Sovereign Right to War – Historical Discourse

The article considers the problem of historical development of the right to war and its correlation with the category of «sovereignty». For the first time the right to war has found signs of legal process in the Roman state. We are obliged to Roman law for the term the right to war (jus belli) and for its counterpart right to peace (jus pacis). Even today, the war is meant to be a form to protect the rights against sovereign entities, over which legal power does not dominate. But practice shows that the war, declaring the protection of rights, first of all, destroys the old relationship and only then, at the end of the war, depending on the current balance of political forces, creates a new legal order. The desire of mankind to keep the peace did not interfere with the perception of the war as a natural phenomenon, all philosophers, which offered recipes of «eternal peace», insisted on that. Hypothetically, recognizing the possible existence without war, the scientists have formulated criteria, which were difficult to achieve. As panacea it seemed to be the creation of a union of states or peoples states on the condition of keeping individual subject and refusing from sovereignty, and the basis for this must have been an international law. The concept of state sovereignty is based on the independence of the state in the external and the internal affairs of the rule, and the concept of sovereignty is central to the definition of the state. It describes the legal nature of the sovereignty of the state and is the
criterion by which it is possible to distinguish the state from other public-law unions. Recent history shows an attempt to create a union state of mankind or peoples state that would stand above the sovereign states. Namely the experience of European integration can be seen as an experiment over sovereignty. Moreover, the current conditions of globalization have created a reason to doubt the necessity of the existence of such categories as state sovereignty. Nevertheless, the principle of the sovereign equality of States is one of ten fundamental pillars of international relations, and namely international institutions, in particular the UNO, can be regarded as guilty of the fact, that sovereignty acts as a cover for all sorts of abuses by the state, including wars. At the present stage of civilization development, right to war is due to both state sovereignty and right to peace. And although this right can be considered a natural and traditional, in comparison with the right to peace, the general trend of the historical mankind development shows the intention to restrict it with all possible legal means.