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The Lawfare Podcast

100 EpisodesProduced by The Lawfare InstituteWebsite

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 oth… read more

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Nina Jankowicz on 'How to Lose the Information War'

September 24th, 2020


This week on Lawfare's Arbiters of Truth miniseries on disinformation, Evelyn Douek and Quinta Jurecic spoke to Nina Jankowicz, a disinformation fellow at the Wilson Center, about her new book: “How to Lose the …

Portland, DHS and the Rule of Law

September 23rd, 2020


Bobby Chesney sat down with former Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson and Texas Congressman Chip Roy as part of the 2020 Texas Tribune …

Detention Questions and the Women of the Islamic State

September 22nd, 2020


It’s not something that gets a lot of attention in American news outlets, but there remain large numbers of women and children linked with the …

Elizabeth Neumann and Kathleen Belew on White Power Violence

September 21st, 2020


Elizabeth Neumann served as the assistant secretary for threat prevention and security policy at the Department of Homeland Security. She has …

Goldsmith and Bauer on 'After Trump'

September 18th, 2020


"After Trump: Reconstructing the Presidency," a new book published by Lawfare, is a look at the manner in which Donald Trump has disrupted the presidency across a range of areas, as well as a series of proposals for …

Congress's Control Over the Military

September 17th, 2020


In recent years, Congress has taken unprecedented steps to push back against the Trump administration's efforts to pull U.S. troops from certain …

The Spymasters with Chris Whipple

September 16th, 2020


What is the proper relationship between the CIA director and the president? How should directors handle arguably illegal orders? How important is the …

Alina Polyakova on the Poisoning of Alexei Navalny

September 15th, 2020


Alexei Navalny is Russia's most prominent dissident, opposition leader and anti-corruption crusader—and the latest such person to be poisoned by the Vladimir Putin regime, which, of course, it denies. When we recorded …

Mike Schmidt on Stopping a President

September 14th, 2020


Michael S. Schmidt is a reporter for The New York Times, a reporter who broke a number of key stories during the Russia investigation. He is most recently the author of "Donald Trump v. The United States: Inside the …

Pete Strzok on 'Compromised'

September 11th, 2020


Peter Strzok served in the FBI from 1996 to 2018 and eventually became the deputy head of the counterintelligence division, where he supervised, among other things, the Russia investigation, both at the FBI and later …

Ben Nimmo on the Return of the Internet Research Agency

September 10th, 2020


This week on Lawfare's Arbiters of Truth series on disinformation, Alina Polyakova and Quinta Jurecic spoke with Ben Nimmo, the director of …

Cheap Fakes on the Campaign Trail

September 9th, 2020


It was a big week for manipulated video and audio content. In just 36 hours, senior republicans or people associated with the Trump campaign tweeted, …

Everything You Wanted to Know About the Hatch Act But Were Afraid to Ask

September 8th, 2020


The Hatch Act has been in the news a lot recently, between the Republican National Convention's use of the White House grounds and Secretary Pompeo's decision to address the Convention from an official trip in …

A Busy Week at the DC Circuit

September 4th, 2020


It was a big week for the DC Circuit Court of Appeals who handed down opinions in two cases involving former presidential White House advisors. The …

Alissa Starzak on Cloudflare, Content Moderation and the Internet Stack

September 3rd, 2020


This week on Lawfare's Arbiters of Truth series on disinformation, Evelyn Douek and Quinta Jurecic spoke with Alissa Starzak, the head of public …

Briefings Schmiefings

September 2nd, 2020


Last week, Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe informed Congress that elections security briefings in the run-up to the 2020 election …

Election Anxieties and the U.S. Postal Service with Kevin Kosar and Anne Joseph O’Connell

September 1st, 2020


On August 13, President Trump said in a news interview that he opposed supplemental funding for the United States Postal Service because such funding is needed for the delivery of universal mail-in ballots for the 2020 …

Trade War Powers: Past, Present and Future

August 31st, 2020


Earlier this month, the Trump administration re-imposed tariffs on aluminum imports from Canada, signaling a new salvo in the now years-long trade war it has been waging with countless U.S. trading partners. But what …

"What’s Going on at Pompeo’s State Department?" with Nahal Toosi and Scott Anderson

August 28th, 2020


In mid-May, President Trump fired the State Department Inspector General Steve Linick. The ouster came as a surprise, and although it is clear that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo asked Trump to fire him, the reasons …

Emma Llansó on the Most Important Content Moderation Database You’ve Never Heard Of

August 27th, 2020


This week on Lawfare's Arbiters of Truth series on disinformation, Evelyn Douek and Quinta Jurecic spoke with Emma Llansó, the director of the Free …

