Georgia Law alum co-authors commentary on US surveillance law

Gary Ashcroft, who earned his J.D. degree cum laude from the University of Georgia School of Law just last year, has co-authored “Why Electronic Surveillance Reform is Necessary,” a commentary at Lawfare, a leading national security blog.

The post, which is drawn from a longer version here, argues for reform of the FISA (Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act) Amendments Act of 2008, commonly known as Section 702, and relied upon by the country’s intelligence community, or “IC.” It concludes:

“Section 702 is a valuable intelligence tool that exhibits some significant deficiencies in its protections for U.S. persons in a law enforcement context and for U.S. competitive interests abroad. Policymakers should craft reforms that guard against the misuse of Section 702 by law enforcement and redefine the relationship between the IC and tech companies. As they do so, policymakers can ensure that Section 702 continues to fulfill its vital national security functions while also respecting the civil liberties and corporate interests of U.S. persons and companies. “

Ashcroft (above left) is a Fellow for National Security at Third Way, a centrist thinktank in Washington, D.C. While a law student, he served as Research Assistant to Professor Harlan G. Cohen, served as Director of Legislative Research for State Rep. Spencer Frye, interned at the ACLU of Georgia, and was a Google Policy Fellow, working on cyber issues, at D.C.’s American Enterprise Institute. Ashcroft wrote the Lawfare commentary with Mieke Eoyang, Vice President for Third Way’s National Security Program.

International courts studied in new volume co-edited by Professor Cohen

Harlan Grant Cohen, the Gabriel M. Wilner/UGA Foundation Professor in International Law here at the University of Georgia School of Law, has just posted at SSRN “Introduction: Legitimacy and the Courts”, the opening segment of a forthcoming  Cambridge University Press volume. Institutions treated in subsequent chapters include the International Court of Justice, the World Trade Organization, the International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes, and the European Court of Human Rights.

Cohen co-edited the forthcoming essay collection, entitled Legitimacy and International Courts, with Baltimore Law Professor Nienke Grossman, Deputy Director of her law school’s Center for International and Comparative Law, and two Oslo Law professors who co-direct that university’s PluriCourts project, Andreas Føllesdal and Geir Ulfstein.

The “Introduction” manuscript, which forms part of our Dean Rusk International Law Center Research Paper Series at SSRN, may be downloaded here.

Here’s the abstract:

Legitimacy and International Courts examines the underpinnings of legitimacy, or the justification of the authority, of international courts and tribunals. It brings together an esteemed group of authors, noted for both their expertise in individual courts, tribunals, or other adjudicatory bodies, and their work on legitimacy, effectiveness, and governance more broadly, to consider the legitimacy of international courts from a comparative perspective. Authors explore what strengthens and weakens the legitimacy of various different international courts, while also considering broader theories of international court legitimacy. Some chapters highlight the sociological or normative legitimacy of specific courts or tribunals, while others address cross-cutting issues such as representation, democracy, independence and effectiveness.

This Introduction surveys some of the key contributions of this volume and distills some of the lessons of its varied chapters for the legitimacy of international courts. Parts II and III are largely conceptual in approach, exploring what legitimacy means for each and all of the courts. Part IV takes a more functional approach, exploring how various factors internal or external to particular courts have contributed to those courts’ normative or sociological legitimacy. Part V provides thumbnail summaries of each the chapters that follow.

“Highly recommended”: Professor Chapman on “Due Process Abroad”

Due Process Abroad is the title of the timely manuscript that Nathan S. Chapman (right), an Assistant Professor here at the University of Georgia School of Law, has just posted at SSRN. At the influential Legal Theory Blog, Georgetown Law Professor Lawrence Solum has given his “highly recommended” recognition to this study of the extraterritorial application of the Due Process Clause of the U.S. Constitution.

The manuscript, which forms part of our Dean Rusk International Law Center Research Paper Series at SSRN, may be downloaded here.

