CENTER FOR ETHICS AND THE RULE OF LAW​

Domestic Violent Extremism and the Threat to U.S. National Security

September 28 -
 30, 2022

Co-sponsored By: The Annenberg Public Policy Center and Perry World House

The Conference

Since the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks on the United States, government attention has been directed largely at external threats to national security from violent extremists. But recent incidents, such as the mass shootings in El Paso, Texas; Charleston, South Carolina; and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; the “Unite the Right” march in Charlottesville, Virginia; and the January 6 events at the U.S. Capitol, have brought renewed attention to the threats stemming from domestic violent extremism. According to Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas, racially or ethnically motivated violent extremists and militia violent extremists currently pose one of the most critical threats to U.S. national security. To confront the problem, President Biden ordered a 100-day comprehensive review of existing government efforts to address the threat. The results of that review were released recently by the National Security Council as the “National Strategy for Countering Domestic Terrorism.”

This conference will bring together leading scholars and practitioners in the fields of national security, law, media, ethics, psychology, and education to engage in interdisciplinary discussion and analysis of the threats posed by contemporary domestic violent extremism, and to develop new approaches for addressing the thorny legal and ethical dilemmas associated with responding to these threats. The conference will begin on Wednesday afternoon with a public keynote by former U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security, Jeh Charles Johnson. On Thursday, we will have closed workshop sessions examining the new challenges contemporary domestic violent extremism poses to U.S. national security; connections between domestic violent extremism and the spread of disinformation and conspiracy theories through social media, members of the government, the bar and the press; and novel ways of financing domestic violent extremism. The day will end with a public keynote panel, followed by a cocktail reception and dinner. Friday’s sessions will center on questions such as: What should the role of the Intelligence Community be in detecting and surveilling domestic violent extremists? What are the strengths and shortcomings of extant law and the new national strategy for countering contemporary domestic violent extremism, as well as the ethical concerns they raise? Could promoting quality civics education in communities particularly vulnerable to radicalization aid in preempting domestic violent extremism?

Schedule

If you are attending the entire conference: This program has been approved for a total of 12.0 Ethics CLE credits for Pennsylvania lawyers. CLE credit may be available in other jurisdictions as well. Attendees seeking CLE credit can make a payment via cash or check made out to “The Trustees of the University of Pennsylvania” on the day of the event or via credit card via the online registration link in the amount of $480.00 ($240.00 public interest/non-profit attorneys). In order to receive the appropriate amount of credit, evaluation forms must be completed.

Penn Carey Law Alumni receive CLE credits free through The W.P. Carey Foundation’s generous commitment to Lifelong Learning.

Wednesday, September 28


Arrivals


5:00 – 6:30 pm
Keynote (Public)

Keynote Address
The Hon. Jeh Charles Johnson, Former Secretary, U.S. Department of Homeland Security

Is Violent Extremism a Threat to Democracy? Reflections on Current Challenges in U.S. National Security Keynote

REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED. IN-PERSON AND VIRTUAL TICKETS ARE AVAILABLE HERE.

Distinguished Guest
Secretary Jeh Charles Johnson

Jeh Johnson is a partner in the law firm of Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison, LLP, who in public life was Secretary of Homeland Security (2013-2017), General Counsel of the Department of Defense (2009-2012), General Counsel of the Department of the Air Force (1998-2001), and an Assistant United States Attorney in the Southern District of New York (1989-1991).

Johnson is a 2022 recipient of the Ellis Island Medal of Honor, a 2021 recipient of the American Lawyer’s Lifetime Achievement Award, as “an American statesman [who] has devoted his career to the public interest,” and a 2018 recipient of the Ronald Reagan Peace Through Strength Award, presented at the Reagan Presidential Library, for “contribut[ing] greatly to the defense of our nation,” and “guiding us through turbulent times with courage and wisdom.”

Johnson is on the board of directors of Lockheed Martin, U.S. Steel, the Council on Foreign Relations, the 9/11 Memorial and Museum in New York City, the Center for a New American Security, and is a trustee of Columbia University. Johnson is a frequent commentator on national and homeland security matters on NBC’s Meet The Press, CBS, MSNBC, CNN, FOX, CNBC, NPR, Bloomberg TV and other news networks, and has written op-eds in The Washington Post, Lawfare, USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, The Hill, and elsewhere. Johnson is also currently host of a classic R&B radio show on WBGO 88.3FM, based in Newark, New Jersey.

