(c) 2003 Stephen E. Sachs <contact me>

Self-Determination and Disorder

by Stephen E. Sachs

International Relations
Merton College, Oxford
Week 3, Michaelmas Term 2003


Can claims for national self-determination be reconciled with the requirements of international order?


The experience of the 20th century, in which scores of millions died in conflicts between nationally-defined states, has called into doubt the wisdom of the present state-dominated international system.  Outbreaks of ethnic conflict during the period of decolonization and after the end of the Cold War have raised further questions regarding the viability of peace among nationally-defined states.  To theorist Michael Walzer, however, the path to a lasting peace is not the transcendence of the state system, but rather its "expansion," "full development," and "universalization." so that every national group may enjoy the benefits of a state looking after their interests.  Walzer holds that claims for national self-determination are not only compatible with international order, but rather that a stable international order requires the success of such claims and the realization of the principle "for every nation its own state."[1]

Yet this principle, and the possible conditions of its realization, are far more complex than Walzer allows.  Nations are artifacts, not natural beings, and claims for national self-determination face inherent and insurmountable difficulties in specifying the nature of the entities involved.  Claims to self-determination are frequently in conflict with one another, and no clear standards have been established to distinguish those claims that will be accepted from those that will not.  The pursuit of self-determination has been and will likely continue to be a constant source of tension and disorder, and Walzer's vision, even if fully realized, would tend to create a world that is more dangerous rather than less.  The confusion over self-determination has been unfortunately enhanced by international norms, which have codified vagueness into law and thereby encouraged attempts to change the status quo through violence.  Rather than attempt to realize conflicting desires for national identity, actors seeking to protect the rights of both minority and majority populations ought to revise these international norms, encouraging respect for the rights of minorities to practice their own cultures within multi-ethnic states and legitimizing separatist efforts only in cases where such rights are restricted.  Only by the protection of rights, rather than the creation of new states, can a lasting international settlement be achieved.

Walzer's essential claim is that much of the violence that disturbs international order is "not so much a consequence of sovereignty as an accompaniment of the efforts to achieve sovereignty"; we cannot move beyond the state system "until it has been completed," and the gains of some in acquiring states "become gains for everyone."[2]  In support of his argument, Walzer advances three claims as to why national self-determination is necessary.  The first is the "prudential claim":  that "we and our fellows, members of a people or historical nation, can only guarantee our physical / survival, our long-term existence as individuals or as a coherent group, through the medium of sovereign power."[3]  National groups "can be sure of no one's protection but [their] own"; the Armenians and Jews, who were both targets of genocide in the first half of the 20th century, would have been far better off with their own states (along with "bureaucrats, policemen, and soldiers").[4]  Thus, no group can remain content without the protection of a state.  Second, there is an "expressive claim," that "we and our fellows have the same right that every other historical nation has to organize our life together so as to give expression to our values, cultural understandings, sense of ourselves."  Given the mass political awakenings enabled by industrialization and the advent of new technologies for communication, "statehood seems an inevitable claim," as the only likely alternative is cultural "repression in someone else's state."[5]  Finally, there is the "internationalist claim," that those who seek self-determination "are disturbers of world peace only insofar as we are denied the protective and expressive powers of sovereignty."  In other words, Walzer argues, depriving individuals of cause to reject their governments as alien would (as John Locke wrote of religious toleration) "take away all ground of complaints and tumults on account of conscience."  National oppression is one of the "chief causes" of the wars of national liberation and unification that have plagued the modern world; yet peace will come (and will only come) "when conscience is quiet and nationalism satisfied."[6]

Yet Walzer's view suffers from two fundamental difficulties:  one theoretical, one practical.  First, it exemplifies what Ernest Gellner criticizes as a Hegelian "sleeping-beauty" theory of nationhood--by which nations may slumber for centuries before they achieve self-consciousness and begin the struggle for independent existence.[7]  The deepest flaw in Walzer's analysis, in Øyvind Østerud's assessment, is that he adopts "the idea of nation-states as a finite number of, so to speak, ontologically defined units waiting to be born."[8]  The early nationalists asserted that nations were "obvious and natural divisions of the human race," applying evidence from history, anthropology, and linguistics; yet, writes Elie Kedourie, "the world is indeed too diverse, much too diverse, for the classifications of nationalist anthropology."  Races, languages, religions, and political loyalties are "inextricably intermixed," both within territories and within individual people, such that there is no one process by which appropriate national borders could be drawn.[9]  The identification of certain features as significant for the determination of national identity will therefore inevitably rely on social choices, on constructs and symbols.  To Eric Hobsbawm, the very concepts of individual nations "must include a constructed or 'invented' component"; nations are, to use Benedict Anderson's phrase, "imagined communities."[10]  Why should the fate of the international order depend on the protection of entities that are mere "artefacts, not real things"?[11]