Here’s the abstract:

Defining the scope of the Constitution’s application outside U.S. territory is more important than ever. This month the Supreme Court will hear oral argument about whether the Constitution applies when a U.S. officer shoots a Mexican child across the border. Meanwhile the federal courts are scrambling to evaluate the constitutionality of an Executive Order that, among other things, deprives immigrants of their right to reenter the United States. Yet the extraterritorial reach of the Due Process Clause — the broadest constitutional limit on the government’s authority to deprive persons of “life, liberty, and property” — remains obscure.

Up to now, scholars have uniformly concluded that the founding generation did not understand due process to apply abroad, at least not to aliens. This Article challenges that consensus. Based on the English historical background, constitutional structure, and the early practice of federal law enforcement on the high seas, this Article argues that the founding generation understood due process to apply to any exercise of federal law enforcement, criminal or civil, against any person, anywhere in the world. Outside the context of war, no one believed that a federal officer could deprive a suspect of life, liberty, or property without due process of law — even if the capture occurred abroad or the suspect was a non-citizen.

This history has important implications. It strongly supports the extension of due process to federal criminal and civil law enforcement, regardless the suspect’s location or citizenship. This principle has immediate implications for cross-border shootings, officially sponsored kidnappings and detentions abroad, the suspension of immigration benefits, and the acquisition of foreign evidence for criminal defendants.

Georgia Law alumnus, Professor Javier Dondé, returns as Visiting Scholar

We at the Dean Rusk International Law Center are delighted this week to host a distinguished Visiting Scholar: University of Georgia School of Law alumnus, Dr. Javier Dondé Matute.

He earned his LL.M. degree from Georgia Law in 1998, and is now a Professor of International Criminal Law at Instituto Nacionale de Ciencias Penales (National Institute of Criminal Sciences – INACIPE, for short) in Mexico City, Mexico.

He’ll be resident at our Center all week, pursuing his sabbatical research on the post-World War II trials at Nuremberg. Additionally, he’ll present a work in progress, entitled “Criminal Responsibility as a Founding Principle of International Criminal Law,” this Wednesday, March 15, as part of our International Law Colloquium Series led by Georgia Law Professor Harlan G. Cohen.

Professor Dondé has written and published widely on issues such as international criminal law, comparative criminal law, human rights, and extradition; his books include Derecho penal internacional (Oxford University Press 2008). He also has served as an adviser to Mexico’s Supreme Court and to various other judicial, prosecutorial, law enforcement, and human rights agencies. He is a member of the editorial boards of two leading Latin American law reviews, the Revista Iberoamericana de Derechos Humanos and the Anuario Mexicano de Derecho Internacional.

In addition to his Georgia Law LL.M., Professor Dondé holds a Ph.D. in international and comparative criminal law from the University of Aberdeen, Scotland, and completed his undergraduate studies at Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de México (ITAM).

¡Bienvenidos!

Polish law students & practitioners invited to free webinar this Monday on LL.M. study at Georgia Law

Law students and lawyers in Poland are invited to take part in a free webinar regarding postgraduate study at the University of Georgia School of Law. It’s set for 16:00 CET on Monday, March 13, and will focus on our Master of Laws (LL.M.) degree, a one-year offering for foreign-trained lawyers.

As detailed in this Education USA Poland Facebook post, our partner in this outreach effort, the free webinar will be hosted by Laura Tate Kagel, our Center’s Director of International Professional Education. This outreach follows on Dr. Kagel’s visit to Warsaw  last April.

Details on how to join the webinar here. Details about Georgia Law’s LL.M. degree here.

“Vietnam/War/Memory/Justice: A Conversation with Viet Thanh Nguyen,” a very special February 14 event

nguyenGeorgia Law’s Dean Rusk International Law Center is honored to host a roundtable on the legacies of the U.S.-Vietnam War as part of next week’s visit to Athens by Viet Thanh Nguyen, a University of Southern California professor whose first novel, The Sympathizer, won the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction.

nothingEntitled “Vietnam/War/Memory/Justice: A Conversation with Viet Thanh Nguyen,” the roundtable will take place from 4 to 5:30 p.m. this Tuesday, February 14, in the Larry Walker Room on the 4th floor of the law school’s Dean Rusk Hall.

