It is time for the new Administration to be thinking about the difficult decisions it has to make regarding current and future wartime detention of enemy fighters. Developing a principled, credible, and sustainable detention policy will require more than simply undoing the policies of the prior administration.
Latest in Annals of the Trump Administration
President Trump's continued use of a dangerously insecure, out-of-date Android device should cause real panic.
President-Elect Trump has a broad immigration and border security agenda (at least according to his campaign promises). How much of it can he actually achieve? Most of it. We examine the details.
In a post earlier today, I highlighted a variety of recent developments in which the Obama administration has adjusted constraints on using force under color of the AUMF, based in part on the report in
With less than two months to go before it hands over power to the Trump administration, the Obama administration is continuing to fine-tune the legal, policy, and institutional architectures that guide its approach to the ongoing conflict with al Qaeda. Under that heading, I want to flag some important recent developments.
1. AUMF expansion: al Shabaab is now a full-fledged "associated force"
President-Elect Trump wants DoD to defend the civilian cyber infrastructure. That's probablly illegal. It's also a bad idea.
Annals of the Trump Administration #5: Would Waterboarding Count as "Force," and Must It Be Disclosed?
Katherine Hawkins at the Constitution Project tweeted some good points in response to my earlier posts on Trump, interrogation, and waterboarding (here and here). One concerns the possibility that the NDAA FY'15 in fact does prohibit a Field Manual amendment that would include waterboarding.
Over at War on the Rocks, I have a post explaining that a new statute will be needed in order for General Mattis to serve as Secretary of Defense. It's been done once before, with George Marshall during the Truman Administration.
In a prior post I discussed the Trump administration's apparent interest in reviving waterboarding as an interrogation method, noted that a federal statute forbids resort to any interrogation method not listed in the relevant Army Field Manual, and explained that the Trump administration might try to overcome that barrier by pushing to have the manual amended to include a classified annex authorizing waterboarding.
What security-related executive orders are likely to be repealed in whole or in part soon after Donald Trump is sworn in as president? I list some obvious ones below, and will be happy to update the list with predictions others may send me.
1. Executive Order 13491 (Jan. 22, 2009) ("Ensuring Lawful Interrogation")