The Week That Was

The Week that Was: All of Lawfare in One Post

By Elliot Setzer
Saturday, May 9, 2020, 11:31 AM

Susan Hennessey, Quinta Jurecic and Benjamin Wittes argued that the Justice Department made unfathomably bad arguments in seeking to dismiss the case against former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn. Robert Litt also attacked the department's argument. Charlotte Butash and Hilary Hurd discussed whether Judge Emmet Sullivan can, under the law, refuse to grant the government's dismissal motion in the case. And Mikhaila Fogel shared the Justice Department’s motion itself.

Jen Patja Howell shared an episode of the Lawfare Podcast featuring an interview with Jung Pak, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institutions and former CIA analyst and North Korea specialist, on her new book “Becoming Kim Jong Un: A Former CIA Analyst’s Insights into North Korea’s Enigmatic Young Dictator":

Benjamin Della Rocca, Samantha Fry, Masha Simonova and Jacques Singer-Emery compiled a guide to the emergency authorities state and territory executives possess to address the COVID-19 crisis.

Christine Kwon argued, in response to Attorney General William Barr's statement, that the dormant commerce clause can’t override state and local lockdowns.

Elliot Setzer analyzed efforts by U.S. states to develop digital contact-tracing apps.

Elena Chachko discussed the Israeli Supreme Court’s recent decision checking COVID-19 electronic surveillance.

Elsa Kania argued that conflicting statements from U.S. leaders are undercutting the credibility of U.S. intelligence on the coronavirus.

Rebecca Wolfe and Hilary Matfess argued the COVID-19 pandemic is only the most immediate of a set of crises to which the international community cannot adequately respond.

Alex Zaheer and Tom Westphal argued COVID-19 will exacerbate concerns about the security of digital election systems.

Scott Anderson and Margaret Taylor warned that a potential partisan split on remote congressional voting could stall progress on the initiative.

William Ford summarized a Senate subcommittee roundtable discussion on the viability and constitutionality of conducting Senate votes and other proceedings remotely.

And Patja Howell shared an episode of The Lawfare Podcast in which Taylor sat down with Tony Mills, director of science policy at the R Street Institute, to talk about Congress’s institutional limitations in responding to the coronavirus:

Henning Lahmann argued that International Court of Justice precedent will probably thwart any efforts to make China pay compensation for damages caused by the coronavirus.

Jonathan Odom argued that state-parties to the U.N. Convention on the Law of the Sea have a lawful and peaceful way to uphold the international rule of law and counter China’s disregard of a 2016 arbitral tribunal’s legally binding ruling on the South China Sea: refusing to vote for China’s nominee to the treaty’s tribunal.

Patja Howell shared an episode of Rational Security discussing the confirmation of Rep. John Ratcliffe to become the next director of national intelligence:

Speaking of Rational Security, there is still space left in our live taping of the show this coming week—Wednesday at 2:30 pm—for which you can register here (registration is required).

Elena Kagan shared a bonus edition of the Lawfare Podcast: a distilled version of the Ratcliffe nomination hearing with meanderings and grandstanding removed:

Setzer shared a livestream of the hearing.

And prior to the hearing, Nicholas Rasmussen and Margaret Taylor wrote eleven questions the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence should ask Ratcliffe.

Scott Anderson and Ashley Deeks asked whether a recent private military incursion by former green berets violated the 1794 Neutrality Act by invading Venezuela.

Patja Howell shared an episode of the Lawfare Podcast featuring an interview with Aric Toler of Bellingcat on how not to report on disinformation:

Michel Paradis asked whether a major change to military justice is in the works.

Peter Margulies summarized a Ninth Circuit ruling denying the government’s request for a stay of a nationwide preliminary injunction against a presidential proclamation barring admission of immigrants without “approved” health insurance.

Patja Howell shared an episode of the Lawfare Podcast featuring an interview with Daniel Immerwahr, professor of history at Northwestern University, about the law and policy of American empire:

Bobby Cheney and Steve Vladeck shared an episode of the National Security Law Podcast discussing the Office of the Director of National Intelligence’s report on FISA statistics:

Ari Schwartz argued that standards bodies are under friendly fire in the war on Huawei.

Stewart Baker shared an episode of the Cyberlaw Podcast discussing a new U.S. measure to secure its supply chain for the bulk power grid:

And Steve Slick shared a call for papers for the University of Texas at Austin’s 2020 Bobby R. Inman Award for student scholarship on intelligence.

And that was the week that was.