Updates | The Week of January 22, 2018
President Trump threatened to take aid away from Palestine if Palestinian leadership remained unwilling to negotiate with Israel. Vice President Mike Pence announced that the new embassy in Jerusalem would open in 2019.
Updates | The Week of January 15, 2018
President Trump refuses to certify that the Iranian nuclear disarmament deal is in America’s best interests, but is expected to allow the accord to continue. The Trump administration announces it will suspend most security assistance to Pakistan.
Updates | The Week of December 18, 2017
President Trump said in a speech on national security that Russia and China “seek to challenge American influence, values and wealth,” but did not directly address Russian interference in the 2016 election. A majority of nations in the United Nations General Assembly voted in favor of a resolution rebuking America's decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and relocate the US embassy to the city.
Update | The Week of November 27, 2017
President Trump’s waiver of the Jerusalem Embassy Act is set to expire, and how President Trump acts may signal his approach to the Israeli-Palestinian dispute.
Updates | The Week of November 20, 2017
The U.S. returned North Korea to the somewhat problematic list of state sponsors of terrorism. Recent military actions show signs of expanding air war in Afghanistan, and a shift away from foreign aid to military action.
Updates | The Week of October 23, 2017
Reports continued to trickle out regarding the ambush of a Special Forces team in Niger. The ambush prompted commentary on the President's legal authority for military operations overseas.
Human Rights and Nuclear Ambitions
Humanitarian concerns and international human rights law simply can’t be ignored or downplayed in any discussion of the North Korean nuclear problem—they are two sides of the same coin
Trump and North Korea: Where's Congress?
Guest poster Eric Segall argues that Congress must act now to ensure that the President does not unilaterally commit an act of war without Congressional consent.
How Might Congress Reinforce NATO?
President Trump's overseas trip has cast doubt on longstanding consensus features of U.S. foreign policy, particularly our commitment to NATO. Here are some ways Congress might respond.
Trump’s Visit to Israel
President Trump’s visit to Israel comes at a fraught time for his Administration and a pivotal moment for the relationship between the two countries.
Cruise Missiles More Dangerous Than the "Nuclear Option"
If Congress does nothing now to further delineate the scope of presidential authority to deploy military force, it will effectively be forfeiting, now and forever, its constitutional authority to check presidential moves short of all-out state-to-state war.
International Human Rights Law in the Trump Era
The Trump Administration’s actions thus far are not just an attack on human rights norms. And they’re not merely a rejection of international law. They’re also an assault on our national security and foreign policy.
Why Did Trump Believe the Syria Strike Was Lawful?
When the President unilaterally decides that America will start killing people in foreign countries, the least we can expect is a sound justification for that action under domestic and international law. Yet Trump has yet to offer one.
Those Who Do Not Know History
On the first full day of Passover, the Trump Administration offered several lessons about institutionalized racism and ethnic cleansing.
Updates | The Week of September 25, 2017
Tensions with North Korea escalated this week, prompting North Korea's foreign minister to claim that the U.S. had declared war and that a strike against the U.S. mainland was "inevitable." Foreign leaders warned President Trump of the consequences of violating the Iran nuclear agreement.
Updates | The Week of April 3, 2017
The White House violated traditional security protocol when announcing Jared Kushner's visit to Iraq. Further, President Trump's proposed budget cuts may worsen a famine in Africa.
Updates | The Week of March 27, 2017
The Trump Administration has signalled a reduced commitment to human rights internationally, and President Trump's proposed cuts to the State Department may hamper U.S. foreign policy.
Updates | The Week of August 14, 2017
The administration’s North Korea strategy is unclear. President Trump’s remarks on the Barcelona terror attacks showed a disregard for human rights and factual accuracy.
Updates | The Week of June 5, 2017
President Trump takes credit for siding with Saudi Arabia against Qatar; meanwhile, U.S. diplomats are pushing back against the President.
Updates | The Week of August 21, 2017
Commentators noted that the Trump administration may be attempting to undermine the Iran nuclear deal, and discussed the international law implications of the administration's new Afghanistan strategy.
Updates | The Week of April 24, 2017
Politicians ask the Administration to explain its legal justifications for the strike in Syria, pressure mounts with North Korea, and President Trump calls the United Nations an "underperformer."
Updates | The Week of August 7, 2017
President Trump escalated his warnings to North Korea, and the UN Security Council passed harsh sanctions against the country. The Trump administration is reportedly considering whether to privatize large portions of the war in Afghanistan.
Updates | The Week of October 16
President Trump's decision to withdraw from the Iranian nuclear deal has been widely condemned by Iranians and in Europe. Relations with North Korea continue to be tense. The Trump Administration is enabling Chinese efforts to undermine UN human rights work.
Updates | The Week of July 17, 2017
The President plans to impose new sanctions on Iran. In light of major budget cuts, Secretary of State Tillerson will shutter many important offices within the State Department.
Updates | The Week of June 12, 2017
President Trump seeks to revert to stricter trade policies with Cuba, and the Senate allows the Administration to transfer weapons to Saudi Arabia.
Updates | The Week of May 1, 2017
Human Rights advocates are concerned about the President's plans to cut international aid funding and growing relationships with despotic regimes.
Updates | The Week of September 18, 2017
Tension increased between the U.S. and North Korea this week as President Trump vowed to destroy North Korea if needed in an address to the U.N. and announced a new executive order increasing sanctions against North Korea. President Trump will likely decertify Iran's compliance with the nuclear deal, which is causing concern among commentators.
The Story Thus Far: International Law
Trump has promised a foreign policy of America First. His conduct thus far suggests that he will follow through on that promise, but in ways that risk violating domestic and international law. Here are some useful analyses of the story thus far.
Updates | The Week of May 29, 2017
President Trump will not move the U.S. embassy in Israel to Jerusalem. A new tool allows you to see how the new administration is utilizing sanctions against foreign entities, and how its approach differs from past administrations. And the Iranian election victory of Hassan Rouhani presents challenges and opportunities for the U.S. administration.
Updates | The Week of April 17, 2017
The Administration navigated foreign policy issues throughout the world, particularly with North Korea, Afghanistan, Syria, and Iran. In North Korea, the Administration spent the week explaining its falsehood that it had sent an aircraft carrier into the Sea of Japan.
Updates | The Week of May 8, 2017
A new suit seeks documents detailing the Trump Administration’s justifications for military action in Syria. The ACLU filed a Freedom of Information Act suit seeking documents related to President Trump’s unsuccessful Yemen raid.