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Tag Archives: John McCain

A Quick Primer on AUMFs

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Sunday, September 1, 2013 at 6:06 AM

Via Ilya Somin at Volokh, I see that the administration has proffered its proposed Authorization for the Use of Military Force (AUMF) for Syria.  Now it is Congress’s turn to decide what proposal(s) it wants to debate and possibly approve.  And it appears that the scope of the authorization will be an issue in Congress. . . .
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The President’s Speech: Lawmakers React to Obama’s Renewed Transfer Efforts

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Friday, May 24, 2013 at 2:45 PM

Among the policies President Obama announced in his speech: a renewed commitment to transfer detainees to third countries, where possible. To that end, he said he would appoint a new GTMO-focused envoy at the Departments of State and Defense.  (Recall that the State Department office responsible for transfers was closed earlier this year and its primary staffer re-assigned). . . .
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Congress Must Figure Out What Our Government Is Doing In The Name of the AUMF

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Friday, May 17, 2013 at 10:02 AM

A common assumption in the debate about the appropriate legal regime for extra-AUMF threats is that the AUMF is cabined and cannot be extended to newly threatening Islamist terrorist threats.  Yesterday’s SASC hearing exploded this assumption.  The hearing made clear that the Obama administration’s long insistence that it is deeply legally restrained under the AUMF . . .
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The Way of the Knife: The CIA, a Secret Army, and a War at the Ends of the Earth

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Wednesday, May 1, 2013 at 12:00 PM

I have a long review in the New Republic of Mark Mazzetti’s excellent new book, The Way of the Knife.  The first half of the review simply summarizes the book, the main point of which is to demonstrate how since 9/11 the CIA and DOD have changed to become like one another.  In short, the CIA has become (in . . .
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Chemical Weapons in Syria: Enough to Justify the Use of Force?

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Friday, April 26, 2013 at 10:25 PM

Now that the United States has acknowledged – with a modest level of confidence – that the Syrian government has used chemical weapons against the rebels, many press articles are asking whether (or arguing that) the United States should consider using force in Syria. See, for example, here, here, and here. Senators McCain and Feinstein . . .
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Senator Graham on Tsarnaev and Miranda

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Tuesday, April 23, 2013 at 10:54 AM

Yesterday, Senator Lindsey Graham held a press conference, in which he unsurprisingly lamented the White House’s decision not to treat Dzhokhar Tsarnaev as an “enemy combatant.” A transcript is below. GRAHAM: Thank you for coming. I understand at 2:50, we’re going to have a moment of silence as a nation for the victims in Boston. . . .
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Four Reasons Sens. Graham and McCain are Wrong

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Saturday, April 20, 2013 at 9:47 AM

Sens. Lindsey Graham and John McCain were quick out of the box last night in declaring that the Obama administration should hold Dzhokar Tsarnaev in military detention: Now that the suspect is in custody, the last thing we should want is for him to remain silent. It is absolutely vital the suspect be questioned for intelligence gathering purposes. . . .
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More on Drone Shift from CIA to DOD

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Thursday, March 21, 2013 at 7:56 PM

Following up on Wells’ post, I increasingly think that the shift in drone authorities from CIA to DOD  first reported by Dan Klaidman might not amount to much in substance, and that any proposed changes face many hurdles in any event.  In addition to the suggestions to this effect in the  NYT story that Wells discusses, the . . .
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Two Additional Thoughts on Senator Paul’s Filibuster

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Friday, March 8, 2013 at 10:52 AM

First, I objected to the large mischaracterizations in Senator Paul’s remarks, and think the ones about our targeting practices abroad were especially damaging.  But there is no doubt that Senator Paul succeeded wildly in focusing public (and congressional) attention on the issues of drone policy, excessive administration secrecy, the scope of the conflict, and the . . .
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More from Senate Amici on Oral Argument in Hedges

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Wednesday, January 9, 2013 at 2:23 PM

From the Hedges files: attorneys for Senators McCain, Ayotte, and Graham yesterday submitted this reply brief in support of their motion to participate in oral argument before the Second Circuit.  (The Hedges plaintiffs had opposed amici’s request to take part.) Interestingly, the Senators’ counsel highlight their clients’ unique institutional position relative to that of the executive . . .
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Senators Ask for Argument Time in Hedges

