March 2, 2007
Harvard Law School
Presented with Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP
The Harvard International Law Journal held its 2007 Symposium, Striking First: Legal Perspectives on Preemptive Action on Friday March 2, 2007. The Symposium addressed jus ad bellum and preemptive war by adopting a practical and current events-focused look at the state of the law. The panels addressed real problems and realistic hypotheticals, with a goal of producing a useful set of legal considerations and conclusions about the state of international law regarding some of the most pressing international security questions currently facing the U.S. government. By looking at the past, the present, and the future, the Symposium provided both a day of interesting discussion and a valuable contribution to current affairs legal debates.
Panel 1 addressed preemptive strikes against Iran and North Korea. The jus ad bellum issues regarding both countries are often conflated. Both countries are pursuing dangerous nuclear weapons programs that could provoke a U.S. response. While there are many legal similarities between the two scenarios, there are important differences as well.
Panel 2 addressed preemptive strikes against non-state actors without the approval of the sovereign nation in which the non-state actors are located.
1:00 – 3:00pm – Preemptive Action with Respect to Iran and North Korea
Ashton Carter, Kennedy School of Government (moderator)
Todd Buchwald, U.S. Department of State
Mitchell Reese, William and Mary School of Law
Ray Takeyh, Council of Foreign Relations
3:00 – 3:30pm – Coffee Break
3:30 – 5:30pm – Preemptive Action and Counter-Terrorism
Antonia Chayes, Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy (moderator)
Gabriella Blum, Harvard Law School
Michael J. Glennon, Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy
Thomas Keaney, Johns Hopkins Univ., Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced Int’l Studies
Mark Weisburd, University of North Carolina School of Law
5:30pm – Cocktails and Hors D’Oeuvres
Gabriella Blum is a visiting Assistant Professor at Harvard Law School, where she is teaching International Law and International Negotiation. Her research interests include Conflict Management, Counter-Terrorism, Operations, Laws of Armed Conflict, Negotiation, and Public International Law. She received her B.A. in Economics from Tel-Aviv University in 1996. She also holds LL.M (2001) and S.J.D. (2003) degrees from Harvard Law School. Her S.J.D. dissertation was entitled “Between War and Peace: Managing International and Intrastate Armed Conflicts.”
Todd Buchwald is the Assistant Legal Adviser for United Nations Affairs for the U.S. Department of State, having served in that position since 2004, and having previously served as the State Department’s Assistant Legal Adviser for Political-Military Affairs (1995-2004), and for European Affairs (1991-1995). Before joining the State Department, he was an associate at Wilmer, Cutler & Pickering in Washington, D.C. Mr. Buchwald is a graduate of Cornell University and the Yale Law School.
Ashton Carter served from 1993 to 1996 as Assistant Secretary of Defense for International Security Policy where he was responsible for national security policy on arms control in the states of the former Soviet Union, for countering weapons of mass destruction worldwide and for overseeing the U.S. nuclear arsenal and missile defense programs. He was twice awarded the Department of Defense’s Distinguished Service Medal, the highest award given by the Pentagon. For his contributions to intelligence, he was awarded the Defense Intelligence Medal. Before his government service, Carter was Director of the Center for Science and International Affairs at the Kennedy School. He received bachelor’s degrees in physics and medieval history from Yale University and a doctorate in theoretical physics from Oxford University, where he was a Rhodes Scholar. He has authored numerous scientific articles, government studies, and books.
Antonia Chayes, now at The Fletcher School, has taught at the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard, and the Harvard Law School. She chairs the Project on International Institutions and Conflict Management at the Program on Negotiation at the Harvard Law School. Chayes was Vice Chair and Senior Consultant of Conflict Management Group (CMG), a non-profit international dispute resolution organization. She occasionally serves as mediator of corporate disputes for JAMS/ENDISPUTE, where she served for eight years. As a Board member of United Technologies Corporation for 21 years, she chaired its Public Issues Review Committee, and served on its Executive Committee until retiring in 2002. During the Carter Administration she was Assistant and later, Under Secretary of the US Air Force, where she was awarded the Distinguished Service Medal. She has served on several Federal Commissions, including the Vice President’s White House Aviation Safety and Security Commission, and the Commission on Roles and Missions of the United States Armed Forces. Chayes has also practiced law in a Boston law firm. She is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. She serves as a consultant to the Office of Compliance, Adviser, Ombudsman of IFC and MIGA of the World Bank. She is the author of a number of books and articles. She was recently honored with the Radcliffe Alumnae Award in recognition of her career of distinguished service. She received her B.A. from Radcliffe College of Harvard University, attended Yale Law School, and received the J.D. from George Washington University. She is the mother of five, grandmother of nine, and widow of the late Abram Chayes.