Johnson is a graduate of Morehouse College (1979) and Columbia Law School (1982) and the recipient of 12 honorary degrees.

Moderator
Professor Claire Finkelstein

Algernon Biddle Professor of Law and Professor of Philosophy; Faculty Director of the Center for Ethics and the Rule of Law

Claire Finkelstein’s current research addresses national security law and policy and democratic governance with a focus on related ethical and rule of law issues.

Professor Finkelstein is the founder and academic director of the Center for Ethics and the Rule of Law (CERL), a non-partisan interdisciplinary institute affiliated with the University of Pennsylvania’s Annenberg Public Policy Center (APPC). She is a distinguished research fellow at APPC and a senior fellow at the Foreign Policy Research Institute (FPRI).

An expert in the law of armed conflict, military ethics, and national security law, she is a co-editor (with Jens David Ohlin) of The Oxford Series in Ethics, National Security, and the Rule of Law, and an editor of five of its volumes: Targeted Killings: Law & Morality in an Asymmetrical World (2012); Cyber War: Law and Ethics for Virtual Conflicts (2015); Weighing Lives in War (2017); Sovereignty and the New Executive Authority (2018); and Preserving Cultural Heritage in Times of War (2022).

This program has been approved for 1.5 Ethics CLE credits for Pennsylvania lawyers. CLE credit may be available in other jurisdictions as well. Attendees seeking CLE credit can make a payment via cash or check made out to “The Trustees of the University of Pennsylvania” on the day of the event or via credit card via the online registration link in the amount of $60.00 ($30.00 public interest/non-profit attorneys). In order to receive the appropriate amount of credit, passwords provided throughout the program must be noted in your evaluation form.

Penn Carey Law Alumni receive CLE credits free through The W.P. Carey Foundation’s generous commitment to Lifelong Learning.


Thursday, September 29

This program has been approved for 5.0 Ethics CLE credits for Pennsylvania lawyers. CLE credit may be available in other jurisdictions as well. Attendees seeking CLE credit can make a payment via cash or check made out to “The Trustees of the University of Pennsylvania” on the day of the event or via credit card via the online registration link in the amount of $200.00 ($100.00 public interest/non-profit attorneys). In order to receive the appropriate amount of credit, evaluation forms must be completed.

Penn Carey Law Alumni receive CLE credits free through The W.P. Carey Foundation’s generous commitment to Lifelong Learning.


9:00 – 9:30 am Registration and Breakfast


9:30 – 10:45 am
Welcome & Opening

Session I (Closed)

The New Threat of Domestic Violent Extremism

Moderator: Ilya Rudyak

A recent assessment by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) maintains that domestic violent extremism poses a “heightened threat” to the nation in 2021. Although domestic violent extremism is not new to the U.S., its contemporary incarnation presents new challenges to U.S. national security. The sociological and technological changes that have reshaped the social and political landscape of the country over the past decades have also facilitated the spread of disinformation, amplified radical narratives, and provided effective tools for coordinating and financing violent action.

This session will examine these new challenges and the means to counter them, taking into account historical, comparative and psychological perspectives. Participants will discuss the past and present manifestations of domestic violent extremism in the U.S. and will analyze parallel patterns of conduct in other countries. They will also examine the psychological motivations, ideologies, and organizational structures of modern domestic extremist groups, and consider how contemporary acts of domestic violence, including but not limited to the January 6 events at the U.S. Capitol, shed light on the intricate connections among extremist networks. Building on this discussion, participants will scrutinize existing legal definitions of domestic violent extremism, evaluate the legal and ethical ramifications of these definitions, and consider how domestic violent extremism should be defined to facilitate principled efforts to counter it.


10:45 – 11:00 am Break


11:00 – 12:15 pm
Session II (Closed)

Sources of Disinformation: Social Media and Domestic Violent Extremism

Moderator: Emily Kaufman

Social media has grown exponentially over the past two decades, becoming an increasingly popular arena for extremists to spread disinformation and advance their positions. Extremist groups use social media platforms to communicate, disseminate conspiracy theories, and radicalize potential sympathizers and recruits. The allure of social networks for these purposes is based, in part, on controversial characteristics of their proprietary algorithms, ostensibly designed to promote the most polarizing and divisive content, including the very content extremist groups aspire and struggle to spread. At the same time, social media can be an invaluable resource for identifying extremists, refuting their propaganda, and de-radicalizing their targets.