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Wednesday, December 26, 2012 at 10:34 AM

Senators John McCain, Lindsey Graham, and Kelly Ayotte—who jointly filed an amicus brief in the Hedges appeal—are asking for argument time in the coming Second Circuit oral argument. They argue: Senate Amici played a leadership role in the drafting and enact- ment of Section 1021 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fis- cal Year . . .
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Senate Intelligence Committee Interrogation Report Approved—But Not Released

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Friday, December 14, 2012 at 9:36 AM

Well, we know it’s long—more than 6,000 pages long. We know it’s critical. And we know it was approved on a 9-to-6 vote. Here’s the statement by Sen. Dianne Feinstein, who chairs the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, on the committee’s report on CIA detention and and interrogation: The committee’s report is more than 6,000 . . .
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Amicus Brief Filed in Hedges by Senators McCain, Graham, and Ayotte

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Wednesday, November 14, 2012 at 3:23 PM

Attorneys for Senators John McCain, Lindsey Graham, and Kelly Ayotte—all members of the Senate Committee on Armed Services—have filed an amicus brief in support of the government in Hedges v. Obama.  (Background here.) From the brief’s “Introduction and Summary of Argument” section: Because “detention to prevent a combatant’s return to the battlefield is a fundamental incident . . .
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Obama v. Bush on Counterterrorism Policy

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Sunday, November 11, 2012 at 1:18 AM

I agree with much of what Jack says in his recent post about the counterterrorism issues likely to face President Obama in his second term.  But there’s one aspect of how Jack frames the discussion that I disagree with somewhat.  Because a number of other commentators seem to use the same basic framing, I thought I’d . . .
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Response to Paul on Cyber-Regulation for Critical Infrastructure

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Monday, May 21, 2012 at 12:11 PM

Last week Paul outlined his case against regulation of cybersecurity for Critical Infrastructure (CI).  He promises more analysis to come, but I wanted to post a few responses now, for while I don’t love government regulation, and while I agree with much of what Paul says, I do not find his case on its terms . . .
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The Unpersuasiveness of the Case for Cybersecurity Regulation – An Introduction

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Thursday, May 17, 2012 at 12:35 PM

My friend, Jack Goldsmith, wonders whether my earlier post about the pending Congressional proposal to regulate cybersecurity was a reference to General Alexander’s failure to persuade Senator McCain of the merits of a regulatory program, or an expression of my own view.  He rightly concludes that it was a little bit of both – mostly . . .
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The Persuasive General Alexander, and Why Critical Infrastructure Protection Regulation is . . . Critical

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Thursday, May 10, 2012 at 9:30 AM

When Paul says that General Alexander’s response to Senator McCain’s letter over pending cybersecurity legislation is “unpersuasive,” I cannot tell whether Paul found it unpersuasive or whether he is referring to Senator McCain, who clearly found it unpersuasive.  What I find unpersuasive is Senator McCain’s letter and, more generally, those who oppose outright not only . . .
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The Unpersuasive General Alexander

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Wednesday, May 9, 2012 at 2:08 PM

Yesterday, as Raff reported, General Keith Alexander (Cyber Command and NSA) wrote a letter to Senator McCain explaining his views and, implicitly supporting the Obama Administration’s proposal for a regulatory approach to cyber security.  Senator McCain isn’t persuaded, as this letter to General Alexander makes clear.  A taste of McCain’s views on the regulatory structures: . . .
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Susan Landau on Cybersecurity Bills

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Thursday, May 3, 2012 at 7:15 AM

Susan Landau is currently a visiting scholar at Harvard’s Computer Science Department, formerly a Distinguished Engineer at Sun Microsystems, and the author of Surveillance or Security? The Risks Posed by New Wiretapping Technologies.  She is also one of the most knowledgeable people I know about cybersecurity policy.   She writes in with this comment about the pending . . .
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The Politics of the Cyber Legislation Debate

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Thursday, April 19, 2012 at 11:48 AM

Over the past several weeks, I’ve written a number of blogs about the substance of the cybersecurity bills pending before Congress.  As the House moves to consider cyber legislation next week and as the Senate prepares to begin its debate, I wanted to offer a brief comment on the politics of the debate. That question . . .
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