Rita Siemion

As Director of National Security Advocacy at Human Rights First, Rita Siemion (@ritasiemion) advocates for national security and counterterrorism policies that respect human rights and the rule of law. She is an expert in the intersecting legal frameworks that govern counterterrorism operations at home and abroad, including the law of armed conflict, international human rights law, and state sovereignty law. She leads the organization’s effort to ensure that US national security policies comply with these bodies of international law as well as with domestic law limitations on the authority to use force and conduct war.

Rita also serves as Adjunct Professor of Law at the Georgetown University Law Center, and Associate Adjunct Professor at American University Washington College of Law, where she teaches courses on national security, human rights, foreign relations, the law of armed conflict, and war powers. Before joining Human Rights First, Rita worked on a range of national security issues as Senior Counsel at The Constitution Project, including surveillance and privacy rights in the digital age, and spent several years in private practice litigating civil and human rights matters.

Rita holds an LL.M. in National Security Law, with a certificate in International Human Rights Law, from the Georgetown University Law Center, where she graduated with distinction and was a peer review editor for the Journal of National Security Law & Policy. Rita received her J.D., with honors, from the George Washington University School of Law, where she has also taught as an Adjunct Professor of Legal Research and Writing. While in law school, she co-founded the Human Rights Law Society, worked on targeted killing and extraordinary rendition litigation with the International Human Rights Clinic, and studied human rights and counterterrorism at Oxford University. She has a B.A. in English, with a minor in Philosophy, from Seattle University, where she graduated from the Honors Program.

 

Articles by this author:

Toward a New Approach to National and Human Security: End Endless War

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Sep 11th, 2020

Toward a New Approach to National and Human Security: Uphold the Prohibition on Torture

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Sep 11th, 2020

Toward a New Approach to National and Human Security: End Unlawful, Secret, and Unaccountable Use of Lethal Force

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Sep 11th, 2020

Toward a New Approach to National and Human Security: Close Guantanamo and End Indefinite Detention

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Sep 11th, 2020

Toward a New Approach to National and Human Security: Introduction

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Sep 11th, 2020

An Incremental Step Toward Stopping Forever War?

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Jul 13th, 2020

Grading DOD’s Annual Civilian Casualties Report: “Incomplete”

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May 7th, 2020

Lessons From a Torture Advocate’s Failed Bid for a Key Human Rights Position

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May 5th, 2020

What to Watch For in White House’s Annual Report on Use of Military Force

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Feb 29th, 2020

The 30-Day Clock: Recent Law Requires Trump Admin. to Make Full Public Report on Soleimani and Shahlai Strikes

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Jan 13th, 2020

How Trump Could Really End “Endless Wars”

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Nov 1st, 2019

Expert Summaries of Mueller Report: A Collection

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Aug 20th, 2019

The Pentagon’s 2018 Civilian Casualties Report: What’s In It and What’s Next

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May 2nd, 2019

Trump’s Revocation of Reporting on Lethal Strikes: All Eyes on Congress, Now

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Mar 8th, 2019

The Pentagon’s Latest Report on Civilian Casualties Policy

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Feb 12th, 2019

What to Make of the Pentagon’s Internal Civilian Casualties Review, and What Comes Next

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Feb 4th, 2019

The Status of Guantanamo 17 Years In

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Jan 11th, 2019

The Pentagon Put Someone in Charge of Its Civilian Casualty Policy. Now What?

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Nov 14th, 2018

How Dangerous—and How New—Is the Defense Department’s “Collective Self-Defense” Theory?

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Oct 30th, 2018

Post-9/11 Generation Reaches Enlistment Age in Unmoored ‘War on Terror’

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Sep 18th, 2018

Two Important New Civilian Casualties Provisions in the Defense Authorization Bill

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Jul 24th, 2018

Does Congress Really Think It’s Reasserting Its War Powers by Giving Them Away to Trump?

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Apr 11th, 2018