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Unpublished Paper
United States Non-Ratification of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea Treaty, Arguments Pro and Con: Is the United States Moving Toward an Isolationist Foreign Policy?
ExpressO (2010)
  • Tracy L. Woodard
Abstract
The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea Treaty officially went into effect in 1994. Since 1994, the treaty has silently sat in the halls of the Senate poised for Senate ratification. Despite the United States having been the architect of its inception, bipartisan Presidential support and approval from two Senate Foreign Relations Committees, the treaty has yet to come before the Senate for debate for its ratification. With many possible contributing political factors, the author presupposes that one crucial element at work may be America’s isolationist tendencies of its past which is echoed in the rhetoric of those who stand in ardent opposition to its ratification. What makes this treaty different from other treaties such as the Geneva Convention that also has not been ratified, is the political, economic and security interests of the United States that may be at stake if timely action is not taken towards its ratification. With over 159 countries, including most of the industrialized nations that have ratified the treaty, the United States is the only major, maritime power that has not become a party to it. That has precluded the United States from filing claims that will extend its continental shelf and exert sovereignty over valuable resources including the loss of rights over valuable resources in the Arctic and deep seabed minerals. This paper explores in depth both the arguments that have stymied the ratification of this treaty and those which outline its benefits and call for its urgent undertaking.
Keywords
  • international treaty,
  • law of the sea
Disciplines
Publication Date
June 23, 2010
Citation Information
Tracy L. Woodard. "United States Non-Ratification of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea Treaty, Arguments Pro and Con: Is the United States Moving Toward an Isolationist Foreign Policy?" ExpressO (2010)
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/tracy_woodard/1/