Yemen's Ongoing Tragedy

August 26th, 2020


Yemen is home to the most tragic circumstances imaginable right now—years upon years of war, environmental disasters and severe humanitarian plight, …

Harold Holzer on 'The Presidents vs. the Press'

August 25th, 2020


Jack Goldsmith spoke with Harold Holzer, director of the Roosevelt House Public Policy Institute at Hunter College, about his new book, "The …

The State of the U.S.-China Relationship

August 24th, 2020


In recent months, relations between the United States and China seem to have reached a new low as disagreements over trade, tech, human rights and the coronavirus have led the two sides to exchange increasingly harsh …

The Senate Intelligence Committee, the 2016 Campaign and the Counterintelligence Threat

August 21st, 2020


The Senate Select Committee on Intelligence has released the final counterintelligence volume of its extensive report related to many aspects of the …

Alex Stamos on Fighting Election Disinformation in Real Time

August 20th, 2020


This week on Lawfare's Arbiters of Truth series on disinformation, Evelyn Douek and Quinta Jurecic spoke with Alex Stamos, the director of the Stanford Internet Observatory and former chief security officer of Yahoo and …

Scott Anderson and Richard Gowan on the Disagreement in the Security Council on the Snapback of UN Sanctions on Iran

August 19th, 2020


Late last week, the UN Security Council voted down a resolution, offered by the United States, to indefinitely extend a conventional arms embargo on …

Manipulating Intelligence Then and Now with Robert Draper

August 18th, 2020


President Trump's relationship with the intelligence community is back in the news again after allegations that his administration manipulated an …

A Surprise UAE-Israel Deal

August 17th, 2020


In a surprise announcement last week, the United Arab Emirates and Israel are normalizing relations, and Israel is putting on hold its plans for …

Adam Jentleson and Molly Reynolds on Getting Rid of the Senate Filibuster

August 14th, 2020


On July 30, former President Barack Obama, speaking at the funeral of Congressman John Lewis, threw his weight behind ending the Senate filibuster if …

Shane Huntley on Countering Digital Threats at Google

August 13th, 2020


This week on Lawfare's Arbiters of Truth series on disinformation, Alina Polyakova and Quinta Jurecic spoke with Shane Huntley, the director of …

Trump Takes Aim at TikTok and WeChat

August 12th, 2020


President Trump recently issued executive orders aimed at banning TikTok and WeChat from operating in the United States. To discuss the sanction, Bobby Chesney sat down with Dr. Sheena Chestnut Greitens, an associate …

The McGahn Decision and Proxy Voting

August 11th, 2020


Last week, the DC Circuit Court of Appeals in Washington handed down a major en banc decision on the question of whether the president's former White House Counsel, Don McGahn, even needs to show up in response to a …

Jim Sciutto on Trump and 'The Madman Theory'

August 10th, 2020


During the Vietnam War, Richard Nixon employed an unusual scare tactic in his efforts to reach a withdrawal—he led Vietnam to believe he was crazy enough to start a nuclear war, an approach he described as the madman …

Chad Wolf vs. the Committee with No Bull

August 7th, 2020


Acting Secretary of Homeland Security Chad Wolf testified before the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee on Thursday. He was …

Ben Collins and Brandy Zadrozny Explain QAnon

August 6th, 2020


This week on Lawfare's Arbiters of Truth series on disinformation, Evelyn Douek and Quinta Jurecic spoke with Ben Collins and Brandy Zadrozny, …

DHS Compiles Intelligence on Journalists … Including our Editor-In-Chief

August 5th, 2020


“What if J. Edgar Hoover Had Been a Moron?” That’s the question Lawfare’s editor-in-chief Benjamin Wittes asks in a new article about his experience learning that his tweets had been written up in an intelligence report …

Michel Paradis on 'Last Mission to Tokyo'

August 3rd, 2020


Michel Paradis is a scholar of international law and human rights who has worked for more than a decade for the U.S. Department of Defense Military …

Pompeo vs. the Committee with No Bull

July 31st, 2020


Secretary of State Mike Pompeo testified before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Thursday. Pompeo was asked about the threats posed by China and Russia, the decision to withdraw 12,000 U.S. troops from Germany, …

Jillian C. York on Free Expression on a Broken Internet

July 30th, 2020


This week on Lawfare's Arbiters of Truth series on disinformation, Kate Klonick and Quinta Jurecic spoke with Jillian C. York, the director for International Freedom of Expression at the Electronic Frontier Foundation. …

