How an area measuring no more than about 11,000 square kilometers could become arguably “ground zero” for the formation of post-Cold War international law is a bit of a mystery, but the province (and now country) of Kosovo, in the late twentieth/early twenty-first centuries, somehow managed to pull off that feat. In Contested Statehood: Kosovo’s Struggle for Independence Marc Weller provides the best history to date of the Kosovo crisis from the end of the Cold War up to the point that Kosovo’s independence was declared in February 2008. In its July 2009 advisory opinion on that legality of that Declaration, the International Court of Justice avoided a lengthy account of Kosovo’s contemporary history, hewing closely to just those facts and law necessary to answer the narrow question before it. As such, anyone interested in the backdrop for the Court’s advisory opinion would do well to keep Contested Statehood close at hand.
GW Paper Series
GWU Legal Studies Research Paper No. 519; GWU Law School Public Law Research Paper No. 519
Sean D. Murphy, Book Review of Marc Weller, Contested Statehood: Kosovo’s Struggle for Independence, Oxford University Press, 2009 (321 pp.), 42 Geo. Wash. Int'l L. Rev. 443 (2011).