About Errol Mendes

Professor, Faculty of Law, Common Law Section

Errol Mendes

Ukraine: Another Example of the Dangerous Clash of Hegemons

 A previous version of this essay was published in the Huffington Post on March 18, 2014 When the history of the early decades of the 21st century is written, it may well be called the era of multiple clashing hegemons. The most recent global crisis, triggered by President Putin’s decision to invade the Ukrainian region of Crimea on the pretext of protecting R… Read More

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With Syria, the US and Britain Are Trapped in the Past

Published in the Huffington Post Canada, September 16, 2013 William Faulkner’s most brilliant insight was his quip that “The past is never dead, it is not even past.” It is the past that is now befuddling the most strategic thinkers in President Obama’s administration as well as the bevy of deep thinkers at Harvard and other unive… Read More

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Corruption in Africa, Corruption in Canada: Different Scale, Same Problem

Published in the Globe and Mail, July 1, 2013 The trip to East Africa with an attempt to climb Mount Kilimanjaro was a check off my bucket list. But the professional lessons I learned from that trip were also an important addition to my list of insights. Everyone we encountered was fatalistic about the depth of corruption that is suffocating the ability of thei… Read More

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Intervening in Syria Would be Illegal. It Would Also be Right.

Published in the Globe and Mail, May 1, 2013 If the United States becomes convinced that Bashar al-Assad’s regime has started using chemical weapons against its own citizens, the “red line” set down by President Barack Obama will have been crossed. If the U.S. initiates military action as a consequence, it will provoke the same questions of legality that ar… Read More

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Canada’s Diplomatic Tantrum in the Desert

Published in iPolitics, April 9, 2013 A little more than two weeks ago, Canada became the only nation on the planet to walk away from the UN Convention to Combat Desertification. The decision to withdraw — making Canada the only nation outside the main global effort to combat devastating droughts in Africa and elsewhere — was taken quietly by cabinet on the re… Read More

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Canada’s Reputation is Tainted by Bribery and Abuse. Only Boards Can Rescue It.

Published in the Globe and Mail, March 5, 2013 The reputations of Canadian companies operating abroad are under serious attack. The attention of governments and the global private sector is being drawn to recent headlines such as “SNC bribery probe widens to Algeria,” “Bangladesh government accuses SNC exec of bribery,” “Griffiths Energy guilty of Chad… Read More

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Defending Canada’s Human Rights and Rule of Law Legacy

2013 will see the UN and many countries around the world celebrating the 65th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. It should also be the year that we celebrate a Canadian law professor, John Humphrey, who as head of the UN Human Rights Division collaborated with Eleanor Roosevelt to produce the blueprint that would result in what was ter… Read More

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Free Speech: A New Trigger for Global Crisis

A different version of this essay was published in the Huffington Post, September 19, 2012. The hate-mongering film produced by an extremist anti-Muslim individual in the U.S. (who is also a convicted criminal) has triggered anti-U.S. violence around the world by hate-filled Muslim extremists. Among the tragic victims so far are four dead U.S. diplomat… Read More

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In Defense of Invisible Children

The critics of the Invisible Children video have argued that the viral video, which astoundingly has had more than 36 million hits on YouTube, is overstating the importance of this now much-diminished group of thugs called the Lord’s Resistance Army, led by Joseph Kony. The aim of the video is to make Kony world famous in order to lead to his capture. The criti… Read More

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A New Cold War on Democracy and Human Rights at the UN Security Council and Beyond?

On February 4th, 2012, the UN Security Council witnessed what could be one of the first salvos in a new cold war focused on democracy and human rights. A double veto by Russia and China defeated the resolution drafted by the Arab League (and supported by almost all the Arab states along with all the other members of the UN Security Council) that was aimed at stopp… Read More

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