Barr vs. the Committee with No Bull

July 29th, 2020


Attorney General William Barr testified before the House Judiciary Committee on Tuesday. Barr was asked about the federal government's response to protests, the upcoming presidential election, the dismissal of former …

What to Do With Detained Islamic State Fighters in Iraq and Syria

July 28th, 2020


For a while, there have been large numbers of alleged former Islamic State state fighters and affiliates detained by the Iraqi government and by autonomous authorities in Syria. The fate of these detainees—and the more …

Anne Applebaum on the Twilight of Democracy

July 27th, 2020


Anne Applebaum is a columnist, writer, historian and most recently, the author of "Twilight of Democracy: The Seductive Lore of Authoritarianism," a …

How Corruption Works in China

July 24th, 2020


Why has modern China prospered in spite of vast corruption? On this episode of ChinaTalk, Jordan Schneider talks with Yuen Yuen Ang, associate …

Hany Farid on Deep Fakes, Doctored Photos and Disinformation

July 23rd, 2020


This week on Lawfare's Arbiters of Truth series on disinformation, Evelyn Douek and Quinta Jurecic spoke with Hany Farid, a professor at the University of California, Berkeley, whose work focuses on analyzing and …

Schrems II and the Future of Transatlantic Data

July 22nd, 2020


Last week, the European Court of Justice released its much awaited decision in Data Protection Commissioner v Maximilian Schrems, commonly known as Schrems II, which addressed which privacy requirements governments and …

The Expanded Intelligence Activities of the Department of Homeland Security

July 21st, 2020


Yesterday, Lawfare published an article revealing and analyzing a document from the Department of Homeland Security that offers legal guidance to analysts in its Office of Intelligence and Analysis regarding the …

The Forgotten War Remembered

July 20th, 2020


This year marks the 70th anniversary of the beginning of the Korean War. Though often called the "Forgotten War," the Korean War has highly …

John Allen and Darrell West on Artificial Intelligence

July 17th, 2020


Darrell West is vice president of the Brookings Institution and director of Governance Studies at Brookings. John Allen is the president of the Brookings Institution and a retired U.S. Marine Corps four-star general. …

Jane Lytvynenko on Debunking the Disinformation Garbage Fire

July 16th, 2020


This week on our Arbiters of Truth series on disinformation, Evelyn Douek and Quinta Jurecic spoke with Jane Lytvynenko, a senior reporter at …

A Deep Dive on China and the Uighurs

July 15th, 2020


We talk a lot about Chinese policy in Hong Kong, but there's another human rights crisis going on in China in the province of Xinjiang. It concerns …

David Rohde on the Supposed "Deep State"

July 14th, 2020


In a 2018 poll, 74 percent of Americans said they believed that some group of unelected government and military officials was definitely or probably …

COVID-19 and its National Security Implications in the Middle East, South Asia and Africa

July 13th, 2020


You've heard a lot about COVID-19 and its effects in the United States, China and East Asia, Europe and Brazil. But what about the Middle East, South Asia and Africa? The virus is hitting these regions hard with …

The Subpoena Cases Come Down

July 10th, 2020


Yesterday, the Supreme Court, on the final day of its term, handed down the two big subpoena cases: Trump v. Vance, in which the president tried to beat back a subpoena from a New York grand jury, and Trump v. Mazars …

Brandi Collins-Dexter on COVID-19 Misinformation and Black Communities

July 9th, 2020


In this episode of our Arbiters of Truth series on disinformation, Evelyn Douek and Quinta Jurecic spoke with Brandi Collins-Dexter, the senior …

Xinjiang, Hong Kong and China

July 8th, 2020


The protests in Hong Kong have grabbed international headlines, but Hong Kong is hardly the only region of China that is experiencing brutal repression from the Chinese Communist Party. The latest unrest in the city and …

David Priess on the History of the President's Daily Brief

July 7th, 2020


David Priess is the chief operating officer of the Lawfare Institute. He is also a former CIA briefer for the Attorney General and the FBI director, …

Chris Brose on 'The Kill Chain'

July 6th, 2020


Christian Brose was the staff director of the Senate Armed Services Committee, and he was also John McCain's senior policy adviser. He now works as …

David Shimer on "Rigged"

July 3rd, 2020


Jack Goldsmith spoke with David Shimer, the author of "Rigged: America, Russia and 100 Years of Covert Electoral Interference." They discussed United …

Darius Kazemi on The Great Bot Panic

July 2nd, 2020


On this episode of our Arbiters of Truth series on disinformation, Evelyn Douek and Quinta Jurecic spoke with Darius Kazemi, an internet artist and bot-maker extraordinaire. Recently, there have been a lot of ominous …

