After World War II, the international legal restrictions on the use of force were finally codified in the United Nations Charter. The United States championed the Charter until Morgenthau and his successors persuaded many policymakers to pursue military superiority in the world in disregard to an international law seen as lacking powerful means of enforcement. Henkin and others responded that it is not enforcement that gives law its authority but actual compliance. Compliance theory provided an answer to the international law deniers that worked for a time until international law became the target not only of political science “realists” but also of post-modern legal critics. Post-modernism, however, also held the seeds of renewal for international legal theory with its critique of rationalism, positivism, and imperialism.
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