This session will address the role social media can play in fomenting, facilitating, or frustrating domestic violent extremism. Participants will discuss the legal and ethical responsibilities of tech companies and the actions (if any) they should or could take to curtail extremist content and associated currents of misinformation and disinformation on their platforms. For example, would tech companies fulfill their responsibilities only by managing extremist content post-hoc? Or must they modify their algorithms ex-ante? Could tech companies go the extra mile by engaging in proactive de-radicalization efforts such as “nudging” users away from extremist content or providing information disproving extremist propaganda? Should they? Participants will also deliberate on whether tech companies’ responsibilities and actions should vary according to the characteristics of the people targeted by extremists, such as their vocation or vulnerability to radicalization. For instance, would it be legal for tech companies to treat active military personnel differently than other social media users by preventing specific content from appearing on servicemembers’ personalized news feeds? Would it be ethical? And if not, should tech companies suppress that specific content from all users? Finally, participants will consider the broader implications of extremist content censorship by private actors, whether it should be supervised, and by whom.


12:15 – 1:15 pm Lunch


1:15 – 2:30 pm
Session III (Closed)

Sources of Disinformation: Members of the Government, the Bar, and the Press and Domestic Violent Extremism

Moderator: Claire Finkelstein

While social media is a new and prominent source of disinformation, traditional actors in the public sphere—including members of the government, the bar, and the press—might play a more critical role in spreading disinformation, lending credence to conspiracy theories, and facilitating contemporary domestic violent extremism. The recent growth of such extremism correlates with officials at the highest levels of government encouraging—or acquiescing in—violent conduct by domestic extremists, lawyers partaking in judicial proceedings intended to promote narratives that may incite or cover up violent conduct, and reporters, commentators, and news anchors echoing and amplifying such narratives.

This session will address the legal, professional, and ethical responsibilities of these actors with regard to spreading disinformation that may facilitate domestic violent extremism. Participants will analyze these responsibilities and the variation among them, in the context of real and hypothetical examples. For instance, is it legal for an official to make a deceptive statement knowing it may provoke, normalize, or mask violent action? Should it be? Do professional standards allow a lawyer to bring or participate in a proceeding she knows will lend credibility to that official’s deceptive statement? Should they? What is an ethical way for a reporter, a commentator, or a news anchor to cover that statement or the associated proceedings? When (if at all) should one of these actors resist or refuse to provide such coverage? Participants will also evaluate the extent to which the answers to these questions have bearing on both facilitating and countering domestic violent extremism, and will consider modes of legal and extra-legal accountability that may be appropriate for these actors.


2:30 – 3:00 pm Break


3:00 – 4:15 pm
Session IV (Closed)

Financing and Sponsoring Domestic Violent Extremism

Moderator: John Geiringer

Violent extremists require financial resources to recruit members, coordinate logistics, and conduct operations. White supremacist groups such as the group formerly known as Identity Evropa, a sponsor of the “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville, rely on various digital platforms to fundraise, including crowdfunding sites like Patreon and cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin that obfuscate the origins of funds. Through these online pathways, contemporary domestic violent extremist groups can raise significant capital with little oversight at a global scale. Moreover, evidence of transnational ties between domestic violent extremists and like-minded individuals outside of the U.S. raise additional concerns about foreign sponsorship.

This session will address both conventional and contemporary methods of funding for domestic violent extremists. Participants will consider key questions such as: What are the ways in which extremist groups use financial platforms to fund their criminal activities? Who is sponsoring domestic extremist groups? What role do banks and other financial institutions play in facilitating such funding and what more can they do to foil it? Participants will also consider which new tools could aid policymakers, law enforcement, and other actors, including civil society organizations, in disrupting the financing of domestic extremism.


5:00 – 6:30 pm
Keynote (Public)

Public Keynote Panel: Perspectives on Domestic Violent Extremism

REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED. IN-PERSON AND VIRTUAL TICKETS ARE AVAILABLE HERE.

Join the Center for Ethics and the Rule of Law, the Annenberg Public Policy Center, and Perry World House of the University of Pennsylvania for a panel discussion with Mr. Robert Kelner of Covington & Burling LLP, and the CERL Executive Board, Prof. Mary McCord of Georgetown University, and Mr. Oren Segal of the Anti-Defamation League. The event will take place on September 29, 2022, at 5:00 p.m. ET. Prof. Shawn Turner of Michigan State University and the CERL Executive Board will moderate.

