Judgement No. 238/2014 Seven Years Later. The Italian Constitutional Court and die schöne Seele of the International Legal Order

By Stefano Battini

The impact of Judgment No. 238/2014 of the Italian Constitutional Court, seven years after its adoption, is disappointing. The Court has committed a serious breach of international law. In fact, in the name of the rule of law, it has strengthened a constitutional theory that is today exploited by authoritarian states against the rule of law itself. The judgment has not advanced the prospect of reform of international law on state immunity, nor has it produced any concrete compensation for the victims of Nazi crimes. All this is countered only by a symbolic and «spiritual» advantage. Should we conclude that Italy has become the «beautiful soul» of the international legal order?