Taking China to Court Over the Coronavirus

July 1st, 2020


As the United States continues to suffer from the effects of the coronavirus, the controversy surrounding China's alleged role in the pandemic has …

About Those Russian Bounties

June 30th, 2020


The New York Times and Washington Post both report that a Russian intelligence unit is paying bounties to Taliban-affiliated militants for killing …

Eric Posner on ‘The Demagogue's Playbook'

June 29th, 2020


Jack Goldsmith sat down with Eric Posner, the Kirkland & Ellis Distinguished Service Professor of Law at the University of Chicago, and the …

Hong Kong’s Protests One Year On

June 26th, 2020


Jordan Schneider, the host of ChinaTalk, sat down with Antony Dapiran, Hong Kong-based lawyer and author of two books on protests in Hong Kong. They discussed the history and legacy of the 2019 protests on the …

Whitney Phillips and Ryan Milner on Our Polluted Information Environment

June 25th, 2020


In this episode of our Arbiters of Truth series on disinformation, Evelyn Douek and Quinta Jurecic spoke with Whitney Phillips and Ryan Milner, authors of the new book, “You Are Here: A Field Guide for Navigating …

Election Meltdown Update

June 24th, 2020


COVID-19 is still rampaging around the country, primaries in several states did not go as planned, and, of course, there are Russians lurking in the background. With all of this happening around us, what is going to …

Glenn Kessler on Donald Trump's Assault on Truth

June 23rd, 2020


Glenn Kessler is the head of the Fact Checker staff of the Washington Post. Along with Salvador Rizzo and Meg Kelly, he is the author of the new …

John Bolton’s Book is Out of the Barn

June 22nd, 2020


Former National Security Advisor John Bolton's White House memoir, titled “The Room Where it Happened,” has made a lot of waves recently. Not only …

Mira Rapp-Hooper on 'Shields of the Republic'

June 19th, 2020


Dr. Mira Rapp-Hooper is the Stephen A. Schwarzman senior fellow for Asia studies at the Council on Foreign Relations and author of the new book, "Shields of the Republic: The Triumph and Peril of America's Alliances." …

Laura Rosenberger on Chinese Information Operations

June 18th, 2020


On this episode of Lawfare's Arbiters of Truth series on disinformation, Alina Polyakova and Quinta Jurecic spoke with Laura Rosenberger, the …

Norm Ornstein and John Fortier on the Continuity of Government

June 17th, 2020


Molly Reynolds spoke with Norm Ornstein of the American Enterprise Institute and John Fortier of the Bipartisan Policy Center about the Continuity of …

Lawrence Douglas on Presidential Election Concessions

June 16th, 2020


The 2020 presidential election is less than five months away. As the election inches closer and closer, concerns have grown about the possibility …

Patrick Skinner on Warrior Cops and Neighborhood Policing

June 15th, 2020


Patrick Skinner is a police officer in Savannah, Georgia, who brings diverse experience to that job. He served as a case officer at the Central …

Evan Osnos on Tiananmen and Lafayette

June 12th, 2020


ChinaTalk is the newest member of the Lawfare Podcast family, and its impresario, Jordan Schneider, does a wide range of interviews related to China's economy and security. In this episode, Jordan interviews Evan Osnos …

Eileen Donahoe on Protecting Free Expression Online

June 11th, 2020


On this episode of our Arbiters of Truth series on disinformation, Alina Polyakova and Quinta Jurecic spoke with Eileen Donahoe, the Executive …

David Frum on Trumpocalypse

June 10th, 2020


David Frum is one of the most prominent and eloquent conservative critics of the president. The former George W. Bush speechwriter and current writer for The Atlantic has written "Trumpocalypse: Restoring American …

Congressional Overspeech with Josh Chafetz

June 9th, 2020


High profile congressional hearings, like the 2015 Benghazi hearings, the 2019 Mueller Report hearings and most recently, the Ukraine impeachment …

The Trump Administration’s Latest Moves to Dismantle the Iran Nuclear Agreement with Peter Harrell and Richard Nephew

June 8th, 2020


On May 27, the Trump administration announced that it was withdrawing sanctions waivers that had allowed Russian, Chinese and European companies to work with Iran on sensitive Iranian nuclear sites in support of the …

Covert Action, Regime Change and International Law with Michael Poznansky

June 5th, 2020


We normally think of international law as constraining leaders' actions, especially aggression toward other countries. But what if one effect of an established international principle actually spurs more covert action …

