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International and Foreign

What to Expect from Next Week’s Fifth CCW Review Conference Focusing on Lethal Autonomous Weapons

On Monday, the Fifth Review Conference of the High Contracting Parties to the Convention on Prohibitions or Restrictions on the Use of Certain Conventional Weapons Which May Be Deemed to Be Excessively Injurious or to Have Indiscriminate Effects (CCW) will kick off in Geneva and focus on Lethal Autonomous Weapons Systems (LAWS).…   continue »

Human Rights Law is the Legal Basis for Use of Force Against Non-State Armed Groups—But What Follows?

In recent weeks there have been two significant and related debates on Just Security about the justification for the use of force against non-state armed groups and the place of human rights in non-international armed conflict (NIAC). Both debates address aspects of a larger question that has remained unresolved throughout the years since 9/11: how should we understand the legal framework that defines and limits a state’s resort to military force  against an armed group that threatens its security or territorial integrity?…   continue »

The Economic Incentives for International Cybersecurity Coordination

On Friday, the President’s Commission on Enhancing National Cybersecurity published its final report, making 16 recommendations and identifying 53 action items to improve cybersecurity in the United States. Established by Executive Order 13,718 last February, the nonpartisan Commission included 12 experts, some recommended by Democratic and Republican leaders in Congress and others selected by the Obama Administration.…   continue »

President Obama’s Report on the Legal and Policy Frameworks Guiding and Limiting the Use of Military Force [UPDATED]

The Administration just released five new documents relating to the use of force, including detention, in counterterrorism operations against nonstate armed groups. The most important of these is this remarkable report, which comprehensively describes the domestic and international legal bases for the United States’ ongoing use of military force overseas and some of the key legal and policy frameworks that the law and the Obama Administration have established to govern and limit such uses of force and related national security operations, such as detention, transfer, and interrogation operations.…   continue »

Memo to President Obama: You Have Another Memo to Withdraw

The election of Donald Trump has triggered an anxious conversation about how President Obama can entrench some of his accomplishments before January 21, 2017.  Importantly, given the Trump campaign’s embrace of waterboarding and “worse”, President Obama would do well to ensure that he has fully dismantled the Bush Administration’s post-9/11 detention and interrogation system.…   continue »

New ICRC Survey: Large Global Divide in Public Respect for Humanitarian Norms

A massive global survey on the laws of war includes some striking findings on public attitudes, including large differences of opinion that vary according to where people live. One of the most consistent survey results, for example, finds that people who live in war-torn countries are more likely to respond humanely to questions on the laws of war—compared to the populations of the five permanent members of the Security Council (P5) plus Switzerland.…   continue »

Human Rights in Armed Conflict, Part I

When powerful States adopt a mistaken view of international law, should we—scholars, practitioners, and activists—resist their view and insist on our own? Or should we regard their mistake as a fait accompli and try to contain its adverse consequences? With Donald Trump poised to become the next President of the United States, I fear that we will all face such questions in the years to come.…   continue »