Climate Change Project

Table of Contents



National Security Law (5461)
Spring 2011

Study Questions - Exam Blog

Chapters 1-3; Chapter 4; Chapter 5; Chapter 6; Chapter 7; Chapters 8-10; Chapters 11-14; Chapters 15-17; Chapters 18-19; Chapters 20-21; Chapter 23;

Chapters 33-35; Chapters 36-37

Course Information

Required Text (You can buy this online if they are not available.)

Dycus, et al, National Security Law, 4th Edition (2006) and the supplement! (The text is available used, but make sure it is the 4th edition. The supplement is new, do not get a used version.) (Check this out for price comparisons)


Constitutional Powers

Congressional Powers

Declaring war

Raise and support armies

The navy

Regulation of the military

Calling up the militia

Governing state militias

Presidential Powers

Commander in Chief

Ambiguous Powers

Habeas corpus

National Security Law Cases and Materials

Bioterrorism Resources

Secrecy News Blog (free subscription) - an excellent source of information about national security issues.


You should check the WWW site for assignment information and course changes every day before class.

Class participation can affect your final grade.

We may have quizzes that will count toward the final grade.

11 Jan

Pages 1-26, and the constitutional provisions on pages 1113-1119. We will return to these constitutional provisions throughout the course. Slides

13 Jan

Read Chapter 3 - Slides

Korean Maps

EXECUTIVE ORDER 10340 - Steel seizure

The Office of Homeland Security & the Homeland Security Council - example of an executive order

18 Jan

Chapter 4. (This is a great chapter.) Chapter Questions - since I am not using the slides in class, a word outline of questions may be easier to for you to review. If you use Word, use the outline view mode and this will work better.

20 Jan

Finish with Watergate and US v. Nixon. Chapter 5. Slides - Chapter_5

We did not talk about Lovett v. US, 328 US 303 (1946), but it merits a note. It really has nothing to do with national security law, but is a rare example of a bill of attainder case. This the constitutional ban on legislation that punishes specific individuals to that it avoid constitutional due process requirements. By banning payment to specific individuals, it triggers this constitutional protection. Had the bill defunded the agency they worked for, but not had not been specifically directed, it would have been find.

We are carrying over the discussion of the dominos of a declaration of war to next class.

25 Jan

Chapter 6 - slides I will spend the first part of the class doing an overview of the key issues in national security law to put our class discussion in better perspective. Think about what you see as the major national security issues facing the US. Think about whether natural disasters such as Katrina should be considered a national security threat.

The Kent State Chronology as background for the Kent State case in the readings. Four Dead in Ohio. This is the the most recent use of military deadly force against protesters in the US.

27 Jan

Chapter 7 to 182. Slides

1 Feb

Breaking news! There is serious national security stuff going on in Egypt. The government is a long standing dictatorship, but it is one that is friendly to the US and to Israel. Israel is our #1 recipient of foreign aid, and Egypt is #2. We are backing the government, which means that everyone who is protesting hates us. If Egypt becomes a democracy, it will not have a government that is particularly friendly to the U.S., or probably Israel. The previous leader of Egypt was assassinated for doing a peace deal with Egypt. Watch or listen to some news about what is going on.

China blocks access to info about Egypt

Breaking news


Finish Chapter 7. Slides

With Egypt breaking, we will put the national security strategy off next class

3 Feb

Finish the materials from last class.

The Obama National Security Strategy - This is an important statement of our objectives and strategies to protect the security of the United States. We will discuss this in class. Start reading now, it is long.

8 Feb

Read Chapter 33 and Chapter 34. This is the background law for the Wikileaks controversy. Over the next few classes we will read through Chapter 37, which is the Pentagon Papers case - the closest analogy to the Wikileaks situation that has been litigated. It is also a landmark Supreme Court decision. Slides

Check out these links:

How to annoy your wife

Transnational crime


Remember to check the Supplement for any additional materials. There is not much for these two chapters, but there are more significant materials for the subsequent chapters.

10 Feb

Chapter 35 and supplement pp. 408 - 431. Remind me to talk about the exam.

Should Spain prosecute Bush administration officals for torture?

15 Feb

Chapter 36 and supplement pp. 431 - 441.

17 Feb

We will finish Chapter 36 and Rosen, from the supplement pp.441 - 454.

