Lost in the tumult of the past 10 days over the Suleimani strike was the president’s announcement on Jan. 3 of his intent to nominate a new legal adviser, Ambassador C.J. Mahoney, to replace Jennifer Newstead, who resigned last April to become general counsel of Facebook.
John B. Bellinger III is a partner in the international and national security law practices at Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer LLP in Washington, DC. He is also Adjunct Senior Fellow in International and National Security Law at the Council on Foreign Relations. He served as The Legal Adviser for the Department of State from 2005–2009, as Senior Associate Counsel to the President and Legal Adviser to the National Security Council at the White House from 2001–2005, and as Counsel for National Security Matters in the Criminal Division of the Department of Justice from 1997–2001.
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President Trump has doubled down on his threat to bomb Iranian cultural sites if Iran attacks the United States in response to the killing of Qassem Soleimani. Administration officials should affirm publicly that the United States will comply with its legal obligations during armed conflicts.
Every American—and especially every member of Congress—should read Judge Webster’s words on the current threat to the rule of law.
At the Munich Security Conference on Feb. 16, a group of former world leaders released a Declaration of Principles aimed at reaffirming shared democratic principles and a rules-based order in response to the rising tide of authoritarianism and anti-democratic trends in many countries.
Below is an excerpt from the letter of 50 former senior national security officials who had served in Republican administrations dated Aug. 8, 2016 in which we stated that if elected president, Donald Trump “would be the most reckless President in American history”:
The obituaries of President George H.W. Bush have appropriately focused on his foreign policy successes, especially his deft diplomatic handling of the collapse of the Soviet Union and the reunification of Germany as well as his firm but ultimately restrained response to Saddam’s invasion of Kuwait. One reason for his success is that he entered office with more foreign policy experience than any other president, having served not only as vice president for eight years but also previously as director of central intelligence, ambassador to the United Nations and as envoy to China.
Thoughts on the ICJ’s Decision in Iran v United States and the Trump Administration’s Treaty Withdrawals
I want to supplement Elena Chachko’s useful analysis of Wednesday’s International Court of Justice decision in the case of Iran v.