Derek Reinbold  //  8/13/17  //  Topic Update


President Trump has escalated his warnings to North Korea, stating that his previous comments were possibly not harsh enough (NYTWaPoWSJ). 

  • Attacking North Korea would be illegal, writes Zachary Price at Take Care
  • Marty Lederman also thinks that President Trump cannot lawfully strike North Korea without congressional approval (Take Care). 
  • Nevertheless, President Trump might still launch an attack without congressional authorization, writes Ilya Somin (WaPo). 
  • The United States should not give up on diplomatic solutions to North Korea’s nuclear capabilities, argues Susan E. Rice (NYT).
  • If President Trump decides to launch of preemptive strike, his senior military advisers have few other options, notes Dan Lamothe (WaPo).
  • President Trump’s threats are clumsy and unlikely to change North Korea’s calculus or behavior, argues Eric Gomez at the Cato Institute. 
  • The New York Times provides an outline of self-defense and international law with regards to the situation in North Korea here

The United Nations Security Council imposed punishing new sanctions on North Korea (NYT).

The Trump Administration is apparently considering whether to privatize a large portion of the war in Afghanistan (WaPoUSA Today). 

  • Such a plan would risk significant problems that could undermine the military’s mission, writes Laura Dickinson (Just Security). 

Updates | The Week of January 22, 2018

1/28/18  //  Daily Update

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

1/14/18  //  Daily Update

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.

Zachary Piaker

Columbia Law School

Updates | The Week of December 18, 2017

12/24/17  //  Daily Update

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.