Pilot Hallumi flies over the Nacknick area, he sees military personnel and ammunition going in and out of the school he also gets intelligence that the Asado-ians have closed the school to not let children in. Pilot Hallumi decides to target the school, but rather than focusing and aiming one bomb directly onto Shepherd’s Pie Elementary School, Hallumi thinks to himself, “Eh, I’m tired, I’ll just drop a bunch of bombs, one of them will surely hit the school.” Hallumi drops the bombs and then flies back to the base in Panacotta. Angry about his neighborhood being bombed, Kebab (a simple farmer in Nacknick) runs out of his house with a shotgun, runs to the border and starts shooting at Panacotta troops, he kills a soldier, Cottage. Panacotta troops return fire and Kebab is killed.

Sniper Gouda sets up a lookout from a hill and sees Deputy Commander Entrecote eating dinner in a tuxedo in a fancy restaurant with an unidentified woman. Captain Labane orders the sniper to take out the target. Sniper Gouda shoots and kills Deputy Commander Entrecote and since he is unsure about the status of the woman, he decides to shoot and kill her as well just to be safe. Mad about the death of Deputy Commander Entrecote, Captain Shnitzel orders a bomb to be dropped on Captain Labane’s garden to kill all of his prize-winning flowers and on the park next to Captain Labane’s house that is a recognized UN Cultural Heritage site.

During a particularly devastating battle, Asado troops decide their only strategy is to pretend to surrender. Captain Bacon waives the white flag of surrender and when Panacotta troops come closer with their weapons down to discuss the terms of the surrender, Captain Bacon yells “NOW!” and Asado troops begin attacking Panacotta troops. In the course of the battle, Commander Milky is rendered unconscious so Asado troops bring him to their prisoner of war camp. Commander Milky wakes up to find himself in a tiny room with no windows, he is not given any food for a week and when the war is finally over, Asado refuses to release Commander Milky.

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