Michael J. Glennon is professor of international law at the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. Prior to going into teaching, he was Legal Counsel to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee (1977-1980) and Assistant Counsel in the Office of the Legislative Counsel of the United States Senate (1973-1977). In 1998 he taught international and constitutional law in Lithuania on a Fulbright fellowship. During the 2001-2002 academic year he was a Fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, DC. Professor Glennon has served as a consultant to various congressional committees, the U.S. State Department, and the International Atomic Energy Agency. He is the recipient of the Deak Prize and Certificate of Merit from the American Society of International Law. From 1986 to 1999 he was a member of the Board of Editors of the American Journal of International Law. He is a member of the American Law Institute and the Council on Foreign Relations. He served as a consultant to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, the Senate Judiciary Committee, the U.S. State Department, and the International Atomic Energy Agency. He has advised several foreign governments and testified before the World Court and various congressional committees. A frequent commentator on public affairs, he has spoken widely within the United States and overseas, and appeared on Nightline, The Today Show, CSPAN’s Washington Journal, NPR’s All Things Considered and other national news shows.
Thomas A. Keaney is the executive director of the Foreign Policy Institute and senior adjunct professor of strategic studies at the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies, Johns Hopkins University, Washington DC. Until 1998 he was a professor of military strategy at National War College, Washington DC, and director of its core courses on military thought and strategy. During 1991 and 1992 he was a researcher/author with the Gulf War Air Power Survey. He was co-author of two reports of that survey: The Summary Report and The Effects and Effectiveness of Air Power (both published by the U.S. Government Printing Office in 1993). He is also author of Strategic Bombers and Conventional Weapons: Air Power Options (National Defense University Press, 1983). His most recent publication (with Eliot A. Cohen) is Revolution in Warfare?: Air Power in the Persian Gulf (Naval Institute Press, 1995). He is a graduate of the National War College. He holds a B.S. from the U.S. Air Force Academy and M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in history from the University of Michigan. During a career in the U.S. Air Force, he served in positions including: associate professor of history at the U.S. Air Force Academy; planner on the Air Staff; forward air controller in Vietnam; and B-52 squadron commander. He retired as a colonel in 1991.
Mitchell B. Reiss was nominated by the President to the position of Special Envoy of the President and the Secretary of State for the Northern Ireland Peace Process on March 16, 2004 and was accorded the rank of ambassador on May 25, 2004. In January 2005, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice asked Ambassador Reiss to continue serving in this capacity. Ambassador Reiss is concurrently Vice Provost for International Affairs at the College of William & Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia. From 2003-2005, he served as Director of the Office of Policy Planning at the U.S. State Department, where he provided Secretary Colin L. Powell with independent strategic advice and recommendations on American foreign policy. From 1999 to 2003, Ambassador Reiss was Dean of International Affairs and Director of the Wendy and Emery Reves Center for International Studies at William & Mary; he also held appointments at the Marshall-Wythe School of Law and in the Department of Government. Prior to coming to William & Mary, Ambassador Reiss helped managed the start-up and operations of the Korean Peninsula Energy Development Organization (KEDO), a multinational organization designed to end North Korea’s nuclear weapons program; he was also KEDO’s chief negotiator with the North Koreans. Ambassador Reiss was a Guest Scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, DC, where he started their nonproliferation and counterproliferation programs. He practiced corporate and banking law for three years at Covington & Burling and was Special Assistant to the National Security Advisor as a White House Fellow in 1988-89. He has served as a consultant to the Office of the Legal Advisor at the State Department, the General Counsel’s Office at the U.S. Arms Control and Disarmament Agency and the Los Alamos and Livermore National Laboratories. Ambassador Reiss has a law degree from Columbia Law School, a D.Phil. from Oxford University, a Masters degree from the Fletcher School of Law & Diplomacy, and a B.A. from Williams College.
Ray Takeyh is a senior fellow for Middle East studies at the Council on Foreign Relations. His areas of specialization are Iran, political reform in the Middle East, and Islamist movements and parties. He is also a contributing editor of the National Interest. Dr. Takeyh was previously professor of national security studies at the National War College; professor and director of studies at the Near East and South Asia Center, National Defense University; fellow in international security studies at Yale University; fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy; and fellow at the Center for Middle Eastern Studies, University of California, Berkeley. Dr. Takeyh earned a doctorate in modern history from Oxford University in 1997.
A. Mark Weisburd has been a distinguished Professor of Law at the University of North Carolina School of Law since 1981. He received his A.B. from Princeton in 1970 and his J.D. from the University of Michigan in 1976. Weisburd, a native Arkansan, joined the Foreign Service after earning his undergraduate degree, and he served in East Pakistan/Bangladesh from 1971 to 1973. He resigned in 1973 to enter law school at Michigan, where he was a notes editor on the Michigan Law Review. From 1976 to 1981, he was an associate with the Washington, D.C., law firm of Wilmer, Cutler & Pickering, his practice ranging from participation in the legal advisory team of the Constitutional Convention of the Northern Mariana Islands to pro bono first amendment work to defendants’ securities and antitrust litigation. He teaches civil procedure, international law and a course on international human rights. He writes mainly in the area of international law.