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Category Archives: AUMF

The Administration’s Hard-To-Fathom Draft AUMF

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Thursday, February 12, 2015 at 6:33 AM

Before I get to analysis and criticism, let me give the Obama administration credit for proposing a draft AUMF yesterday.  The administration’s many promises about working with Congress to craft an AUMF for the Islamic State (ISIL), combined with the lack of a concrete proposal that has long been the President’s responsibility, had led me . . .
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Notes on Reading the President’s AUMF Proposal

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Wednesday, February 11, 2015 at 10:36 AM

Here are the key policy judgments in the President’s AUMF proposal: “The President is authorized . . . to use the Armed Forces of the United States as the President determines to be necessary and appropriate against ISIL or associated persons or forces. . . .” This is a slightly odd formulation that differs from the . . .
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White House ISIL AUMF Released to Congress

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Wednesday, February 11, 2015 at 9:52 AM

This morning, the White House released a proposed Authorization for the Use of Military Force against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant to Congress. You can find the AUMF transmittal letter and the text of the draft AUMF below. Lawfare will have more on the proposed draft in the days to come. AUMF Transmittal . . .
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Will President Obama Go Where He Promised He Wouldn’t?

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Wednesday, February 11, 2015 at 8:16 AM

Over at Just Security, Steve Vladeck and a group of scholars have posted a letter to President Obama asking him to include in his AUMF proposal not merely a sunset for the new ISIS AUMF but one for the underlying 2001 AUMF too. “We think it is . . . vitally important that any statute . . .
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The Meaningful Legal Differences Between Stateside and Guantánamo Detention

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Thursday, February 5, 2015 at 3:30 PM

Gabor’s post from this morning, which is styled as a response to Ben’s thoughtful analysis of what it will take to close Guantánamo (while ignoring some of the other responses), concludes that the only meaningful way to “close” Guantánamo is for President Obama “to either release all detainees or try them in our time-tested federal courts,” at least largely . . .
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Why a Sunset Clause is Important in Any New AUMF

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Thursday, February 5, 2015 at 10:24 AM

The rumors circulating that the administration might in the next week finally present a draft AUMF against the Islamic State causes me to ask: What is the point of a new AUMF? Military operations against al Qaeda and its associates and the Taliban – in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia, and almost certainly (according to Mark . . .
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How Not to Close Guantanamo: Bring It Here

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Thursday, February 5, 2015 at 9:46 AM

Ben asks “What Would it Take to Close Guantanamo?” and he provides a thoughtful response weighted toward the political landscape. But there’s another not-so-merely-philosophical question that underlies his question: what does it mean to “close Guantanamo?” For purposes of rapprochement with Cuba it may have to mean U.S. out of Guantanamo altogether. That’s not going . . .
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Rep. Adam Schiff Introduces Updated AUMF

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Wednesday, January 28, 2015 at 5:38 PM

Representative Adam Schiff (D-CA), who serves as the ranking member on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, has released a revised and updated draft Authorization for the Use of Military Force against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria. The bill is broadly similar the one that Representative Schiff introduced last September. Like the previous . . .
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What the Detention Policy Debate Really Is About

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Monday, January 26, 2015 at 2:16 PM

Ben bemoans the state our nation’s current debate over Guantanamo as “terrible,” observing that “the arguments about Guantanamo are nearly all wrong, disingenuous, irrelevant, or just plain dumb.”  It’s true that Guantanamo—like most political issues—sometimes takes on a special kind of inside-the-beltway rhetorical flavor that can really annoy the wonks, who would much rather focus . . .
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The Obama Administration Does Not Want a New AUMF

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Wednesday, January 21, 2015 at 6:35 AM

Last night the President “call[ed] on this Congress to show the world that we are united in this mission by passing a resolution to authorize the use of force against ISIL.”  This comes on the heels of his November statement that “I’m going to begin engaging Congress over a new authorization to use military force . . .
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Relevant Passages of President Obama’s State of the Union Address

