On October 26th, Professor Christopher J. Borgen and Professor Margaret E. McGuinness, the co-directors of St. John’s Center for International and Comparative Law, convened a group of their colleagues from Opinio Juris, a leading website of debate and discussion about international law, for a conversation about international law and U.S. foreign policy in this Presidential election year.
Professors Borgen and McGuinness, and their colleague Professor Julian Ku from Hoftsra Law founded Opinio Juris in 2005.
In the last eleven years, the site has expanded from a few dozen visits per day to a current total of over six million visits. The masthead has grown to ten law professors, plus there have been hundreds of guest bloggers. Together, they have written over 9,000 posts on international legal issues. Opinio Juris has also become a resource for information about international law on Twitter, with over 11,000 followers, and also on Facebook, with over 6,000 followers. For their discussion, which took place in the Law School’s Moot Court Room to an audience of over 70 students, faculty, and alums, Professors Borgen and McGuinness were joined by Professor Ku as well as Professor Kristen Boon (Seton Hall Law School) and Professor Deborah Pearlstein (Cardozo School of Law).
Topics included the ongoing conflict in Syria, tensions in the South China Sea, the situation in Ukraine, the status of the United Nations, and the Obama Administration’s record on human rights issues. The roundtable was co-sponsored by the American Branch of the International Law Association and the New York State Bar Association, International Section Committee on Public International Law. It was introduced by St. John’s Law alum and Adjunct Professor, Mark A. Meyer, a member of the law firm Herzfeld & Rubin and Co-Chair of the Public International Law Committee of the NYSBA.