Director's Note

Spring 2013 Insights—Director’s Note


War has played a central part in American history, but has especially been part of our culture for the past decade. War is many things, not the least of all a legal matter. This issue of Insights will explore the relationship between law and war.


This issue opens with an article from Mary Dudziak (Emory University School of Law), which explores the concept of “wartime” and its implications for law and national security. In a second article, Ganesh Sitaraman (Vanderbilt University Law School) discusses the counterinsurgency strategies that have become common references in today’s newsmedia, and how they are connected to the rule of law. Then, in “Verdict of Battle,” James Q. Whitman (Yale Law School) clearly and thoughtfully outlines how battlefields have changed from discrete spaces with clear winners to seemingly boundless spaces without any victory. He reflects on the increasing role of international humanitarian law in this shift. Each feature article also includes Learning Gateways, offering useful, strategies to help connect this to your classroom. 


In addition, Teaching Legal Docs takes a look at peace treaties, which often formally end wars;  while Perspectives features experts who build on the arguments about the legal distinction between wartime and peacetime. The Law Review department features an article from Jonathan Hafetz (Seton Hall University School of Law), who outlines the complexities of holding corporations legally responsible for human rights violations of their contractors. Rounding out the issue, we Profile the Korematsu Institute for Civil Rights and Education with a special extended interview with Karen Korematsu.


Remember that the magazine doesn’t stop with these pages.  Check out the rich roundup of resources online at The website offers teachers additional instructional supports, including articles, lessons, and primary sources, and opportunities for continued discussion.


We continue to benefit from your feedback and ideas of the magazine, so keep them coming to our editor or me.   Let us know about topics that you would like to see us tackle in future issues, and innovative classroom strategies that you have initiated to bring content alive for your students.





Mabel McKinney-Browning  



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Insights on Law and Society is edited by Tiffany Middleton. She can be reached at