Moreover, as one might expect of such social constructs, recent history proves that national identity can change significantly over time.  At the time of the post-World-War-I creation of Yugoslavia, Serbian identity was viewed as compatible (indeed, as best realized through) a more general Slavic identity, and it was held to be largely compatible with a unified Yugoslav identity during much of the period of socialist rule.  Yet after the fall of communism, Serb and Croat politicians managed to convince their people that their identities were fundamentally incompatible, and that they each needed a "Greater Serbia" or "Greater Croatia" to protect the security and expressive interests of their countrymen abroad.  So long as individuals continue to adopt different national identities over time (and so long as each new identity creates a new opportunity for conflict), there is no reason to think that we will ever arrive at the full realization of the system of nation-states, or that attempts to realize this system will bring peace.[12]

Walzer might respond that arriving at this full realization is not the point; the goal is not "any sort of historical endpoint," but rather to move forward the process of assigning every nation its own state.[13]  The conflict of nationalisms may persist forever, "but no particular conflict is necessarily endless, and each particular solution reforms even as it expands the state system and improves the chances for a general peace."[14]  Yet this response makes light of a further difficulty, namely that certain nationalist conflicts are potentially endless, as Walzer himself admits.  The territorial space that Walzer considers necessary to national identity "must be appropriated in one way or another, and the appropriation will often be contested--not only by imperial powers but also by other nations similarly claiming security and expression."  Thus claims to self-determination can be opposed by other claims, perhaps of equal validity; "complaint and tumult don't end," and "one nation's freedom is, often, another nation's oppression."[15]

Walzer accepts the possibility of cases where individuals from different nations are "so radically entangled" that it is impossible to draw a "good border" among them.[16]  However, he does not see this possibility as particularly threatening, commenting mildly that "the dangers of the struggle may well serve to intensify the hope" and that "Still, the completion of the state system is a reform worth pursuing."[17]  In fact, such conflicts of self-determination pose far more difficult challenges for Walzer's view.  The problem is not that the endpoint is unreachable, but that the definition of a "nation" and the demarcation of "its" territory so problematic as to make it impossible to determine what constitutes progress--to know whether the success of a given claim to self-determination represents movement forward or back.  Both sides in the Biafran War claimed to be justified by self-determination; the Biafrans sought independence, while Nigeria sought to assert its "legitimate nationality."[18]  The many attempts to redraw the borders of Eastern Europe have always left some members of a national group on the other side: ethnic Germans in Czechoslovakia, ethnic Hungarians in Romania, ethnic Serbs in Croatia, ethnic Russians in the Baltic States.  When territory is claimed as part of the historical patrimony of many nations, when each new division creates new national minorities, how can the principle of "for every nation its own state" be uncontroversially applied?  As Gellner argues, the view of nations as a "natural, God-given way of classifying men" is a myth; nationalism may occasionally turn pre-existing cultures into states, but it just as often invents cultures or even "obliterates" them when they are incompatible with the national project.[19]

Walzer's view of national liberation is obsolete.  His model is still the colonial regimes of 19th-century Europe, not the complicated state system that has arisen out of decolonization in the 20th.  The issue is no longer that of a multi-national empire seeking to suppress Hungarian national identity, as in 1848, but of different groups each exercising their own claims to nationhood.  As Østerud comments, "Liberation movements do not oppose an anti-national establishment view of society, they oppose an alternative view of the identification and delineation of the proper collective unit."[20]  An endless process of national liberation "does not point just towards a completed state system, but equally well towards an unlimited secession from established states, with no uncontroversial criteria for nationhood"--a process that routinely produces "conflicting national claims, trapped minorities within new unites, increased vulnerability and a reduced resource base for remaining groups."  This may not show that national liberation is bad per se, but it does recommend against using national liberation "as a universal clue to a more peaceful world order."[21]

