The Week That Was

The Week that Was: All of Lawfare in One Post

By Lev Sugarman
Saturday, February 2, 2019, 9:42 AM

Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats and the leaders of the CIA, NSA, FBI, DIA, and NGIA testified on Tuesday before the Senate intelligence committee on worldwide threats. Matthew Kahn shared the livestream and an edition of the Lawfare Podcast Shorts featuring an abridged, no-bull version of the three hour hearing:

Steve Stransky summarized the key content of the testimony, including cyber threats and the security of U.S. elections. Following the hearing, President Trump harshly criticized the intelligence chiefs’ assessments and questioned their credibility. David Priess considered the possible reasons why U.S. intelligence leaders didn’t resign in light of the President’s comments.

Mikhaila Fogel shared a memorandum filed by the special counsel’s office in the Concord Management case alleging that discovery materials were stolen, altered and distributed in an effort to discredit the investigation. Matthew Kahn shared a motion filed by Robert Mueller in the Roger Stone case seeking to delay Stone’s trial to give prosecutors more time to sift through years of Stone’s communication records obtained after his arrest. Chuck Rosenberg argued that the FBI’s tactics in arresting Roger Stone were appropriate in light of Stone’s threats to kill a witness.

Benjamin Wittes analyzed a Watergate document regarding the House Judiciary Committee's request to the special prosecutor for evidence relevant to the committee’s impeachment inquiry, explaining its parallels to Mueller’s investigation today.

Mikhaila Fogel shared a edition of the Lawfare Podcast Shorts featuring Wittes’s reading of the article:

In light of the flurry of congressional investigations expected to heat up in the coming months, Margaret Taylor examined how a showdown between the congressional subpoena power and presidential assertion of executive privilege could play out.

Jen Patja Howell shared an episode of the Lawfare Podcast on this question, in which Molly Reynolds and former House of Representatives general counsel Stan Brand discussed subpoena enforcement and congressional contempt:

In foreign policy, Robert Litwak explored the advantages of a transactional diplomatic approach in achieving nonproliferation objectives in Iran and North Korea for this week’s Foreign Policy Essay.

Curtis Bradley and Jack Goldsmith considered the legalities of Trump’s reported desire to withdraw from NATO.

And Matthew Waxman reflected on the broad authorization for the use of military force in defense of Taiwan signed by President Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1955.

Moving elsewhere in the world, Alan Bersin and Nate Bruggeman examined Mexican President López Obrador’s plan to use the military to stabilize the country’s precarious security situation.

In her latest Brexit installment, Amanda Sloat discussed the U.K. parliament’s recent actions intended to ramp up the pressure on Prime Minister Theresa May.

Diego A. Zambrano explained how the Venezuelan Constitution supports Juan Guaidó’s claim to the presidency.

And Jen Patja Howell shared an edition of Rational Security, in which Tamara Cofman Wittes, Shane Harris, Susan Hennessey and Benjamin Wittes spoke about the political crisis in Venezuela, reporting on a UAE cyber army and more:

Robert Chesney and Steve Vladeck shared the most recent installment of The National Security Law Podcast, in which the discussion ranged from Venezuela and U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan to terrorism prosecutions and the indictment of Chinese telecom giant Huawei:

Lev Sugarman posted the Justice Department’s indictment of the conglomerate, two of its subsidiaries, and its chief financial officer on charges including fraud, obstruction of justice and Iran sanction violations.

In technology policy and cyber issues, Daphne Keller analyzed the state of free speech and content moderation on digital platforms for the Hoover Institution’s latest Aegis Paper. Evelyn Douek analyzed Facebook’s charter for its new content moderation board. And Stewart Baker shared an episode of the Cyberlaw Podcast featuring Chinese cyber espionage, the right to be forgotten, and more:

Jacques Singer-Emery summarized oral arguments heard by the D.C. Circuit concerning the Nashiri military commission.

Betsy Cooper announced a call for applications for a paid Policy Incubator Fellowship for technology professionals with the Aspen Tech Policy Hub.

Finally, Jen Patja Howell shared an episode of the Lawfare Podcast in which Benjamin Wittes and political scientist Jeffrey Tulis discussed Tulis’s book, “The Rhetorical Presidency” and its revelance to the Trump era:

And that was the week that was.