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Executive & Military

The War in Afghanistan is Far from Over

Tuesday was an ominous one for news about Afghanistan. While much of the media’s attention has recently been focused on Syria, Iraq, and Ebola, NATO is still facing challenges as it tries to withdraw from Afghanistan in a way that ensures 13 years of war there have not been for nothing.…   continue »

“Just looking for loopholes…”

…is what W. C. Fields supposedly said when someone found him leafing through the Bible. Apparently some lawyers in the Obama administration are following Fields’s lead, and may succeed in returning to the kind of loophole lawyering of the Bush administration’s “torture memos,” in order to fend off constraints on prisoner abuse abroad.…   continue »

Ebola Could Become President Obama’s Katrina

Ebola could become President Barack Obama’s hurricane Katrina in terms of the inadequacy of the government’s response. The US government is in reaction mode, seemingly surprised by each new ebola-related event. Downplaying the threat, as Obama did in his Oct. 15 speech on the virus, is dangerous, because each new case undermines the government’s credibility to a greater extent.…   continue »

One More Thing on Goldsmith & Waxman

There is not much to add to my colleague Shalev Roisman’s response to Jack Goldsmith and Matthew Waxman’s essay in The New Republic arguing that it is President Obama, and not President Bush, that is the “master of unilateral war.” Shalev nicely exposes the flaws in this argument, explaining how the examples of Obama’s unilateralism proffered by the pair of former Bush administration lawyers do not quite add up to the conclusion their provocative headline promises.…   continue »

Rejecting the Bush Comparison: A Response to Goldsmith & Waxman

Jack Goldsmith and Matthew Waxman have written an interesting essay on President Obama’s war powers legacy, boldly titled “Obama, not Bush, is the Master of Unilateral War.” As I have argued about an analogous claim made by Professor Bruce Ackerman, I think that the comparison to President Bush is unfounded and distracts from some interesting and valid concerns that Goldsmith and Waxman point out.…   continue »