Even assuming this theoretical flaw can be overcome, Walzer's view also suffers from a profound practical flaw:  namely, that it is not at all clear that a completed state system will be more effective in keeping the peace.  Walzer argues that such a system would be better able to preserve a balance of power; the capacity of the great powers would be reduced, as it would be difficult to amass substantial power without the creation of a multi-national empire.[22]  In addition, the more independent and independently-allied states there are, the more the decisions made by the great powers "will be publicized scrutinized, condemned, and resisted . . . .  [T]he conflicts likely to arise ought to be more diffused and less dangerous than those we currently live with."[23]  As an illustration, Walzer presents the U.S.-Canadian negotiations over acid rain, in which he feels "better represented . . . by the Canadian government, which aims narrowly at protecting its [own] environment . . . [a]nd I would be even better represented by a stronger, more determined, and more independent Canadian government."[24]

This case faces three difficulties, however.  First, the example of acid rain negotiations would recommend a different state system were the merits of the case were reversed.[25]  Is there any reason to suppose that the weak states are more likely to endorse moral action than strong states, or will both pursue their interests?

Second, it is not clear that the power of strong states will be reduced in Walzer's system.  According to James Mayall, there may be as many as "8,000 identifiably separate cultures" in the world; yet there are barely 200 states.[26]  If the international system is revised to include these thousands of ethnically-defined states, would not the difficulty of coordination among them give even more power to the large, ethnically homogenous states which have retained their territory?  One need not be a hard-edged structural realist to question whether a world of 8,000 states would be any more sustainable or conducive to peace than the current international system.[27]

Third, the greater number of states might also heighten, rather than reduce, the risk of international collective-action problems.  Weak individual states may have interests in avoiding short-term difficulties for themselves by cutting deals (allowing nuclear proliferation, tolerating human rights violations by their neighbors, or accepting Germany's occupation of the Sudetenland) that make things worse for everyone in the long term.  It might be better to have fewer and more powerful states so as to enable more effective cooperation among them.

The dilemma then arises:  is Walzer calling for a world of 8,000 states, or is he willing to accept that some cultures can share states?  And if the latter, how is it that those states will remain peaceful?  The claim that only a state of one's own can provide the desired security and self-expression rings hollow if many cultures (perhaps hundreds) can peacefully coexist within state borders.  The world is full of areas where peace reigns despite the lack of national identity:  Belgium and Switzerland are politically defined, rather than ethnically defined, states, but that does not prevent them from being domestically tranquil and externally non-aggressive.[28]  (Indeed, Belgium exists not for reasons of national self-expresion, but only "because it was convenient for other nations to create [it]."[29])  As Kedourie writes, the Ottoman and Roman empires were hardly 'nations,' but they "were able, as few contemporary states have yet shown themselves able, to continue for centuries, to maintain the cohesion of the social fabric and to attract the loyalties of men."[30] Similarly, those areas most clearly defined by nation-states are not always the most peaceful.  Alfred Cobban describes nationalism as one of the most potent agencies of destruction that modern society has known; empires were undermined from within and assaulted from without, but "there was less success in the task of rebuilding a stable system of states on the ruins of older political structures."[31]  If peace and nationhood do not always go together, should we not investigate the conditions of the former, rather than focus our attention on extending the latter?

Unfortunately, the theoretical and practical confusions that underlie Walzer's view have, by and large, now been codified into international law.  At the time of its founding, the United Nations' Charter did not prohibit--and was understood at the time not to prohibit--the colonial rule of other peoples.  In discussing non-self-governing territories (i.e., colonies), Chapter XI of the Charter places on the governing states the duties to "develop self government [in the colonized territories], to take due account of the political aspirations of the peoples, and to assist them in the progressive development of their free political institutions, according to the particular circumstances of each territory and its peoples and the varying stages of advancement."  The independence of the subject peoples from colonial rule is clearly treated by the Charter as a "political aspiration" among others, and not as a fundamental right.[32]

Over time, however, and as the process of decolonization proceeded, a more robust view of the right to self-determination emerged.  The 1966 Covenant on Civil and Political Rights stated boldly that "All peoples have the right to self-determination.  By virtue of that right they freely determine their political status and freely pursue their economic, social, and cultural development."[33]  Moreover, the right of self-determination was extended to peoples not only living under colonial rule, but also under the domination of foreign or alien powers; the U.N. Declaration on Friendly Relations of 1970 applies the right to the "subjection of peoples to alien subjugation, domination and exploitation," as in the case of apartheid South Africa.[34]

