Recent events have put governmental secrecy in the news and enhanced the scrutiny of classification practices. During the Bush Administration, for example, a series of secret legal memoranda authorized the use of enhanced interrogation techniques against terror suspects. These formed a key component of the Bush administration’s counterterrorism strategy. With the Obama Administration, clandestine legal memoranda have sought to justify the use of targeted killing, and one particularly controversial memo authorized the killing of an American citizen, Anwar al-Alawki. The contents of the latter have not been made public, though pressure is mounting for its release. Even the criteria by which a target is placed on the targeted killing list (the “Joint Prioritized Effects List” (JPEL)) remain confidential.
With the pressures of the ongoing War on Terror, major policies and legal questions of national importance have become less and less open to public view. The increase in secrecy is not without costs, as there appears to be a tradeoff between the need for effective security and the value of transparency. On the one hand, as Immanuel Kant wrote, “every claim to right must have this capacity for publicity.” John Rawls has echoed this same sentiment in requiring publicity as a condition of the social contract. On the other hand, effective national security crucially depends on the State’s ability to control the flow of information. This Roundtable will consider whether the expanding use of secrecy in governmental practices is desirable, and, most crucially, whether it is consistent with rule of law values.
|FRIDAY MAY 18
|8:30 – 9:00 a.m.
|9:00 – 10:30 a.m.
|Session 1: Foundational Questions
|10:30 – 11:00 a.m.
|11:00 – 12:30 p.m.
|Session 2: Philosophical Writings on Publicity Conditions
|12:30 – 1:30 p.m.
|1:30 – 3:30 p.m.
|Transportation to Chestnut Hill
|4:30 – 6:00 p.m.
|Session 3: Classification and Executive Privilege (at the home of Claire Finkelstein)
|Cocktails and Dinner
|SATURDAY MAY 19
|9:00 – 9:30 a.m.
|9:30 – 11:00 a.m.
|Session 4: Secrecy and Military Operations
|11:00 – 11:30 a.m.
|11:30 – 1:00 p.m.
|Session 5: Secrecy and Civil Rights
|1:00 – 2:00 p.m.
|2:00 – 3:30 p.m.
|Session 6: Looking Forward: A World of Secret Laws
Deputy Dean and Professor of Law University of Pennsylvania Law School
Academica Administrator Institute for Law and Philosophy, University of Pennsylvania
Chairman of Federal Systems Norristonw, NJ Richard Meyer Assistant Professor Department of Law, United States Military Academy, West Point
Executive Director Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press
Professor of Philosophy University of Maryland
Professor of Philosophy York University
Associate Professor of Law Cornell University Law School
Algernon Biddle Professor of Law and Professor of Philosophy University of Pennsylvania Law School
Associate Professor of Law New York University School of Law
Sharswood Fellow in Law and International Affairs University of Pennsylvania Law School
Associate Professor of Philosophy The University of Arizona
Associate Professor of Law Ave Maria School of Law
Director of Penn’s Institute for Strategic Threat Analyis and Response (ISTAR), and Associate Dean for Student Affairs in the School of Medicine University of Pennsylvania
Contributing Editor – Harper’s Magazine Lecturer-in-Law Columbia Law School
Open Government Legal Fellow Electronic Frontier Foundation
Director of National Security Project Litigator American Civil Liberties Union
Professor of Law University of San Diego School of Law
Professor of Law UC Berkeley School of Law
Ernst C. Stiefel Professor of Comparative Law New York Law School
Associate Professor of Law Georgetown Law School
Associate Professor of Law Columbia Law School
W. St. John Garwood and W. St. John Garwood, Jr. Centennial Chair, Professor of Government The University of Texas at Austin School of Law Jules Zacher Boardmember- Council For a Livable World Attorney-at-Law
Professor of Philosophy, Law and Political Science University of Southern California
ICREA Research Professor Universitat Pompeu Fabra
For any questions regarding the conference or registration, please contact: Jennifer Cohen at firstname.lastname@example.org