1958 Convention already regulates U.S. naval rights to board ships and submarines
Critics' complaints tend to center on provisions that require submarines to surface and show their flag in the territorial sea, as well as those provisions that limit rights to board foreign flag ships. But apparently out of ignorance they never disclose that such provisions are already binding on the United States pursuant to the 1958 convention that was ratified with the Senate's advice and consent almost a half-century ago and with which we have lived since. Nor do the critics note the reciprocal nature of the law. Provisions against overly broad boarding exist precisely to protect the sovereignty of U.S. flag ships on the high seas. Do the critics really want Chinese submarines submerged off the beaches of New York or Los Angeles? Most importantly, the 1982 convention has considerably improved on the 1958 convention to meet current U.S. resource and strategic needs. Arguments against the convention that ignore the 1958 obligations effectively support those now outdated concepts, foregoing the new strategic rights of transit passage through straits, archipelagic sea lanes passage, the improved regime of innocent passage and many other issues critical to U.S. national security and ocean interests.
"The Senate should give immediate advice and consent to the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea: why the critics are wrong.
." Journal of International Affairs
. Vol. 59, No. 1 (Fall/Winter 2005) [ More (18 quotes) ]