On Rosalyn Higgins' interpretation, the right to self-determination as guaranteed in international law is more general than the quest for independence; it addresses the right of individuals to practice their culture and the right of all the 'peoples' within a territory to jointly self-determine their fate.  Thus, international law does not require redrawing borders in response to secessionist or irredentist movements, which is what one might think is exactly what a "right to self-determination" demands.  Minorities may have cultural rights that must be protected, but, Higgins argues, "minorities as such do not have a right of self-determination.  That means, in effect, that they have no right to secession, to independence, or to join with comparable groups in other states."[35]

Yet what Michla Pomerance terms the "New UN Law of Self-Determination" relies on a variety of instruments, as well as the attitudes towards self-determination displayed by the General Assembly, and advances substantially different conclusions than Higgins would imply.  The United Nations' customary practices with regard to self-determination naively assume that fundamental features of the principle--the definition of a 'people,' the method of determination of its status, the possible options to be determined (whether independence only or the integration or free association with another state), the requirements (if any) for 'internal' as well as 'external' self-determination and freedom from authoritarian rule, etc.--can be resolved in an uncontroversial way without conflicting with equally fundamental principles of international law, such as the inviolability of borders or prohibitions on the aggressive use of force.  In fact, these questions cannot be resolved so clearly, and the U.N.'s ability to pick and choose appropriate questions for their resolution has tended to reward military success, hand decolonized peoples over to new colonial masters (often newly decolonized themselves), and rest crucial issues of international law on whose ox is gored.[36]  When the U.N. accepts Nehru's invasion of Goa against the express wishes of its residents, can there be any explanation that does not mention the fact that on one side of the conflict is India, and on the other Portugal?

The vagueness inherent in the U.N.'s approach to self-determination--sometimes endorsing separatist movements, sometimes condemning them--has the result of encouraging, rather than preventing, the use of violence.  For instance, if there is no right to self-determination in the form of secession, can a secessionist movement legitimately use force in pursuit of that end?  Faced with that question, Higgins (and, perhaps, current international law) adopts a curiously agnostic approach.  Even if "self-determination is not an authorization of secession by minorities," she writes, "there is nothing in international law that prohibits secession or the formation of new states."[37]  In other words, international law takes no position on the struggle for indepence; if a national movement attempts secession and succeeds, it will be internationally recognized.  Indeed, this principle seems to apply well to the case of Bangladesh, which shortly after winning its independence through force was admitted to the U.N. and even recognized by its former government of Pakistan.

Yet this legal agnosticism regarding self-determination encounters a fatal difficulty.  As Walzer himself recognizes in his work Just and Unjust Wars, it cannot be that both participants in an armed conflict are in the right.  Wars are evils, if necessary ones, and cannot be justly fought on both sides.  Yet if the internationally recognized prohibition on the aggressive use of force does not prohibit attempts at secession or the formation of new states, and if the principle of self-determination at the same time does not authorize the secession (thereby licensing the state's attempt to oppose the separatists by as a police action within its own borders), then both the separatists and the state which seeks to crush them are acting within the bounds of international law.  This is a legal contradiction of the highest importance, especially since the confusion of norms is likely to encourage attempts at secession through violence.  If a new government is guaranteed recognition should it succeed on the field--if "might makes right" is elevated to a principle of international law--then those who support independence will have nothing to lose but their chains.  Such an approach ignores the death and devastation that may result from decades of failed attempts at independence--and which may make the secessionists' victory not worth achieving in the first place.

The above argument is encapsulated in Mayall's judgment that secession "constitute[s] a standing challenge to an international order based on the sovereign state."  On the one hand, "the right to self-determination is held to be a fundamental human right," while on the other, "aggressive war, and therefore the possibility of acquiring title by conquest, is proscribed under the [U.N.] Charter."  The only way to resolve this contradiction is to accept an interpretation of self-determination "as reflected in the existing state order"--that is, to claim (contra Walzer) that the state system is already fulfilled.  Such a claim, Mayall concludes, "is so obviously a fiction that it must in turn constitute a provocative invitation to secessionist nationalists."[38]

The principle of self-determination, then, is not one conducive to international order.  Taken on its own, it is unable to resolve the conflicts among self-determining groups, which are today far more common than conflicts between a group seeking self-determination and an unabashedly multi-national empire.  Taken as a part of international law, it is dangerously under-specified and encourages an early resort to violence.  What alternatives, therefore, might be available to reconcile the demands for self-determination with the conditions of peace?  As Donald Horowitz ably points out, the use of violence in pursuit of self-determination is hardly inevitable.  If one conceptualizes nations as 'sleeping beauties,' one would hardly expect that anything short of independence will result in Walzer's 'quiet conscience.'  But often the establishment of a new state is unnecessary. Horowitz describes secessionist movements as marked by an "often tactical nature of demands, [an] elasticity, even fickleness, the willingness of independence movements to settle for much less than statehood, and the occasional interest of secessionists in capturing the whole state if that proves possible."[39]  Often, the "conditions that promote a disposition to succeed . . . are subject to intervention and deflection," and the "precipitating events" that lead a group to seek secession rather than accommodation within the system "are not inexorable."[40]  Thus, a state that protects the rights of its minorities and pays attention to their claims is likely to avoid the implacable hostility that marks many conflicts over self-determination.