This event is free and open to the public. Registration is required.

This program has been approved for 1.5 Ethics CLE credits for Pennsylvania lawyers. CLE credit may be available in other jurisdictions as well. Attendees seeking CLE credit can make a payment via cash or check made out to “The Trustees of the University of Pennsylvania” on the day of the event or via credit card via the online registration link in the amount of $60.00 ($30.00 public interest/non-profit attorneys). In order to receive the appropriate amount of credit, passwords provided throughout the program must be noted in your evaluation form.

Penn Carey Law Alumni receive CLE credits free through The W.P. Carey Foundation’s generous commitment to Lifelong Learning.

PANELISTS

Mr. Robert Kelner, Covington & Burling LLP

Robert Kelner is a partner at Covington & Burling LLP, in Washington, D.C., where he chairs the firm’s Election and Political Law Practice Group. He counsels clients on a wide range of political law and government ethics matters, and defends them in civil and criminal law enforcement investigations concerning political activity. He also leads the firm’s prominent congressional investigations practice. Mr. Kelner is a leading authority on the Foreign Agents Registration Act, as well as federal and state campaign finance and lobbying disclosure laws. He has defended numerous corporations and individuals in investigations by the U.S. Department of Justice’s National Security Division and Public Integrity Section, the Federal Election Commission, Offices of Inspector General, and other federal and state agencies. In his congressional investigations practice, he has represented clients before every major congressional investigation committee, as well as the House and Senate Ethics Committees. He is ranked by Chambers USA as one of the top political law and congressional investigations attorneys in the country. [Read full bio here]

Professor Mary McCord, Georgetown University

Mary McCord is Executive Director of the Institute for Constitutional Advocacy and Protection and a Visiting Professor of Law at Georgetown University Law Center. McCord was the Acting Assistant Attorney General for National Security at the U.S. Department of Justice from 2016 to 2017 and Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General for National Security from 2014 to 2016. Previously, McCord was an Assistant U.S. Attorney for nearly 20 years at the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia. McCord is a member of the ABA’s Standing Committee on National Security and the Law and is a non-resident senior fellow at the Atlantic Council and a nonresident fellow at the George Washington University Program on Extremism.[Read full bio here]

Mr. Oren Segal, Anti-Defamation League

As Vice President of the Center on Extremism, Oren Segal and his team combat extremism, terrorism and all forms of hate in the real world and online. Recognized as the foremost authority on extremism, the Center provides resources, expertise and training which enables law enforcement, public officials and internet and technology companies to identify and counter emerging threats. [Read full bio here]

MODERATOR

Professor Shawn Turner, Michigan State University

Shawn Turner is a professor of national security communication at Michigan State University and an On-Air national security analyst for CNN. He recently completed a year-long special assignment serving as a senior advisor to the Secretary of Veterans Affairs. His previous government positions include serving as the Director of Communication for National Intelligence at the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, as Deputy White House Press Secretary for National Security, and as Deputy Press Secretary for Foreign Affairs for the National Security Council. Earlier in his career, Shawn served for 21 years in the United States Marine Corps. [Read full bio here]


6:30 – 8:30 pm Dinner


Friday, September 30

This program has been approved for 4.0 Ethics CLE credits for Pennsylvania lawyers. CLE credit may be available in other jurisdictions as well. Attendees seeking CLE credit can make a payment via cash or check made out to “The Trustees of the University of Pennsylvania” on the day of the event or via credit card via the online registration link in the amount of $160.00 ($80.00 public interest/non-profit attorneys). In order to receive the appropriate amount of credit, evaluation forms must be completed.

Penn Carey Law Alumni receive CLE credits free through The W.P. Carey Foundation’s generous commitment to Lifelong Learning.


9:00 – 9:30 am Breakfast



9:30 – 10:45 am
Session V (Closed)

Detecting Domestic Violent Extremism: The Intelligence Community Challenge

Moderator: Patrick Eddington

The seventeen agencies comprising the U.S. Intelligence Community (IC) have a vast array of sophisticated and effective tools at their disposal. They also have the authority to use these tools for surveilling non-U.S. persons—including foreign violent extremists. In contrast, these agencies’ authority to surveil U.S. persons is substantially limited by varied legal safeguards derived from the U.S. Constitution, statutes, and executive orders (e.g., the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act and EO 12333). Abiding by these important safeguards poses a challenge for the IC even in the context of intelligence operations that focus exclusively on non-U.S. persons, because such operations may still affect U.S. persons. Abiding by these safeguards in the context of domestic violent extremism, which requires intelligence operations to focus directly on U.S. persons, confronts the IC with an even greater—arguably insurmountable—challenge.

