Hassan Jabareen


This Note explores the strategies of transnational cause lawyers working

within national courts. It begins by documenting the emerging use of

international norms and arguments for the purpose of mobilizing local

communities and affecting domestic laws. The use of transnational law

today broadens the legal imagination of lawyers beyond their national

borders, constraints, and traditional audiences. Redefining the boundaries

of a legal victory, transnational law provides lawyers with tools to

continue bringing legal challenges while avoiding the dilemmas of

legitimating oppressive legal structures.

This Note presents a case study of transnational lawyering, in the context

of challenging ongoing military operations through the invocation of

international humanitarian law. In 2002, lawyers from Adalah - The

Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel -filed an unprecedented

series of petitions before the Supreme Court of Israel during an unfolding

military operation in the West Bank. They did this despite knowing that

the Supreme Court would not intervene in the military's operational

activities. The article chronicles the choices made by the Adalah lawyers

who sought to use the petitions as a vehicle to create a legal and historical

record of the events. Bypassing domestic law, the petitions were anchored

in international humanitarian law principles. They spurred official state,

military, and judicial responses to the allegations while the hostilities

were still ongoing, a crucial record amidst an enforced media blackout.

The case illustrates how transnational lawyering succeeded in mobilizing

international bodies through domestic courts.