The National Security Law Podcast: Live from Singapore, Malaysia?!

Robert Chesney, Steve Vladeck
Wednesday, June 13, 2018, 2:44 PM

Ok, Steve and Bobby are not actually in Singapore (we sent Dennis Rodman instead). As usual, they’re up on the sixth floor at Texas Law, bringing you the following this week:

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Ok, Steve and Bobby are not actually in Singapore (we sent Dennis Rodman instead). As usual, they’re up on the sixth floor at Texas Law, bringing you the following this week:

  1. Doe v. Mattis: Because we can’t go a week without some fascinating development in this case. This time, it was the surprise announcement last Wednesday that the Defense Department wants to go ahead and release him after all, but to do so in a way that would drop him off in SDF-controlled territory in Syria. Doe is resisting, and now the long-awaited hearing on the legal merits–scheduled to occur on June 20–has been replaced by a hearing on this release question. And what will (or at least should) be argued then? Steve and Bobby explore two distinct questions: First, does some version of the Valentine rule forbid involuntary cross-border transfers that are not custodial on the back end (and even if so, should that be the rule with respect to releasing captives from a war zone)? Second, is there a rule requiring that the release meet some threshold of safety and, if so, is that rule satisfied here?
  2. Boumediene’s 10th anniversary: A decade ago, the Supreme Court decided Boumediene v. Bush. Viewed as a landmark at the time, what has its legacy turned out to be?
  3. SCOTUS watch: Still no Carpenter, Dalmazzi, or travel-ban decisions.
  4. The investigation and arrest of James Wolfe: The former head of security for the Senate intelligence committee is under arrest for lying to the FBI about his relationship with reporters, with a real threat of further charges for mishandling classified information. The underlying investigation, meanwhile, included acquisition of a reporter’s communications metadata. All of which provides an excellent occasion to review and discuss Justice Department’s guidelines governing such journalist-related investigations.
  5. Trumplandia Road Show: We could hardly ignore this, could we? The Trump-KJU summit produced some significant American concessions regarding security guarantees for the DPRK and a promise to end U.S.-South Korea joint military exercises. But it did not (yet) produce a reduction of sanctions. We explore the authority of the president to do these things, emphasizing the limits on his control over sanctions in this particular setting.

All that pushed us well past the 1-hour mark, so after promising some frivolity involving Steve’s favorite SCOTUS decision of all time, we end up pushing that topic off till next time. Till then…

Robert (Bobby) Chesney is the Dean of the University of Texas School of Law, where he also holds the James A. Baker III Chair in the Rule of Law and World Affairs at UT. He is known internationally for his scholarship relating both to cybersecurity and national security. He is a co-founder of Lawfare, the nation’s leading online source for analysis of national security legal issues, and he co-hosts the popular show The National Security Law Podcast.
Steve Vladeck is a professor of law at the University of Texas School of Law. A 2004 graduate of Yale Law School, Steve clerked for Judge Marsha Berzon on the Ninth Circuit and Judge Rosemary Barkett on the Eleventh Circuit. In addition to serving as a senior editor of the Journal of National Security Law & Policy, Steve is also the co-editor of Aspen Publishers’ leading National Security Law and Counterterrorism Law casebooks.

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