This session will address this challenging landscape and the paths to overcoming it. Participants will evaluate the balance between the key values that existing legal safeguards protect against the need to detect and monitor domestic violent extremism. Do the safeguard-driven limitations on IC operations perilously impede the nation’s access to information it needs to fully understand the threat of domestic violent extremism? Could the urgency to obtain such information lead to the hasty loosening of vital safeguards and compromise key values? Or perhaps are the very assumptions that more information on domestic violent extremism is needed and that it should be collected by the IC agencies flawed? Perhaps sufficient information on domestic violent extremism already exists within the extensive body of academic research on the subject, and more can be (or already is) obtained by non-governmental actors such as private security, communications or tech companies. Moreover, perhaps the most vital information on domestic violent extremism is not covert, but publicly available. Participants will consider this possibility and examine an innovative idea to create a new institution (whether within or outside of government) devoted to collecting and analyzing open source intelligence on domestic violent extremism. They will evaluate domestic and foreign cases suggesting the unique benefits of taking open source intelligence seriously (and the dangers of ignoring it) in the context of violent extremism, and weigh these benefits against the legal hurdles and ethical quandaries associated with creating an institution that will systemically surveil U.S. citizens—the public availability of such information notwithstanding.


10:45 – 11:15 am Break


11:15 – 12:30 pm
Session VI (Closed)

Preventing Domestic Violent Extremism: Strategic and Legal Landscape

Moderator: Jamil Jaffer

The Biden administration’s recent release of the “National Strategy for Countering Domestic Terrorism” marks the first-ever comprehensive government response aimed at addressing violent domestic extremism. This new national strategy signals a shift in U.S. counter-terrorism policy away from foreign activity, refocusing federal resources on understanding and, ultimately, disrupting and preventing domestic violent extremism.

This session will assess the strengths and shortcomings of extant law and the new national strategy for countering contemporary domestic violent extremism. Participants will consider the current federal and state apparatus for investigating, prosecuting, and punishing violent extremism, including hate crime statutes, RICO, and VICAR, the civil remedies available to victims of violent extremism, and how the new national strategy changes this landscape. They will also assess current proposals for state and federal legislation on domestic violent extremism legislation. Drawing on U.S. experiences to counter foreign extremism, participants will pay particular attention to legal and ethical concerns arising from measures to counter domestic violent extremism and the concomitant increase in the power of government. They will examine these concerns thematically, in contexts such as interrogation techniques, detention conditions, and prosecution methods, and more broadly, with regard to the protection of constitutional rights such as freedom of speech and assembly and the preservation of the rule of law.


12:30 – 1:30 pm Lunch


1:30 – 2:45 pm
Session VII (Closed)

Preempting Domestic Violent Extremism: Strengthening Civics Education

Moderator: Ted McConnel

Two-thirds of Americans lack a basic understanding of civic institutions, according to the Campaign for the Civic Mission of Schools. The 2021 Annenberg Public Policy Center’s annual civics survey found that forty-three percent of U.S. adults cannot correctly name all branches of government. With only nine states and the District of Columbia requiring one full year of U.S. government or civics, the amount of time and resources dedicated to civics education in high schools across the country has declined considerably. The resulting lack of civics knowledge may leave large swaths of the American public susceptible to the spread of disinformation and attempts to sway public affairs. Further, civics education is absent in the training of most military personnel; the DOD Common Military Training has no civics education requirement nor do the corresponding regulations for the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, or Air Force. The prevalence of erroneous claims on constitutional rights voiced by military personnel, including veterans who took part in January 6 events at the U.S. Capitol, raise further grave concerns.

