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The Effect of Decisions by Courts of the States of the Union on the International Relations of the United States

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posted on 2023-08-03, 16:18 authored by Pauline A. Frederick

When the United States became a member of the family of nations it assumed privileges and counter-posing obligations incident to such a status. These privileges and obligations have their sanction in the international law which governs the intercourse of the various members of such a body. This guarantee of commonly recognized rights and duties is necessary if there is to be the greatest degree of preservation of the peace and promotion of commerce. It is obvious that if a state incurs international responsibilities it must be free from domestic inhibitions which hamper the proper discharge of these duties; for if a state is held responsible for its acts, it should have the right, in the first instance, to determine the manner in which those acts shall be performed.In addition to the Constitutional delegation of power to the federal government in foreign relations and the external recognition of this status by foreign states, there is a third source from which proceeds federal supremacy. This is found in the express prohibitions placed on the States of the Union in regard to entering "into any treaty, alliance, or confederation" granting "letters of marque and reprisal"; or, without the consent of Congress, laying "any duty of tonnage", keeping "troops or ships of war, in time of peace", entering "into any agreement or compact with another State, or with a foreign power*, or engaging "in war unless actually invaded or in such imminent danger as will admit of no delay."Even though we find the supremacy of the federal government in international relations evidenced by constitutional grants to the national government, the external recognition of this status by foreign nations and the restrictions placed b> the Constitution on the States of the Union, there are certain instances in which the States of the Union through their agencies affect international relations. While it is possible for the States of the Union, through their respective agencies, to "do such acts as endanger the foreign relations of the nation....," it is equally as possible for them to do such acts as will contribute toward international cooperation.







Source: Masters Abstracts International, Volume: 83-01.; Thesis (M.A.)--American University, 1931.


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