SERIES: Judicial Issues Forum | No. 17 of 29 « Previous | Next »

Feb 1

Past Event

Terrorists and Detainees: Do We Need a New National Security Court?


In the wake of the 9/11 attacks and the capture of hundreds of suspected al Qaeda and Taliban fighters, we have been engaged in a national debate as to the proper standards and procedures for detaining “enemy combatants” and prosecuting them for war crimes. Dissatisfaction with the procedures established at Guantanamo for detention decisions and trials of detainees for war crimes by military commissions, and concerns about the feasibility of conducting major terrorism trials in regular Article III courts, have led to proposals to establish a special National Security Court.

This new court, which would have greater flexibility to conduct non-public proceedings than do the regular federal courts, could make or review status and detention decisions and/or conduct trials of suspected terrorists. The conference will discuss the pros and cons of establishing such a new federal court, and what jurisdiction should be assigned to such a court.

Event Agenda

  • Welcoming Remarks

    • Claudio Grossman

      Dean, American University Washington College of Law

  • Panel 1: War or Crime? The Legal Framework for Detaining and Prosecuting Enemy Combatants

  • Lunch with Keynote Speaker

    • Honorable Leonie Brinkema

      U.S. District Judge, E.D. Va (Judge in the Moussaoui case)

  • Panel 2: A National Security Court for Detention Decisions

    • Robert Chesney

      Professor, Wake Forest Law School

    • David Cole

      Professor, Georgetown University Law Center

    • Elisa Massimino

      Director, Washington Office, Human Rights First

    • Matthew Waxman

      Professor, Columbia Law School

  • Panel 3: A National Security Court for Terrorist Crimes

    • James Baker

      Former Counsel for Intelligence Policy, U.S. Department of Justice

    • Andrew McCarthy

      Director, Center for Law & Counterterrorism

    • Andrew Patel

      private criminal defense lawyer who has represented a number of terrorist suspects, including Jose Padilla

  • Moderator

    • Kenneth Anderson

      Professor, American University Washington College of Law


February 1, 2008

10:00 AM - 4:00 PM EST

American University Washington College of Law

Room 603

4801 Massachusetts Avenue, NW


For More Information

Office of Special Events & Continuing Legal Education, American University Washington College of Law


SERIES: Judicial Issues Forum | No. 17