Air Transport World

National boundaries. (international aviation law)(Editorial)

International law was developed in the 17th century to limit the reach of states' rules. In 1944, the world's aviation community got together and cleared up how all that applied to aviation. This was considered essential for the development of the industry. Nothing stifles an industry more than overlapping and conflicting laws, all claiming preeminence and ultimate wisdom.

While these limits have not been sacrosanct, U.S. agencies and legislators have been stretching the boundaries of accepted practice, adopting a series of laws and regulations that reach to every corner of the globe, attempting to regulate even the equipment and service a non-U.S. airline provides in its own nation's airspace.

An observer of international law noted that one of the problems addressed by international law in the 17th century was the Ottoman Turks' belief that the whole globe was theirs to govern. …

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