Why have Arab states chosen to solidify their boundaries through International Court of Justice (ICJ) adjudication? What patterns of discourse emerge in reading the pleadings and what can we conclude more broadly about international law's legitimacy in this 'post' colonial era? The following article demonstrates the value of applying critical methodologies to territorial adjudication. In particular, the article reveals how the dichotomy between law and politics is the central linguistic device structuring both legal speech and its silences. Discursive strategies are highlighted to show the extent to which Third World – and especially Arab – experiences continue to be silenced by the conventions of ICJ speech.