Another weakness of international law is related to its inability to impose it. It is its subjective intrinsic nature of culture. This legacy stems from the Treaty of Westphalia of 1648, a treaty that introduced the notion of sovereign states, empowered by law to govern their own territory and people without any outside influence. Of course, it has worked well in a world that is not so interdependent. That is no longer the case. Culture is so closely linked to politics and politics that it is difficult to reach a general consensus on a particular subject and, even more, to address it. More often, culture does not become the scapegoat for non-compliance with international legal norms, a buffer between international policies, since they refer to domestic policy, and gaps in reinterpreting laws. In addition, culture becomes an excuse for governments that do not meet certain standards. These governments will pass laws and work to promote and enforce the law, but ultimately they will be responsible for stagnating outcomes for people who are in their traditional opinions or culture. The Achilles` heel of international law should be religion, as it maintains the strictest and most indisputable laws and creates the most difficult situations that the law faces. For example, the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) is one of the most important organizations within the United Nations. The organization systematically deals with issues that affect international women and their cultures. Each culture sees women differently in terms of social and political norms.
In India, CEDAW has become a tool for the Hindu majority to address the problems of the Muslim minority. In India, there are differences in legislation between universal laws that apply to all Indian citizens and “personal” laws that govern family and other relationships. Personal laws are defined and maintained by certain ethical groups, while the greatest government policy is that of non-interference in religion. These personal laws are discriminatory and facilitate violence against women. CEDAW proposed a single national code, but did not receive general support. This is a case where religion, and even more so “culture,” was guilty of the inaction and ineffectiveness of international law. Cultural understanding and empathy are essential in international law, because the interpretation of a law can go from one culture to another and, in this globalized world, we must take cultural differences into account.