Yale Law Profs: On Syria, a U.N. Vote Isn’t Optional

In a New York Times guest-op, Oona A. Hathaway and Scott J. Shapiro, Yale Law School professors make clear that a unilateral US attack on Syria would be in violation of international law and treaties:

If the United States begins an attack without Security Council authorization, it will flout the most fundamental international rule of all — the prohibition on the use of military force, for anything but self-defense, in the absence of Security Council approval. This rule may be even more important to the world’s security — and America’s — than the ban on the use of chemical weapons.

President Obama, is meeting with world leaders at the G-20 confab in St. Petersburg. If he has such an iron-clad case against Assad, he can use his charm, organizing and legal skills to bring the rest of the world along toward a Kosovo kind of solution to this similar mess. It’s a shame that the UN is powerless.