“On Target”: Precision & Balance in the Contemporary Law of Targeting

“On Target”: Precision & Balance in the Contemporary Law of Targeting

Schmitt and Widmar explore the law of targeting within international humanitarian law (IHL) and its application to international and non-international armed conflict. The article examines the “five elements” of a target operation, including the target, the weapon used, the execution of the attack, possible collateral damage and incidental injury, and location of the strike. The […]

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Setting the Record Straight: An In-Depth Review of “Duty” by Robert Gates

Setting the Record Straight: An In-Depth Review of “Duty” by Robert Gates

Bowman “sets the record straight” with his review of Bob Gates’ new book, Duty. He states that Duty is not a “tell all,” but rather a highly personal and almost daily reflection of what Gates thought and experienced during his time as US Secretary of Defense. Ultimately, Bowman concludes that while the book is very […]

A Proposal to Reduce Government Overclassification of Information Related to National Security

A Proposal to Reduce Government Overclassification of Information Related to National Security

Lin explores the phenomenon of overclassification in American society and proposes a classification cost metric in order to create serious economic incentives to reduce classification. The metric would provide decision makers with a way to judge the relative importance of different classified documents and allow officials to classify documents on a more objective scale. The […]

Under the Radar: NSA’s Efforts to Secure Private-Sector Telecommunications Infrastructure

Under the Radar: NSA’s Efforts to Secure Private-Sector Telecommunications Infrastructure

Landau explains the National Security Agency’s little-known function of providing communications security (COMSEC) to private companies, which has involved an improvement of security and privacy of the domestic communications infrastructure. She examines the history of the program and how the NSA’s behavior towards the private sector has shifted since the 1950’s, as well as the […]

Of Guns & Grotius

Of Guns & Grotius

Kellman discusses the breakthroughs in the development of explosive weapons since the 13th century. He then analyzes the evolution of theories on the international law of war as expounded by Grotius, Gentili, and Vatel. He argues that these scholars should have instead developed an international law of peace; he hypothesizes what the foundation of law […]

Addressing the Guantanamo “Legacy Problem”: Bringing Law-of-War Prolonged Military Detention & Criminal Prosecution into Closer Alignment

Addressing the Guantanamo “Legacy Problem”: Bringing Law-of-War Prolonged Military Detention & Criminal Prosecution into Closer Alignment

Abrams seeks to move the discussion on Guantanamo detainees forward by bringing law-of-war detention and criminal prosecution into closer alignment. The article analyzes the Obama Administration’s current approach of dealing with terrorists captured abroad and its preference for conducting criminal prosecutions whenever feasible. Abrams proposes several changes to the current system, including a decision-making framework […]