22 Feb

Chapter 37. Be prepared to discuss the role how the 1st amendment protects the public as well as the media, and how that changes the arguments for bloggers and the 1st amendment. Also think about reporter shield laws and the extent that the government may force reporters to give up sources - does this undermine the 1st Amendment protections for reporting secrets? Excellent story about journalism through Twitter.

The Pollard Case - this is the one I was thinking about when we were discussing the final results in Rosen. (Sorry about that.) It is the famous case "friendly spy" case and did result in a conviction. The facts were different because he was a government employee. Legal documents - the pardon issue - the apologist argument.

24 Feb

Great essay on the political situation in China. Read this as background on parallels between China and the Mid-East unrest. How do political and economic issues become intertwined? Why is this a national security issue for the US?

Chapter 8.

Viet Nam War Resources:

Vietnam - History - Historical Atlas - War Timeline - Robert S. McNamara - Gulf of Tonkin Resolution

Indonesia - Map of Indonesia - 1950-1965 - 1965-1998

1 March

Chapter 9 - finish fighting the Vietnam War.

3 March

Moive - Dirty War - excellent mock documentary about a dirty bomb attack on London. Note in particular the politics of the drill at the beginning of the movie. Been there, done that.:-)

10 March

Read Chapter 10 and 11

These chapters, plus 12 and 13, cover the legal authority to go into Libya.:-)

15 March

Chapters 12 and 13. Slides to facilitate the discussion of these four chapters. Please review before class.

17 March

Finish Tuesday's assignment. Read chapter 14 - Slides

Watch the news for signs of the Apocalypse. Here is one.

22 March

Breaking News!! UN Resolution 1973 The War Powers Resolution notice

Finish Chapter 14 and discuss the implications of breaking down the wall between domestic and foreign surveillance.

Chapter 15 through 404, plus material from the supplement.The supplement is the reviewed Executive Order 12,333 and revisions to the notes discussing it. Slides

24 March

We will try to finish Chapter 15 - slides We will try to discuss the chapter, rather than just track through the slides. Think about the Iran Contra events and their significance for national security and separation of powers. Note that I am starting to post study questions.

29 March

Chapters 16 and 17. We are now getting to the fun stuff.

31 March

This is an area where I done a lot of work, and where I think the traditional national security/criminal law materials are out of touch with the modern national security state. We are going to do an intensive dip into administrative search theory before we return to the book. This is going to be mostly lecture, but please read the cases for your own edification. If you want to read more about this in the public health context, try this article.

Camara v. Municipal Court City and County, 387 U.S. 523 (1967)

New York v. Burger, 482 U.S. 691 (1987)


5 April

Chapter 18 and Chapter 19 to 532 (In re Sealed Case). There are several important cases, read them carefully. FISA and national security letters are the core legal authority for domestic national security surveillance. Study questions - these track the text, be prepared (before class) to discuss them.

Breaking news - 9/11 trial to be done by military commission.

7 April

Finish Chapter 19 and supplement pages 35-63. (We will skim the FISA amendments, but take a look at them to figure out what they address, plus see slides.) Slides

Chapter 20 to 559 and supplement pages 63-74. Slides

From the Horse's Mouth - Investigative Authorities in the USA PATRIOT Act

12 April

Finish Chapter 20. Read the Does, supp 74 - 90. Most of these are the Does. He was the owner of the small ISP that got the NSL. It just happened that the NYC ACLU was one his ISP clients. Or maybe that was not just conincidence, but we cannot know because he still cannot tell you want the FBI wanted. Here is the record of the lititgation, and here is his interview on On the Media. Read the interview for class.

14 April

Discuss the Weaver case..

Chapter 21 and supplement materials. McWade in the book is replaced by a supplement case, and there are two additional cases. See questions for Chapter 21.

Video shows girl, 6, getting pat-down at Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport

19 April

DOJ has just released a memo detailing the legal justification for the use of force in Libya. This is the best current example of the law we discussed on going to war. We will read and discuss it in detail. (html)

Finish the supplement cases from Chapter 21 and return to whether it would be constitutional to require people to carry and present papers.

Chapter 23. Remember to substitute In re Terrorist Bombings from the supplement for In re Bin Laden in the text. (We have discussed much of the new chapter 22 already and are skipping it for class.)

21 April

Capstone class

Report: iPhones secretly track their users' locations - must read.

Smartphone reader


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