This session will address the potential of civics education for preempting domestic violent extremism. Participants will examine whether a causal link exists between insufficiencies in civics education and vulnerability to disinformation campaigns and radicalization efforts. Are there differences in this regard between the general population and specific communities, including the military community? What are the national security implications of such differences? Participants will also explore ways in which quality civics education might play a role in stemming the rise of domestic violent extremism. What types of educational interventions could be effective in disrupting channels of disinformation? In hindering radicalization? In obstructing violent extremist recruitment? Participants will discuss the ways in which these educational interventions might be tailored to the characteristics of specific communities. In particular, they will examine an innovative program to strengthen civics education in the military and will deliberate on which aspects of civics might be vital to emphasize in this specific context and how. Finally, participants will assess the serious risk of state-sponsored civics education efforts becoming or being perceived as disinformation campaigns and will evaluate strategies to minimize this risk.


2:45 – 3:00 pm Concluding Remarks


Keynotes

Wednesday, September 28, 2022


Keynote
5:00 – 6:30 pm


Public Keynote Address
The Hon. Jeh Charles Johnson, Former Secretary, U.S. Department of Homeland Security

Is Violent Extremism a Threat to Democracy? Reflections on Current Challenges in U.S. National Security Keynote

REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED. IN-PERSON AND VIRTUAL TICKETS ARE AVAILABLE HERE.

Distinguished Guest
Secretary Jeh Charles Johnson

Jeh Johnson is a partner in the law firm of Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison, LLP, who in public life was Secretary of Homeland Security (2013-2017), General Counsel of the Department of Defense (2009-2012), General Counsel of the Department of the Air Force (1998-2001), and an Assistant United States Attorney in the Southern District of New York (1989-1991).

Johnson is a 2022 recipient of the Ellis Island Medal of Honor, a 2021 recipient of the American Lawyer’s Lifetime Achievement Award, as “an American statesman [who] has devoted his career to the public interest,” and a 2018 recipient of the Ronald Reagan Peace Through Strength Award, presented at the Reagan Presidential Library, for “contribut[ing] greatly to the defense of our nation,” and “guiding us through turbulent times with courage and wisdom.”

Johnson is on the board of directors of Lockheed Martin, U.S. Steel, the Council on Foreign Relations, the 9/11 Memorial and Museum in New York City, the Center for a New American Security, and is a trustee of Columbia University. Johnson is a frequent commentator on national and homeland security matters on NBC’s Meet The Press, CBS, MSNBC, CNN, FOX, CNBC, NPR, Bloomberg TV and other news networks, and has written op-eds in The Washington Post, Lawfare, USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, The Hill, and elsewhere. Johnson is also currently host of a classic R&B radio show on WBGO 88.3FM, based in Newark, New Jersey.

Johnson is a graduate of Morehouse College (1979) and Columbia Law School (1982) and the recipient of 12 honorary degrees.

Moderator
Professor Claire Finkelstein

Algernon Biddle Professor of Law and Professor of Philosophy; Faculty Director of the Center for Ethics and the Rule of Law

Claire Finkelstein’s current research addresses national security law and policy and democratic governance with a focus on related ethical and rule of law issues.

Professor Finkelstein is the founder and academic director of the Center for Ethics and the Rule of Law (CERL), a non-partisan interdisciplinary institute affiliated with the University of Pennsylvania’s Annenberg Public Policy Center (APPC). She is a distinguished research fellow at APPC and a senior fellow at the Foreign Policy Research Institute (FPRI).

An expert in the law of armed conflict, military ethics, and national security law, she is a co-editor (with Jens David Ohlin) of The Oxford Series in Ethics, National Security, and the Rule of Law, and an editor of five of its volumes: Targeted Killings: Law & Morality in an Asymmetrical World (2012); Cyber War: Law and Ethics for Virtual Conflicts (2015); Weighing Lives in War (2017); Sovereignty and the New Executive Authority (2018); and Preserving Cultural Heritage in Times of War (2022). Most recently, she served as a contributing reporter to If It’s Broke, Fix It: Restoring Federal Government Ethics and Rule of Law published by the Brookings Institution in 2021.

This program has been approved for 1.5 Ethics CLE credits for Pennsylvania lawyers. CLE credit may be available in other jurisdictions as well. Attendees seeking CLE credit can make a payment via cash or check made out to “The Trustees of the University of Pennsylvania” on the day of the event or via credit card via the online registration link in the amount of $60.00 ($30.00 public interest/non-profit attorneys). In order to receive the appropriate amount of credit, passwords provided throughout the program must be noted in your evaluation form.

Penn Carey Law Alumni receive CLE credits free through The W.P. Carey Foundation’s generous commitment to Lifelong Learning.


