Emma Kohse

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Emma Kohse is a J.D. Candidate at Harvard Law School, where she serves as editor-in-chief of the Harvard International Law Journal, and a 2012 graduate of Georgetown University's School for Foreign Service.

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To Split or Not to Split: The Future of CYBERCOM’s Relationship with NSA

U.S. Cyber Command (CYBERCOM) is the U.S. armed forces command charged with offensive and defensive cyber operations. Since 2010, it has coexisted with NSA as two organizations under one director. It is simultaneously embedded within U.S. Strategic Command (STRATCOM), a functional (i.e., non-geographic) command with broader responsibility for detecting and deterring strategic attacks against the United States. Both arrangements are likely coming to an end in the near future.

Case Coverage: Military Commissions

This Week at the Military Commissions, 3/22 Session: Truth, Emotional Currency, and the Law of War

Military judge Army Colonel James Pohl calls the commission to order at 8:59 AM, noting that none of the five detainees have chosen to attend this morning’s session. Prosecution team member Robert Swann calls an unnamed U.S. Army Captain to testify to the procedures by which the detainees waived their rights to be present, and Judge Pohl enters a finding that the absences both today and yesterday were knowing and voluntary.

Case Coverage: Military Commissions

This Week at the Military Commissions, 3/8 Session: Wouldn’t It Be Nice to Talk About the Cole?

Editor's Note: Our military commissions coverage will be out of order this week due to difficulties in accessing transcripts from the Office of Military Commissions website. As such, coverage for Wednesday, March 8th has been published before coverage for Tuesday, March 7th. We apologize for the inconvenience.


Interrogation: Interrogation Abuses: Civil Liability

Trump’s DOJ to Assert State Secrets Privilege in Salim v. Mitchell

It looks like the DOJ is going to invoke the state secrets privilege after all in the latest CIA torture suit brought by former detainees, marking the first time that the Trump administration will use this powerful legal tool. But in an interesting variation on the typical post-9/11 state secrets cases, this time it is the defendants rather than the plaintiffs who seek to introduce information that the government alleges may harm national security.


U.S. Government Supports Lower Court Decision that Navy Members’ Fukushima Suit Can Proceed in United States

In March 2011, a magnitude 9.0 earthquake rocked the eastern Japanese coastline, causing 100-foot waves, massive damage, and nuclear meltdown at the Fukushima-Daiichi plant. The following day, the U.S.S. Ronald Reagan arrived near Fukushima to carry out Operation Tomodachi (“friend”), a $90 million humanitarian assistance operation. In a class action lawsuit filed in the Southern District of California, U.S.

Executive Power

Washington v. Trump: Summary of Ninth Circuit Decision Upholding TRO in Trump Travel Ban Case

In a per curiam decision, the Ninth Circuit has denied the Trump administration’s request for a stay of the temporary restraining order (TRO) enjoining the enforcement of Executive Order 13769 while its appeal is pending. The panel (Circuit Judges William C. Canby, Richard R. Clifton, and Michelle T.

Interrogation: Interrogation Abuses: Civil Liability

Salim v. Mitchell: ATS Suit Against CIA Contractors Survives Second Motion to Dismiss

The jurisdictional and procedural barriers are high for plaintiffs seeking to hold individuals liable for post-9/11 U.S. counterterrorism programs. But a torture suit brought by alien plaintiffs against two American CIA contractors seems likely to reach a trial on the merits after surviving a second motion to dismiss last Friday.