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  • Unknown
  • Lawfare
  • CFR

Past articles by Matthew:

The Law of Armed Conflict in 2040? A New Volume

I am pleased to announce Oxford University Press’s publication of “The Future Law of Armed Conflict,” a volume I co-edited with my former student and member of West Point’s law department, Tom Oakley. → Read More

U.S. State Department Picks Apart PRC’s South China Sea Customary Law Claim

A recent State Department legal analysis highlights the unique roles that the United States plays in interpreting and enforcing maritime law in the South China Sea. This legal diplomacy also illustrates methodological challenges of customary international law. → Read More

Filling Gaps in International Law

We recently contributed to an essay in the 2020 "Strategic Survey" that discusses key international legal gaps in areas relating to international security and suggests how states can work to address them. → Read More

Cyberattacks and the Constitution

The United States has one of the world’s strongest and most sophisticated capabilities to launch cyberattacks against adversaries. How does the US Constitution allocate power to use that capability? And what does that allocation tell us about appropriate executive-legislative branch arrangements for setting and implementing cyber strategy? → Read More

Avoiding Post-Election Chaos: Wilson vs. Hughes, 1916

President Trump’s recent refusals to commit to a peaceful transfer of power have called to mind historical contrasts. → Read More

Constitutional War Powers: A “Casebook Chapter”

Professor Stephen Griffin (of Tulane) and I have posted to SSRN what we’re calling our free “model casebook chapter” on constitutional war powers. → Read More

Eisenhower and War Powers

Eisenhower never initiated a major armed conflict. Still, his administration offers critical insight for modern war powers questions. → Read More

National Security Law Lectures

Lawfare’s Bobby Chesney and Matt Waxman have launched “The National Security Law Lectures”: a free series of lectures on an array of national security law topics. → Read More

The Mexican-American War and Constitutional War Powers

The outcome of the war—and the means necessary to achieve it—led to the war’s most noteworthy constitutional precedents. → Read More


Did Soleimani Pose an Imminent Threat?

CFR's Matthew Waxman says the Trump administration is making a mistake in providing vague and shifting legal rationales for the killing of an Iranian general. → Read More

A Roundtable on War Powers Reform

A new set of essays explores the state and possible trajectory of modern war powers. → Read More

Daniel Webster, War Powers and Bird$h*t

A story about very expensive bird$h*t, or guano, and how one of the 19th century’s most important thinkers on war powers nearly stumbled the nation, figuratively speaking, into a giant pile of it. → Read More

Trump, Congress and Presidential Alliance Powers

In a new Washington Quarterly article, the authors argue that the post-World War II expansion of the presidential alliance powers enables President Trump to weaken alliances from within. → Read More

Remembering the Bay of Pigs: Law and Covert War

A 1962 Justice Department memo offers a rare glimpse of the legal rationale for covert warfare. → Read More

Remembering Eisenhower’s Middle East Force Resolution

In 1957, Congress granted President Eisenhower authorization to use force in the Middle East. The law is still on the books 62 years later. → Read More

Remembering Eisenhower’s Formosa AUMF

Eisenhower believed that a congressional authorization of force, including the possible use of nuclear weapons, to protect Taiwan from Communist China would help prevent all-out war from breaking out across the Taiwan Strait. → Read More

Remembering the Ludlow Amendment

Jan. 10 marks 81 years since Congress defeated a proposed constitutional amendment to add a referendum requirement to the war declaration power. → Read More

The Anniversary of the Monroe Doctrine

The Monroe Doctrine is a momentous example of the president’s vast constitutional power to set and communicate U.S. foreign policy—to include threatening war. → Read More

Presidents and War Powers

A review of Michael Beschloss, “Presidents of War” (Crown Books, 2018). → Read More

When Did World War I End?

Today is the centennial Armistice Day, remembered as the day the Great War ended, but as a matter of U.S. domestic law, it dragged on for another three years. → Read More