At this earlier post Whitney Wilson says It would be great if Andrew had the time to post some of the details of the discussion, which I’m sure many EphBlog readers (including me) would find very interesting.

Indeed Andrew Wang ’08 has and his follow up may be read here and on the previous post.

Andrew Wang ’08 says:
Just wanted to fill you all in on some of the details of the talk I attended with Jaffer. The discussion focused on the degree to which the Obama administration has continued the national security policies of the Bush administration, and more specifically whether the practice of targeted killings via Predator drones in places like Pakistan or Yemen is legal under the Constitution or the laws of war.

One of the major disputes between Jaffer and the other panelist (a former major DOJ attorney who defended the Bush policies) was whether the “full incidents of the laws of war” attach to the “War on Terror.” The other panelist was of the opinion that virtually all of the incidents of war that apply to traditional wars (e.g. detention of enemy combatants for the full duration of the war, the power to kill enemy combatants without prior judicial approval, etc.) apply here as well. His position took a fairly bright-line approach, starting from the premise that a conflict is falls either within the “war” category or the “law enforcement” category.

Jaffer, on the other hand, pointed out the various nuances of the war against terrorist organizations that differentiate it from traditional wars. In his mind, though some of the incidents of war apply to the conflict (as affirmed by the Supreme Court in cases such as Hamdi v. Rumsfeld), the other panelist’s paradigm was problematic for a number of both legal and practical reasons.

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