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The Case for Congress: Separation of Powers and the War on Terror examines the constitutional relationship between Congress and the President in the post-September 11 world, arguing that Congress should exercise its legitimate authority in guiding United States policy. While many commentators have focused on the extent of the President's national security and foreign affairs authority, both domestically and abroad, this title focuses on the constitutional authority of Congress to serve as a check on executive power. As a national consensus has developed around the notion that the Bush administration made grave errors in its policy decisions, a reminder of the leading role that Congress can play in those decisions is particularly appropriate. Unlike scholarly work devoted either to detailing or criticizing the Bush administration's policy decisions, this accessible and balanced book focuses on the policies themselves, and on the way in which Congress can influence those policies for the better. The authors further offer specific and useful recommendations for legislative measures that may correct existing policy deficiencies and promote sounder decision-making in the area of national security and foreign affairs.
Excessive government secrecy in the name of counterterrorism has had a corrosive effect on democracy and the rule of law. In the United States, when controversial national security programs were run by the Bush and Obama administrations - including in areas of targeted killings, torture, extraordinary rendition, and surveillance - excessive secrecy often prevented discovery of those actions. Both administrations insisted they acted legally, but often refused to explain how they interpreted the governing law to justify their actions. They also fought to keep Congress from exercising oversight, to keep courts from questioning the legality of these programs, and to keep the public in the dark. Similar patterns have arisen in other democracies around the world. In National Security Secrecy, Sudha Setty takes a critical and comparative look at these problems and demonstrates how government transparency, privacy, and accountability should provide the basis for reform.
ÔThis is an important collection of scholarly essays that will illuminate positive legal developments and normative constitutionalist concerns in the expanding arena of secret government decisions. This book is indispensable reading for those concerned with constitutionalism, the rule of law and democracy as they bear on the tensions between secrecy and disclosure in government responses to terrorism.Õ Ð Vicki C. Jackson, Harvard University Law School, US ÔThis book contains the broadest and deepest analysis of the legal and policy issues that relate to secrecy and national security on one hand, and the imperatives of a functioning democracy on the other. The broadest because it brings to bear materials from many countries, the deepest because it brilliantly explores a core problem of constitutional government.Õ Ð Norman Dorsen, New York University, US and President, American Civil Liberties Union, 1976Ð1991 Virtually every nation has had to confront tensions between the rule-of-law demands for transparency and accountability and the need for confidentiality with respect to terrorism and national security. This book provides a global and comparative overview of the implications of governmental secrecy in a variety of contexts. Expert contributors from around the world discuss the dilemmas posed by the necessity for Ð and evils of Ð secrecy, and assess constitutional mechanisms for checking the abuse of secrecy by national and international institutions in the field of counter-terrorism. In recent years, nations have relied on secret evidence to detain suspected terrorists and freeze their assets, have barred lawsuits alleging human rights violations by invoking Ôstate secretsÕ, and have implemented secret surveillance and targeted killing programs. The book begins by addressing the issue of secrecy at the institutional level, examining the role of courts and legislatures in regulating the use of secrecy claims by the executive branch of government. From there, the focus shifts to the three most vital areas of anti-terrorism law: preventive detention, criminal trials and administrative measures (notably, targeted economic sanctions). The contributors explore how assertions of secrecy and national security in each of these areas affect the functioning of the legal system and the application of procedural justice and fairness. Students, professors and researchers interested in constitutional law, international law, comparative law and issues of terrorism and security will find this an invaluable addition to the literature. Judges, lawyers and policymakers will also find much of use in this critical volume.
The events of September 11 and subsequent American actions irrevocably changed the political, military, and legal landscapes of U.S. national security. Predictably, many of the changes were controversial, and abuses were revealed. The United States needs a legal framework that reflects these new realities. Legislating the War on Terror presents an agenda for reforming the statutory law governing this new battle, balancing the need for security, the rule of law, and the constitutional rights that protect American freedom. The authors span a considerable swath of the political spectrum, but they all believe that Congress has a significant role to play in shaping the contours of America's confrontation with terrorism. Their essays are organized around the major tools that the United States has deployed against al Qaeda as well as the legal problems that have arisen as a result. • Mark Gitenstein compares U.S. and foreign legal standards for detention, interrogation, and surveillance. • Matthew Waxman studies possible strategic purposes for detaining people without charging them, while Jack Goldsmith imagines a system of judicially reviewed law-of-war detention. • Robert Chesney suggests ways to refine U.S. criminal law into a more powerful instrument against terrorism. • Robert Litt and Wells C. Bennett suggest the creation of a specialized bar of defense lawyers for trying accused terrorists in criminal courts. • David Martin explores the relationship between immigration law and counterterrorism. • David Kris lays out his proposals for modernizing the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. • Justin Florence and Matthew Gerke outline possible reforms of civil justice procedures in national security litigation. • Benjamin Wittes and Stuart Taylor Jr. investigate ways to improve interrogation laws while clarifying the definition and limits of torture. • Kenneth Anderson argues for the protection of targeted killing as a counterterrorism tool. How should Congress authorize, regulate, and limit counterterrorism tools, and under what circumstances should it permit and encourage their use? The authors of this book share a commitment to pushing a reluctant Congress to play a more active role than it has to date in writing the rules of the road.

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