Thursday, September 29, 2022


Keynote
5:00 – 6:30 pm


Public Keynote Panel
: Perspectives on Domestic Violent Extremism

REGISTRATION IS REQUIRED. IN-PERSON AND VIRTUAL TICKETS ARE AVAILABLE HERE.

Join the Center for Ethics and the Rule of Law, the Annenberg Public Policy Center, and Perry World House of the University of Pennsylvania for a panel discussion with Mr. Robert Kelner of Covington & Burling LLP, and the CERL Executive Board, Prof. Mary McCord of Georgetown University, and Mr. Oren Segal of the Anti-Defamation League. The event will take place on September 29, 2022, at 5:00 p.m. ET. Prof. Shawn Turner of Michigan State University and the CERL Executive Board will moderate.

This event is free and open to the public. Registration is required.

This program has been approved for 1.5 Ethics CLE credits for Pennsylvania lawyers. CLE credit may be available in other jurisdictions as well. Attendees seeking CLE credit can make a payment via cash or check made out to “The Trustees of the University of Pennsylvania” on the day of the event or via credit card via the online registration link in the amount of $60.00 ($30.00 public interest/non-profit attorneys). In order to receive the appropriate amount of credit, passwords provided throughout the program must be noted in your evaluation form.

Penn Carey Law Alumni receive CLE credits free through The W.P. Carey Foundation’s generous commitment to Lifelong Learning.

PANELISTS

Mr. Robert Kelner, Covington & Burling LLP

Robert Kelner is a partner at Covington & Burling LLP, in Washington, D.C., where he chairs the firm’s Election and Political Law Practice Group. He counsels clients on a wide range of political law and government ethics matters, and defends them in civil and criminal law enforcement investigations concerning political activity. He also leads the firm’s prominent congressional investigations practice. Mr. Kelner is a leading authority on the Foreign Agents Registration Act, as well as federal and state campaign finance and lobbying disclosure laws. He has defended numerous corporations and individuals in investigations by the U.S. Department of Justice’s National Security Division and Public Integrity Section, the Federal Election Commission, Offices of Inspector General, and other federal and state agencies. In his congressional investigations practice, he has represented clients before every major congressional investigation committee, as well as the House and Senate Ethics Committees. He is ranked by Chambers USA as one of the top political law and congressional investigations attorneys in the country. [Read full bio here]

Professor Mary McCord, Georgetown University

Mary McCord is Executive Director of the Institute for Constitutional Advocacy and Protection and a Visiting Professor of Law at Georgetown University Law Center. McCord was the Acting Assistant Attorney General for National Security at the U.S. Department of Justice from 2016 to 2017 and Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General for National Security from 2014 to 2016. Previously, McCord was an Assistant U.S. Attorney for nearly 20 years at the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia. McCord is a member of the ABA’s Standing Committee on National Security and the Law and is a non-resident senior fellow at the Atlantic Council and a nonresident fellow at the George Washington University Program on Extremism.[Read full bio here]

Mr. Oren Segal, Anti-Defamation League

As Vice President of the Center on Extremism, Oren Segal and his team combat extremism, terrorism and all forms of hate in the real world and online. Recognized as the foremost authority on extremism, the Center provides resources, expertise and training which enables law enforcement, public officials and internet and technology companies to identify and counter emerging threats. [Read full bio here]

MODERATOR

Professor Shawn Turner, Michigan State University

Shawn Turner is a professor of national security communication at Michigan State University and an On-Air national security analyst for CNN. He recently completed a year-long special assignment serving as a senior advisor to the Secretary of Veterans Affairs. His previous government positions include serving as the Director of Communication for National Intelligence at the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, as Deputy White House Press Secretary for National Security, and as Deputy Press Secretary for Foreign Affairs for the National Security Council. Earlier in his career, Shawn served for 21 years in the United States Marine Corps. [Read full bio here]


Participants

Professor Max Abrahms

Associate Professor of Political Science and Public Policy, Northeastern University

Professor Anita Allen

Professor of Law and Philosophy, University of Pennsylvania

Professor Denis Baranger

Professor of Public Law, University of Paris-Panthéon-Assas

Professor Sigal Ben-Porath

Professor at the Graduate School of Education, University of Pennsylvania

Professor Vivian Berger

Nash Professor Emerita of Law, Columbia University

Ms. Jennifer Cohen

Director of Engagement, Center for Ethics and the Rule of Law

Mr. Joe Dangtran

2L Student, University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School