Moreover, such rights are already codified in international law.  Article 27 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights requires that members of minority groups "shall not be denied the right, in community with other members of their group, to enjoy their own culture, to profess and practice their own religion, and to use their own language."[41]  Enforcement of these rights could provide the security--and, to a lesser extent, the opportunity for national self-expression--that Walzer describes as necessary to the fulfillment of national aspirations.[42]  Those societies that respect minority rights will very likely be more peaceful than those that do not.  As Mayall writes, the framework of a liberal state diminishes the possibility of state repression, as "a shared political culture, in which a belief in individual civil and political rights is deeply entrenched, will act ultimately as a constraint on the use of state power to suppress those rights."  Moreover, a stable and economically successful liberal regime will equally weaken the desire for national independence, as "the integration of the modern world economy . . . has undoubtedly raised the costs of dismembering the state."[43]

To Walzer, the protection of minority rights will always come in second place to the establishment of new states.  Unlike religious groups, minority groups cannot merely be tolerated, because they require territory in order to achieve self-expression and security:  "National independence requires physical space while ecclesiastical self-government does not."[44]  Yet the world is full of examples where toleration, rather than separation, would be the appropriate means of protecting national groups.  Consider, for instance, the Roma--they have no land that could be allocated to them, except by doing great violence to the claims of other nations.  How can we go about realizing Walzer's project of giving "for every nation its own state" when we can't even find a specific place to put them? Surely the best way to address the needs of the Roma for security and cultural expression is to impose norms on states that require a respect for individual rights, and especially the security and cultural rights of their minority citizens.  The same could be said for the ethnic Chinese in Malaysia, or those residents of South Africa whose ancestors were brought by the British from the Indian subcontinent; an attempt to promote minority rights as part of "internal self-determination" is far more likely to produce success than the current series of mixed signals on territorial separation.

Although Walzer references the democratic peace theory of Michael Doyle, he argues that the reason for peace is not only liberalism, but that "within this world of liberal states, the ground of complaints and tumults on account of nationality has been largely eliminated.  The pacific union is a union of satisfied nations."[45]  Yet this union also includes states, such as Britain, which contain significant national minorities within them that might well seek external recognition (the Scottish, the Welsh, etc.).  But the fact that these demands can be accommodated within a liberal democratic system, rather than simply shut out by authoritarian power, helps keep them peaceful, and helps preserve order in the absence of separatist demands.

Were Walzer's sleeping-beauty theory correct, were nations easily separable entities that merely await their liberation, his recommendation of "for every nation its own state" might be justified.  Yet in the world that exists, demands for self-determination conflict and there may be no international settlement by which a given conflict can be resolved.  As Pomerance writes, "self-determination claims continue, as in Wilson's time, to present themselves in opposition to other self-determination claims and not to non-self-determination, or anti-self-determination, claims."[46]  International law fails to resolve these questions, and its current vagueness and obfuscation only encourages conflict.  Completion of the state system is, in fact, just as utopian a project as realizing the "millennial kingdom or the end of time"; it is "an empty vision" which "provides no practical guidance."[47]  We have no effective and predictable method of determining the validity of claims to national identity; and in a system without predictability, there will always be those willing to use violence to play the odds.  The best hope for an international order is to moderate the demands, rather than satisfy them--a course which requires a divergence from the principle of self-determination in favor of the principles of protection of minority rights and peace.


[1] Michael Walzer, "The Reform of the State System," in Øyvind Østerud, ed., Studies of War and Peace (1987), p. 229 (emphasis in original).

[2] Walzer, p. 228.

[3] Walzer, pp. 228-29.

[4] Walzer, p. 229.

[5] Walzer, p. 229.

[6] Walzer, p. 230.

[7] Ernest Gellner, "Nationalism and High Cultures," in John Hutchinson and Anthony D. Smith, eds., Nationalism (1994), p. 63.

