To read this article, click here.


"Lawfare is a real danger because its “very essence is to use legal norms to eviscerate (a powerful military’s) tactical capacity,” said Michael Newton, professor of international law at Vanderbilt University School of Law. He’s also a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy and a former professor there. This misuse of the law blurs the lines of legal principles, such as when the necessities of war allow the destruction of civilian property, Newton said. After the fact, any act of war can be deemed criminal by somebody in some circumstances. “What do you tell the young rifleman looking at the barrel of a gun?” he asked. “That’s lawfare, to the extent you paralyze war fighters.” Furthermore, Newton said lawfare is a very absolutist approach, either right or wrong with no middle ground. For instance, Israelis warned civilian populations in Gaza of imminent attack by sending two million fliers, making telephone calls, and using loudspeakers, Newton noted. “Nobody’s ever done it that way; nobody’s ever taken the care. And yet nothing is good enough if you build in lawfare.”"