The topic of Tuesday’s roundtable is drawn from Nguyen’s 2016 work, Nothing Ever Dies: Vietnam and the Memory of War, which itself was nominated for the 2016 National Book Award for Nonfiction. (Nguyen’s newest book, a short-story collection titled The Refugees, was published yesterday.) In Nothing Ever Dies, Nguyen writes:

“Memory, like war, is often asymmetrical.”

The same may be said of justice; in particular, of efforts to right the wrongs done during armed conflict and similar extreme violence. These issues of transitional justice, memory, and war will be explored in the roundtable, at which Nguyen will be joined by:

tiana-mTiana S. Mykkeltvedt, Georgia Law alumna, member of the Dean Rusk International Law Center Council, and partner at the Atlanta law firm Bondurant Mixson & Elmore, who was flown out of Vietnam as an orphan in April 1975 in what came to be known as Operation Babylift; and

amannDiane Marie Amann, Associate Dean for International Programs & Strategic Initiatives and Emily & Ernest Woodruff Chair in International Law at Georgia Law, who also serves as the International Criminal Court Prosecutor’s Special Adviser on Children in & affected by Armed Conflict.

Roundtable space is limited, and registration, available here, is recommended. For more information, contact ruskintlaw@uga.edu.

Our Center is especially pleased to sponsor this event, given that our namesake, the late Dean Rusk, a Georgia Law professor, and served as U.S. Secretary of State during the first years of the Vietnam War. The Georgia Asian Pacific American Bar Association, the Vietnamese American Bar Association of Georgia, and Georgia Law’s Asian Law Students Association are cosponsoring the roundtable. It will be the last in a series of Global Georgia events hosted by other university units, most notably the Department of Comparative Literature and the Willson Center for Humanities and Arts:

► 4 p.m. Monday, February 13, in the university Chapel, Nguyen will deliver the 3d Annual Betty Jean Craige Lecture of the Department of Comparative Literature, entitled “Nothing Ever Dies: Ethical Memory and Radical Writing in The Sympathizer.” For information, contact Professor Peter D. O’Neill at pon@uga.edu.

► 6-7 p.m. Sunday, February 12, at Avid Bookshop, 493 Prince Avenue in downtown Athens, a book-signing of The Refugees.

U.S. immigration law subject of timely article by Professor Jason A. Cade

cade_profileAn especially timely account of U.S. immigration law has just been published by Georgia Law’s expert on the subject, Professor Jason A. Cade.

Entitled “Judging Immigration Equity: Deportation and Proportionality in the Supreme Court,” the article  examines the Supreme Court’s deportation and immigration enforcement jurisprudence over the last 15 years, arguing that the Court’s decisions have been increasingly animated by a proportionality norm.

Here’s the abstract:

Though it has not directly said so, the United States Supreme Court cares about proportionality in the deportation system. Or at least it thinks someone in the system should be considering the justifiability of removal decisions. As this Article demonstrates, the Court’s jurisprudence across a range of substantive and procedural challenges over the last fifteen years increases or preserves structural opportunities for equitable balancing at multiple levels in the deportation process. Notably, the Court has endorsed decision makers’ consideration of the normative justifiability of deportation even where noncitizens have a criminal history or lack a formal path to lawful status. This proportionality-based lens helps unify the Court’s seemingly disparate decisions regulating the immigration enforcement system in recent years. It also has implications for deferred action enforcement programs such as the DACA program implemented by President Obama in 2012. The Court’s general gravitation toward proportionality analysis in this field is sound. Nevertheless, there are drawbacks to the Court’s approach, and the cases are probably best seen as signals to the political branches that the deportation system remains in dire need of wide-ranging reform.

The article, which appears at 50 UC Davis Law Review 1029 (2017), is available here.