Why Settle for a "Willy-Nilly Unequal, Haphazard Rule of Law Effort"?; An Argument for a Standardized Framework for the Development of the Rule of Law

Hooke, Kelli A., The Judge Advocate General's School, United States Army

Rule of law (ROL) operations are complex and require a team effort by United States Government (USG) agencies and employees. They cover a broad scope of disciplines and activities and require the coordination between multiple USG agencies. And if conducting ROL missions is a team effort, there should be a playbook that every member uses. Unfortunately, that is not the case. Many current ROL operations are conducted ad hoc, with little coordination, and too focused on criminal justice systems; this approach is simply inadequate. A standardized framework referred to as the Standing Framework for Rule of Law Operations (SFROLO) used by all USG ROL practitioners would facilitate coherent and effective unity of effort during ROL operations.

This thesis goes a step beyond arguing that the rule of law (ROL) operations are not being done correctly. It proposes a solution to some of the coordination problems and ad hoc nature of ROL operations conducted by the United States Government (USG). The solution is the creation of a standardized framework for all USG ROL practitioners to use in the field. This framework would act as a starting point for operations and would assist communication and coordination by providing a playbook that all can work from.

Examples from post-conflict states, such as Sierra Leone, Sudan, and Afghanistan, illustrate that many post-conflict states possess the same challenges in developing the ROL and the SFROLO proposes an approach that would be effective in a variety of post-conflict countries. Practitioners need a standardized interdisciplinary method to execute operations that establish effective penal systems, support economic development, and create good governance. The proposed framework meets these needs by providing a common analytical framework, reporting requirement and task matrix which integrate this interdisciplinary approach into a standard model for operations. The SFROLO draws knowledge from many USG agencies and would be used by all USG ROL practitioners for the development of laws and legitimate legal systems in a postconflict state. The proposed framework will enhance interagency cooperation and provide a more effective interdisciplinary approach to ROL operations. The SFROLO proposed in this thesis encourages the following: greater cooperation amongst practitioners; standardization of USG ROL doctrine; and a greater level of success in the execution of ROL missions.

Note: Abstract extracted from PDF file via OCR.

LLM (Master of Laws)
Intervention (International Law), Rule of Law

TJAGSA Thesis 2011 Hooke;


- Introduction;
- "Willy-Nilly Unequal, Haphazard Rule of Law Effort";
- Rule of Law Operations Need;
- The SFROLO Can Establish a Standard Model and Effective Approach;
- How the SFROLO Works;
- Applying Past Lessons for Future Success;
- Conclusion;
- Appendix A (Standing Framework for Rule of Law Operations).

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