Kenneth Anderson, Lawfare

Kenneth Anderson


Washington, DC, United States

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Past articles by Kenneth:

A Primer on Debates over Law and Ethics of Autonomous Weapon Systems

A short primer on arguments over the law and ethics of autonomous weapon systems, appearing in The Oxford Handbook of Law, Regulation, and Technology, just out from Oxford University Press (July 2017). → Read More

French Special Forces Targeting French Citizens Fighting for ISIS in Iraq

Using location coordinates and other intelligence supplied by French special forces to hunt down high-value French targets, Iraqi artillery and ground troops have killed French nationals fighting for ISIS during the battle to drive the extremist group from Mosul, Iraq. → Read More

A Reform Proposal for Global Refugee Policies

A Brief Review of Refuge: Rethinking Refugee Policy in a Changing World, by Paul Collier and Alexander Betts (Oxford UP, forthcoming September 2017) → Read More

How To Declare War (Anno Domini 1429; 2017 Update)

Wherein Joan of Arc, the Maid of Orleans, sends a formal letter of summons to the English upon the siege of Orleans. → Read More

A Readings Post on Syria Extracted From The Onion

This special Readings post on the conflict in Syria comes from The Onion. → Read More

The Bathtub Fallacy and Risks of Terrorism

Bloomberg economics commentator Justin Fox explains in a recent column why comparing the odds of getting killed in a terrorist attack and slipping and fatally falling in the bathtub is a fundamental misuse of statistics. → Read More

Corporate Liability Under the Alien Tort Statute Returns to Supreme Court in Jesner v. Arab Bank

The Supreme Court punted on the question of corporate liability under the Alien Tort Statute in its 2013 Kiobel decision; corporate liability is once again the explicit question in a case accepted by the Court on April 3, 2017, Jesner v. Arab Bank, No. 16-499. → Read More

What Is the Extent of Self-Defense by a State?

Emory University's Laurie Blank discusses the meaning of the right of a state to use force against terrorist groups and violent extremists, in a forthcoming article in the Israel Yearbook of Human Rights, now posted to SSRN, and in a short column in the Jurist → Read More

Alan Z. Rozenshtein on Digital Communications and Data Storage Companies as "Surveillance Intermediaries"

Alan Z. Rozenshtein, a former contributor to Lawfare who now works at DOJ, has a new article forthcoming in Stanford Law Review, "Surveillance Intermediaries," analyzing the role of corporate actors such as Apple, Google, Facebook, and others, that dominate digital communications and data storage, situated between government and targets of surveillance. → Read More

Adam Pearlman on the Guantanamo Quagmire

Adam Pearlman is a lawyer with the Department of Defense who, in his private capacity, has a new article posted to SSRN titled "GQ: The Guantanamo Quagmire" (27 Stanford Law and Public Policy Review 101 (2016)). The article considers why, so many years on, the Guantanamo detentions continue to be such a point of legal and moral controversy. Pearlman's article is particularly useful (especially… → Read More

A Dissertation on the Strategic Logic of Military Coups

In light of the coup attempt in Turkey (still apparently underway at this writing), I want to note a fairly recent book on coup d'etats from a political science perspective - Naunihal Singh's Seizing Power: The Strategic Logic of Military Coups (Johns Hopkins Press 2014). Singh is a professor at the Air War College in Alabama, and this volume appears to be a published version of his… → Read More

Eric Talbot Jensen on Presidential Pronouncements of Customary International Law

BYU law professor Eric Talbot Jensen has a new article posted to SSRN (appearing in Brigham Young University Law Review) titled, "Presidential Pronouncements of Customary International Law as an Alternative to the Senate's Advice and Consent." Very interesting and well worth reading. Abstract (31 pp. pdf): > The Restatement (Fourth) of Foreign Relations Law of the United States has thus far… → Read More

Text of Russia-China Joint Declaration on Promotion and Principles of International Law

Last week I noted that the foreign ministries of Russia and China announced plans to issue a joint statement on the "promotion of international law" during the June 25, 2016 visit of President Vladimir Putin to China. The statement has now been posted to the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs website. The joint statement is not long and overall appears to reaffirm long-held views of both… → Read More

Manzanar in California's Owens Valley on Independence Day

Happy Independence Day to Americans everywhere! My wife and I are on vacation in the Eastern Sierra Nevada mountains of California, a part of it called the Owens Valley (which, His Serenity notes in passing, is God’s Own Country). We watched fireworks last night put on by the Paiute-Shoshone Indian Reservation in the town of Bishop, sponsored by the tribe’s Indian veterans post (which has a… → Read More

The Centenary of the Battle of the Somme

Americans (myself included) have not tended to be attentive to the Great War. Our attention is focused on World War II, and we think of the Great War as "World War I" - and the "First" merely as wind-up to the "Second." It took me a long time to understand intellectually that the 20th century (and the 21st as well, to judge by current events in the Middle East) takes place in the shadow of the… → Read More

Military Drones: Evolutionary, Not Transformative, Not Revolutionary

Over the past decade, military drones, whether weaponized or merely equipped for surveillance, have been at the center of many heated arguments, whether about targeted killing, counterterrorism, the supposedly "too easy" resort to force through drones, and a host of other controversies. Philosophers, anthropologists, and other academics have given us social theories of the drone. Some military… → Read More

An American (Diplomat Not) in Paris

As I write this review, the airwaves are abuzz (let’s amend that: Twitter is abuzz) with reports that the Democrats’ “oppo file” on Donald Trump has been hacked by Russians or someone-or-other and will be imminently released to great consternation and gnashing of teeth. And, separately, Wikileaks has announced that it will release some apparent trove of damning documents on Hillary Clinton and… → Read More

Strategic Effects of Proliferating Military UAVs in the Asia Pacific Region

Although drone warfare to date has overwhelmingly been analyzed in the context of US operations against non-state actors - Al Qaeda or affiliated groups or, more recently, ISIS - much of the impact of drones on warfare is likely to come in the markedly different environment of state-to-state conflict (or near conflict) in the Asia Pacific ocean. The conflict environment, not to put too fine a… → Read More

Russia and China to Sign Joint Declaration on Principles of International Law

According to a statement issued today by the Russian Foreign Ministry (thanks to the OUP International Law Blog for flagging it), during the upcoming June 25, 2016 state visit of the Russian president to China, the "foreign ministers of both countries are planning to sign a declaration on increasing the role of international law." It will (according to Tass' report) set out a > common approach… → Read More

Perennial Issues in the International Law of the Use of Force

The Oxford Handbook of the Use of Force in International Law (edited by the highly distinguished Cambridge University international law scholar Marc Weller) labors under two handicaps before ever reaching the book's content. First, at over $200 in hardback on Amazon, only readers with easy access to a decent law library will be able even to lay eyes on the volume (and the Kindle edition is… → Read More