It is a somewhat self-evident truth that the threshold for the application of the law of armed conflict is that an armed conflict must be in existence. In Chapter 4 we discussed the spectrum of conflict and noted the criteria, including the intensity and sustainment of hostilities, which must be satisfied for such a state of affairs to exist. In the present chapter, we are concerned with military operations that may be undertaken in circumstances of considerable strategic instability but which do not reach the armed conflict threshold. In a legal sense, the...
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