Ryan Merkley on Why Wikipedia Works

June 4th, 2020


In this episode of our Arbiters of Truth series on disinformation, Evelyn Douek and Quinta Jurecic spoke with Ryan Merkley, the chief of staff to the executive director of the Wikimedia Foundation. We’ve spent a lot of …

Rashawn Ray on Police Violence

June 3rd, 2020


Dr. Rashawn Ray is a David M. Rubenstein fellow in Governance Studies at the Brookings Institution. He's also an associate professor of sociology at …

On the Brink with the Insurrection Act

June 2nd, 2020


The president is threatening to designate Antifa as a terrorist organization. This evening, he appears to have ordered a tear gas attack on peaceful …

Bart Gellman on 'Dark Mirror'

June 1st, 2020


Journalist Bart Gellman is the author of the new book, "Dark Mirror: Edward Snowden and the American Surveillance State." Jack Goldsmith sat down …

Eli Lake Makes the Case for Flynn

May 29th, 2020


Eli Lake is a columnist for Bloomberg and the author of a recent article in Commentary magazine on the case of Michael Flynn. In that article, he …

Gabrielle Lim on the Life and Death of Malaysia's Anti-Fake News Act

May 28th, 2020


In this episode of Lawfare's Arbiters of Truth series on disinformation, Evelyn Douek and Quinta Jurecic spoke with Gabrielle Lim, a researcher with …

Hong Kong Erupts

May 27th, 2020


Hong Kong protesters are out in the streets once again, as the Beijing legislature contemplates a new national security law for the city, and the Hong Kong legislature considers a bill to make it a crime to disrespect …

The SpaceX Launch and the Future of Space Law

May 26th, 2020


On Wednesday, NASA and the SpaceX Corporation are scheduled to send astronauts back into outer space from U.S. soil for the first time since the U.S. …

Steve Teles on 'Never Trump'

May 23rd, 2020


Steven Teles is the author of a new book with Robert P. Saldin, "Never Trump: The Revolt of the Conservative Elites." Benjamin Wittes spoke with …

Deen Freelon on Why Black Trolls Matter

May 21st, 2020


This week on Lawfare's Arbiters of Truth series on disinformation, Evelyn Douek and Quinta Jurecic spoke with Deen Freelon, an associate professor at …

Trump and his Predecessors with Kate Andersen Brower

May 20th, 2020


There may not be many laws governing how former presidents should interact with the current commander-in-chief, or with each other, or how the …

Firing Inspectors General

May 19th, 2020


President Trump on Friday fired the inspector general of the State Department. It was the fourth time he had fired or removed an inspector general in …

David Kaye on Free Speech During a Pandemic

May 16th, 2020


The global pandemic has raised searching questions about the relationship between a public health emergency and free speech. Jack Goldsmith sat down …

Global Trade and Investment in the Coronavirus Era

May 15th, 2020


The global coronavirus pandemic has changed the way different corners of the world interact with each other, perhaps forever. Nowhere is this more true than the global economy, where a decade's long trend toward the …

Craig Silverman on Real Reporting on Fake News

May 14th, 2020


On this week's episode of Lawfare's Arbiters of Truth series on disinformation, Evelyn Douek spoke with Craig Silverman, the media editor for Buzzfeed News and one of the leading journalists covering the disinformation …

Elizabeth Shackelford on 'The Dissent Channel'

May 13th, 2020


Scott R. Anderson sat down with Elizabeth Shackelford, a former foreign service officer whose late 2017 resignation became a sign of growing discontent with the Trump administration within the diplomatic corps. They …

The President's Tax Returns and the Supreme Court

May 12th, 2020


The Supreme Court today held arguments in a blockbuster case. Do the Trump tax returns and associated financial documents at firms like Mazars and Deutsche Bank need to be turned over in response to congressional …

'Unmaking the Presidency'

May 10th, 2020


From the moment of his inauguration, Trump has challenged our deepest expectations of the presidency. But what are those expectations? Where did they come from, and how great is the damage? "Unmaking the Presidency: …

Dropping the Flynn Case

May 9th, 2020


The Justice Department moved this week to dismiss the charges against Michael Flynn, a man who had pled guilty to lying to the FBI. It was an extraordinary move, one that provoked glee among the president's supporters …

Tony Mills on Congress's Institutional Limitations in Responding to the Coronavirus

May 8th, 2020


Margaret Taylor sat down with Tony Mills, director of science policy at the R Street Institute, to talk about an article he recently wrote with …

Aric Toler on How Not to Report on Disinformation

May 7th, 2020


For this week's episode of our Arbiters of Truth series on disinformation, Evelyn Douek and Alina Polyakova talked to Aric Toler of Bellingcat, a …

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