Mr. Patrick G. Eddington

Senior Fellow, Cato Institute

Mr. Marcus Ellinas

Political Science Student, University of Chicago

Mr. Mark Fallon

Director, ClubFed Strategic Services

Ms. Arlene Fickler

Partner, Schnader Harrison Segal & Lewis LLP

Professor Claire Finkelstein

Algernon Biddle Professor of Law and Professor of Philosophy

Faculty Director, Center for Ethics and the Rule of Law

Mr. John M. Geiringer

Regulatory Section Leader, Barack Ferrazzano Financial Institutions Group

Mr. Stuart Gerson

Member of the Firm, Epstein Becker Green

Capt. David A. Glinbizzi II

Captain, United States Army
M.A. Student, University of Pennsylvania in the Department of Philosophy

Dr. Morton H. Halperin 

Board Member, J Street Education Fund and of ONE
Chair of the Executive Board, Center for Ethics and the Rule of Law

Founder, Han Law, LLC

Professor Luke William Hunt

Philosophy Faculty, University of Alabama

Professor Jamil Jaffer

Founder and Executive Director, National Security Institute
Assistant Professor of Law, George Mason University

Ms. Emily Kaufman

Investigative Researcher, Anti-Defamation League Center on Extremism

Mr. David Joanson

Executive Director, Center for Ethics and the Rule of Law

Mr. Robert Kelner

Partner at Covington & Burling LLP

Professor Matthew Levendusky

Professor of Political Science, University of Pennsylvania

Professor Duncan MacIntosh

Professor of Philosophy, Dalhousie University

Mr. Ted McConnell

Executive Director, Campaign for the Civic Mission of Schools

Professor Mary McCord

Executive Director, Institute for Constitutional Advocacy and Protection
Visiting Professor of Law, Georgetown University Law Center

Professor Christopher Morris

Professor Emeritus of Philosophy, University of Maryland

Professor Lauren Ouziel

Professor of Law, Temple University Beasley School of Law

Dean Elizabeth Rindskopf Parker

Senior Advisor, CSIS Defending Democratic Institutions Project and Dean Emerita, University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law

Mr. Tom Parker

Project Coordinator, Counter-Terrorism Programming in the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) Country Office in Nigeria

Professor Gerald J. Postema

Boshamer Distinguished Professor of Philosophy, and Professor of Law, Emeritus, University of North Carolina


Dr. Dan Romer

Research Director, Annenberg Public Policy Center

Professor Connie Rosati

Professor of Philosophy, The University of Texas at Austin

Dr. Yoel Roth

Global Head of Safety & Integrity, Twitter

Mr. Ilya Rudyak

Senior Fellow, Center for Ethics and the Rule of Law

Major Roberto W. Santos

Major, United States Army

Mr. Oren Segal

Vice President, Center on Extremism

Professor Neil Shortland

Director for the Center for Terrorism and Security Studies (CTSS) at the University of Massachusetts Lowell Associate Professor, Department of Criminology and Criminal Justice, University of Massachusetts

Ms. Kathryn Stellato

Center Coordinator, Center for Ethics and the Rule of Law

Professor Shawn Turner

Professor of National Security Communication, Michigan State University

Ms. Sue Udry

Executive Director, Defending Rights & Dissent

Professor Stephen Woodside

Academy Professor of Philosophy, United States Military Academy

Brigadier General Steve Xenakis, MD

Advisor for Physicians for Human Rights and Center for Victims of Torture; Adjunct Professor, Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences

Mr. Moshe Yaffe

Constitutional Law Adjunct Professor, Academic Center of Law and Science in Israel, Adjunct Professor, Cardozo School of Law

Mr. Jules Zacher

Attorney, Jules Zacher, P.C.; Board Chair, Council for a Livable World

Required Readings

Conference registrants may access required readings. To gain access, please enter the password provided to you by the CERL conference team. If you have any trouble accessing the materials, please contact Jennifer Cohen (jenn.cohen@appc.upenn.edu). 

Suggested Readings

The views expressed in the documents below are those of their authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of CERL.

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Contact us

For questions regarding the conference, please contact: Ilya Rudyak, CERL Senior Fellow, at iru@pennlaw.upenn.edu.

For questions regarding logistics, please contact: Jennifer Cohen, CERL Director of Engagement, at jenn.cohen@appc.upenn.edu.

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Domestic Violent Extremism and the Threat to U.S. National Security