[8] Østerud, "Discussion," Studies of War and Peace, p. 248.

[9] Elie Kedourie, "Nationalism and Self-Determination," in Hutchinson and Smith, p. 53.

[10] Eric Hobsbawm, "The Nation as Invented Tradition," in Hutchinson and Smith, p. 76; Benedict Anderson, "Imagined Communities," in Hutchinson and Smith, p. 89.

[11] Østerud, "Discussion," p. 248.

[12] Moreover, the attempt to define nationhood in natural features of populations may in fact be irrelevant to the pursuit of an orderly international system.  If there is a natural standard for nationhood, then it must be possible for a group to claim nationhood wrongly, to be in error in its self-judgment of national identity.  Yet how would one go about challenging a group's authenticity?  Such claims would share the air of unreality surrounding arguments that a Palestinian "people" did not exist prior to the formation of Israel.  Even if the historical and cultural analysis in these arguments is correct, even if a specifically Palestinian national identity was not present among Arabs living in the region before 1948, cultural analysis cannot change the fact that there are millions of people alive today who self-identify as Palestinians, who have adopted this national identity as their own, and who would not regard resettlement in modern-day Jordan or Egypt as simply movement within different regions of their own national territory.  For the purposes of achieving international peace, what matters is what individuals believe and will fight for, not what they ought to believe according to an optimal historical and cultural analysis.

[13] Walzer, p. 232.

[14] Walzer, p. 239.

[15] Walzer, p. 230.

[16] Walzer, p. 231.

[17] Walzer, pp. 230-31.

[18] David Watt, "Discussion," in Østerud, p. 241.

[19] Gellner, p. 64.

[20] Østerud, "Discussion," p. 245-46.  To Østerud, the problem is not that the Wilsonian ideal of self-determination was betrayed by the corruption of Versailles after World War I, but that "the ideal itself was intrinsically ambiguous and utterly unrealistic:  a recipe for instability, chaos, rebellion, utopian hopes, insoluble rivalries, [and] dismemberment of any organized state" (p. 247).

[21] Østerud, p. 247.  See also Elie Kedourie, "A New International Disorder," in Adam Watson and Hedley Bull, eds., The Expansion of International Society (1985), p. 349 ("The idea of national self-determination assumes quite simply that the world is composed of separate, identifiable 'nations,' and claims that these nations are, as such, each entitled to form a sovereign state.  Since, manifestly, the world is not what this theory assumes it to be, to make reality conform to the theory must involve endless upheaval and disorder. . . . National self-determination is thus a principle of disorder, not of order.  This was clearly seen when German self-determination involved the destruction in turn of Austria, Czechoslovakia, and Poland--states which, ironically enough, had shortly before themselves been set up in the name of national self-determination").

[22] Walzer, p. 235.

[23] Walzer, p. 237.

[24] Walzer, pp. 237-38.

[25] See Watt, p. 244.

[26] James Mayall, "Irredentist and Secessionist Challenges," in Hutchinson and Smith, p. 276.

[27] E.g., who would pay the salaries of all the ambassadors?

[28] Alfred Cobban, "The Rise of the Nation-State System," in Hutchinson and Smith, p. 248.

[29] Østerud, p. 248.

[30] Kedourie, "Nationalism and Self-Determination," p. 52.

[31] Cobban, p. 249.

[32] Rosalyn Higgins, "Problems and Process:  International Law and How We Use It" (1994), p. 112.  Similarly, Article 76 of the Charter (discussing the trusteeship process) declares the purpose of the process as "to promote ... their progressive development towards self government or independence as may be appropriate to the particular circumstances of each territory and its peoples and the freely expressed wishes of the peoples concerned" (Higgins, p. 112) (emphasis in Higgins).

[33] Higgins, p. 114.

[34] Higgins, p. 115.

[35] Higgins, p. 124.

[36] See generally Michla Pomerance, Self-determination in Law and Practice (1982).

[37] Higgins, p. 125.

[38] Mayall, pp. 275-76.

[39] David Horowitz, "The Logic of Secessions," in Hutchinson and Smith, p. 263.

[40] Horowitz, p. 268.

[41] Higgins, p. 125.

[42] Some trappings of nationhood may be preserved even without a state; the Scottish and Welsh, for example, have their own national football teams.

[43] Mayall, p. 280.

[44] Walzer, p. 230.

[45] Walzer, p. 231.

[46] Pomerance, p. 73.

[47] Walzer, p. 239.