948 episodes

The Lawfare Podcast features discussions with experts, policymakers, and opinion leaders at the nexus of national security, law, and policy. On issues from foreign policy, homeland security, intelligence, and cybersecurity to governance and law, we have doubled down on seriousness at a time when others are running away from it. Visit us at www.lawfareblog.com.
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The Lawfare Podcast The Lawfare Institute

    • Government
    • 4.8 • 5.4K Ratings

The Lawfare Podcast features discussions with experts, policymakers, and opinion leaders at the nexus of national security, law, and policy. On issues from foreign policy, homeland security, intelligence, and cybersecurity to governance and law, we have doubled down on seriousness at a time when others are running away from it. Visit us at www.lawfareblog.com.
Support this show http://supporter.acast.com/lawfare.

See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.

    Peter Bergen Reassessing Osama bin Laden

    Peter Bergen Reassessing Osama bin Laden

    The U.S. raid on the compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan, that brought Osama bin Laden to ultimate justice also recovered nearly half a million files. In 2017, these files were publicly released, but few people have the expertise, the experience and the time to go through those materials, as well as interview family members of bin Laden and former associates to try to paint a full picture of the man. One person who fits that description is Peter Bergen, the author or editor of eight books, including "Holy War, Inc.," the definitive early study of bin Laden and al-Qaeda. Peter is also a vice president at New America and a national security analyst for CNN. Most recently, he is author of "The Rise and Fall of Osama bin Laden," a cradle-to-grave biography that takes advantage of a lot of this new material. 
    David Priess sat down with Peter to talk about bin Laden's evolution from a shy, humble, religious young man to the leader of a global terrorist network bent on killing thousands of civilians. They talked about the development of al-Qaeda as an organization and the U.S. response to al-Qaeda attacks, but they focused especially on what Peter learned from the 470,000+ files and his interviews that made him change his mind about a few things regarding al-Qaeda and Osama bin Laden.
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    • 51 min
    Alex Vindman on 'Here, Right Matters'

    Alex Vindman on 'Here, Right Matters'

    Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Vindman is the Pritzker Military Fellow at the Lawfare Institute, a former NSC staffer, and of course, an impeachment witness in the first impeachment of Donald J. Trump. He is also the author of the new book, "Here, Right Matters: An American Story." He joined Benjamin Wittes to talk about the book and the ground it covers—from Vindman's immigration as a small child, to his departure from the Army, the decision he made to report what he heard Donald Trump say to President Zelensky of Ukraine and the fallout, positive and negative. 
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    • 47 min
    Sue Gordon and John McLaughlin on Intelligence, Biden and Trump

    Sue Gordon and John McLaughlin on Intelligence, Biden and Trump

    The president's interactions with intelligence and public comments about intelligence are dramatically different in the first six months of the Biden administration than they were during the last presidency. To talk about those differences and why they matter for intelligence and national security, David Priess sat down with Sue Gordon and John McLaughlin. Sue Gordon, for two years during the Trump administration, was the principal deputy director of national intelligence, after decades of service at CIA and at the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, or NGA. John McLaughlin served as the acting director of central intelligence during the Bush 43 administration, after a career as an analyst, manager and executive in the CIA. 
    They talked about the differences between the Trump administration and the Biden administration when it comes to intelligence focused on the presidents themselves. And they talked about President Biden's recent comments at Liberty Crossing in McLean, Virginia, the home of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence and the National Counterterrorism Center, what he said and what he didn't say, and what it all reveals about intelligence and policymaking in the Biden years.
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    • 47 min
    Lawfare Archive: Mark Rozell on 'Presidential Power, Secrecy and Accountability'

    Lawfare Archive: Mark Rozell on 'Presidential Power, Secrecy and Accountability'

    From August 6, 2019: Over the years, presidents have used different language to describe the withholding of information from Congress. To discuss the concept of "executive privilege," Margaret Taylor sat down with Mark Rozell, the Dean of the Schar School of Policy and Government at George Mason University, and the author of "Executive Privilege: Presidential Power, Secrecy and Accountability," which chronicles the history of executive privilege in its many forms since the founding of the United States. They talked about what executive privilege is, what is new in the Trump administration's handling of congressional demands for information, and what it all means for the separation of powers in our constitutional democracy.
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    • 37 min
    Lawfare Archive: Bryan Fogel on 'Icarus' and Russia

    Lawfare Archive: Bryan Fogel on 'Icarus' and Russia

    From August 12, 2017: The new Netflix documentary Icarus may seem at first glance off the beaten path for Lawfare. It's a film about doping in international sports, not national security law or policy. But as Benjamin Wittes explained when he reviewed it here, it's really about much more than that:
    Icarus is not about L’Affaire Russe or Russian interference with the 2016 election. But if you want to understand L’Affaire Russe, you should watch it. Because Icarus is the story of the Russian government’s corruption of the integrity of supposedly neutral international processes and its use of covert action to tamper with those processes. If that sounds a little familiar, it should. It is easy to substitute in one’s mind as one watches this film a foreign country’s electoral system for the elaborate anti-doping testing regime whose systematic circumvention and undermining Icarus portrays. The corruption of process is similar. The motivation—the elevation of Russian national pride—significantly overlaps. The lies about it in the face of evidence are indistinguishable. And the result in both cases is a legitimacy crisis, of Olympic medals in one case and of a presidential election in another—a crisis that produces investigation and scandal.This week, Wittes asked Fogel to come on the podcast and talk about the film and its relationship to the broader concerns about Russia that have dominated public attention of late.
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    • 41 min
    Sarah Yerkes on Tunisia's Democracy in Crisis

    Sarah Yerkes on Tunisia's Democracy in Crisis

    For the past decade, Tunisia's democracy has stood out as one of the few remaining bright spots of the Arab Spring. But earlier this week, it entered its own crisis as President Kais Saied declared a state of emergency, suspended parliament and stated his intent to move forward with widespread prosecutions as part of a long-promised anti-corruption effort. Some argue that Saied's strong-arm tactics are exactly what's needed to break the stagnation that's been plaguing Tunisia's economic and political systems, but others fear that it may be the beginning of the end for Tunisian democracy as we know it. To discuss these developments, Scott R. Anderson sat down with Sarah Yerkes, a senior fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and an expert on Tunisia. They discussed the context for Saied's actions, how other actors in Tunisia and the region have reacted, and what the international community can and should do about it.
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    • 38 min

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5
5.4K Ratings

5.4K Ratings

Rita L H ,

Clear analysis of Jan6 Select Committee

Ben discussed strategies & possible results of the “Jan 6 House Select Committee”. I particularly appreciated Molly, Quinta, & Ben’s detailed exploration if what’s at stake for the USA, for Congress, and for the police officer victims of the Jan 6 Insurrection. Thank you

Dovahpod ,

Missing the Mark on Wray

The discussion regarding Wray’s statements to Congress regarding Jan 1 miss the mark. The two central reasons were conservative white men being blinded to the dangers of white men, or being scared of Trump.

There is ZERO discussion of Barr’s memo prohibiting ANY investigation into candidates issued at the beginning of 2020. The issue is not Wray trying to deflect from the FBI; the issue is Barr requiring pre-approval of investigations into candidates, or issues touching on candidates. The failure to consider anything other than the DIOG and draw conclusions from it is a glaring omission.

Atlas2029 ,

Excellent

This podcast continues to shine a light on the most important legal and political issue we face as a democracy! The discussion is clear and thoughtful. The hosts and quests are excellent.

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