Lawfare Cat Fight

By Benjamin Wittes
Thursday, May 19, 2011, 3:49 PM

Concerning the Law of the Sea, John Bellinger III writes today over at the Shadow Government blog:

Of all the treaties currently pending before the Senate, the Law of the Sea Convention offers the most extensive economic and national security advantages to the American people. There is still time on the Senate calendar this year to consider and approve it. President Obama should make it his administration's top treaty priority, and Senate Republicans should support its passage.

This puts him rather at odds with Jack who, some time back, co-wrote in this oped:

ratifying the convention . . . would put America's naval counterterrorism efforts under the control of foreign judges. Suppose the United States seizes a vessel it suspects of shipping dual-use items that might be utilized to build weapons of mass destruction or other tools of terrorism. It's not a wild supposition. Under the Proliferation Security Initiative, the United States has since 2003 secured proliferation-related high-seas interdiction agreements with countries such as Belize and Panama, which provide registration for much international shipping. If the United States ratifies the Convention on the Law of the Sea, the legality of such seizures will, depending on the circumstances, be left to the decision of one of two international tribunals.

I say we settle this with pistols at high noon.