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Tuesday, January 20, 2015 at 9:32 PM

The following are the passages of tonight’s State of the Union address that seem to me most relevant to the Lawfare readership: Tonight, for the first time since 9/11, our combat mission in Afghanistan is over.  Six years ago, nearly 180,000 American troops served in Iraq and Afghanistan.  Today, fewer than 15,000 remain.  And we salute the courage . . .
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Text of Senator Ayotte’s GTMO Transfers Bill

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Tuesday, January 13, 2015 at 2:20 PM

As promised, here it is. The rather unfortunate-seeming proposal provides, in full: 114TH CONGRESS 1ST SESSION S.__ To extend and enhance prohibitions and limitations with respect to the transfer or release of individuals detained at United States Naval Station, Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and for other purposes. IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES Ms. AYOTTE (for herself, Mr. GRAHAM, . . .
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Cliff Sloan on Closing Guantanamo

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Tuesday, January 6, 2015 at 12:12 PM

Worth flagging: yesterday’s New York Times opinion piece, which was published in the wake of Sloan’s departure from the State Department last month.  The op-ed begins: WASHINGTON — WHEN I began as the State Department’s envoy for closing the detention facility at Guantánamo Bay, many people advised me that progress was impossible. They were wrong. In the . . .
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The SFRC Vote on the Menendez AUMF

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Friday, December 12, 2014 at 12:15 PM

The Senate Foreign Relations Committee voted 10-8 yesterday to approve Senator Menendez’s draft AUMF for ISIL.  As endorsed by the Committee, the bill: — Authorizes the President to use force against ISIL or against “associated forces or associated persons”  (a phrase defined to mean means “individuals and organizations fighting for or on behalf of [ISIL] . . .
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This Morning’s SFRC Business Meeting

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Thursday, December 11, 2014 at 10:45 AM

There are many subjects under discussion right now, including recent proposals to authorize force against ISIS. Update: it appears the Committee approved a draft authorization authored by the Committee’s Chairman, Senator Robert Menendez, by a vote of 10-8.

USG Closes Bagram Detention Facility

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Thursday, December 11, 2014 at 10:12 AM

The news comes from Time:  The United States Department of Defense said Thursday that it had shuttered the last American detention facility in Afghanistan, bringing to an end a controversial practice of holding prisoners in the country without trial. The U.S. said it no longer had custody of detainees in Afghanistan following the transfer on Wednesday of remaining . . .
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A Few Thoughts on Yesterday’s AUMF Hearing

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Wednesday, December 10, 2014 at 11:39 PM

Jack aptly stated earlier today many of my thoughts on yesterday’s hearing on an Islamic State AUMF—at which Secretary of State John Kerry testified. In particular, he highlighted the broad authorization the administration is seeking—one with few of the sort of accountability mechanisms Jack, Matt, Bobby and I have suggested. And he highlighted as well the . . .
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The Obama Administration Wants a Super-Broad AUMF for the Islamic State (and Other Reactions to Yesterday’s AUMF Hearing)

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Wednesday, December 10, 2014 at 2:07 PM

Secretary of State Kerry testified yesterday before the Senate Foreign Relations committee on the need for a new AUMF for the Islamic State (which Kerry referred to by the new moniker “Daesh,” and I will for now call “IS”).  It was a revealing few hours.  The Senators were well-informed and asked good questions with an . . .
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Video of Secretary of State Kerry’s Testimony on ISIL AUMF

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Tuesday, December 9, 2014 at 9:52 PM

Today before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee:

Kerry Outlines Administration Vision of an AUMF

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Tuesday, December 9, 2014 at 4:20 PM

From Secretary of State John Kerry’s prepared testimony before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee today: Toward that end, we ask you now to work closely with us on a bipartisan basis to develop language that provides a clear signal of support for our ongoing military operations against ISIL. Our position on the text is pretty straightforward . . .
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