• The Heritage Network
    • Resize:
    • A
    • A
    • A
  • Donate
  • Koh Update: Questions for Koh

    The Washington Independent‘s David Weigel has a very fair piece on conservative efforts to educate the public about  State Department legal advisor nominee Harold Koh’s “transnationalist” legal beliefs. Weigel quotes National Review’s Ed Whelan: “What judicial transnationalism is really all about is depriving American citizens of their powers of representative government by selectively imposing on them the favored policies of Europe’s leftist elites.”

    Also engaging Koh’s substantive views, former Koh student Julian Ku who has identified 10 Questions for Koh at Opinio Juris, including:

    2) You have argued in your writings that transnational legal processes can and should be used to develop and eventually “bring international law home” to have binding force within the U.S. legal system. Do you think it is appropriate as Legal Advisor to support such efforts to use litigation to incorporate international legal norms within U.S. law?

    4) You have written vigorously in defense of the view that customary international law has the status of federal common law within the U.S. legal system. Do you therefore also believe that the President has the power to invoke CIL to preempt state law, as some scholars have suggested?

    10) Recently, universal jurisdiction has been invoked in Spain to potentially prosecute six officials from the Bush administration for giving legal advice that allegedly sanctioned torture. Universal jurisdiction has also been the basis for or potential prosecutions of Israeli officials involved in military operations in the Gaza Strip. Given your past advocacy of transnational legal processes and the invocation of universal jurisdiction in the United States under the Alien Tort Statute, do you believe it is appropriate for Spain to open that investigation into U.S. officials? At what point would it be appropriate for the United States to protest such an investigation?

    Read the whole thing.

    Posted in Legal [slideshow_deploy]

    4 Responses to Koh Update: Questions for Koh

    1. Tami, Nashville says:

      Along comes another incident that underlines how we give up our national sovereignty and our laws under the Constitution. Most people, unfortunately, in this oncoming generation do not even know what democracy and socialism is…just see the latest Rasmussin poll. They don't know what goes on in the dead of night while they sleep blissfully unaware in their comfortable beds. America was founded on a representative/republic form of government in order to be rid of tyranny and global involvement in its livelihood. We are handing over our liberties and our humanity to a global community who is not concerned at all for the welfare of a country that supplies definition of freedom. Folks, you better take care while you sleep…you are being handed over and will lose much. My family, who has bled much over the last 400 years to evolve and perpetuate freedom for these United States are tossing in their graves, no doubt!

    2. Joe McCann, Converse says:

      Does Mr. Koh not know or understand the Constitution? To subject Americans to "Transnationalism" would be the same as tearing up the Constitution and giving up our Sovereignty. I for one would not want to live under a system that gives the government such control over our lives nor would I want that for our posterity.

    3. Tami,Nashville says:

      Amen, brother Joe. And our executive/CEO of the White House is doing just this…taking control as the all-knowing power and shredding our freedoms. This is the prescription of Karl Marx himself. And half the population of the US is blissfully following unaware. And I am not sure there is any rousing them from their deep slumber. They are following the lie as they follow the brass ring. They would follow him and this Congress to h..l.

    4. Jaan, Tallinn, Eston says:

      Seems that your problems are beginning. Here in Estonia we have a unique 'boys club' as politicians who have the gall to internationally proclaim their 'acheivements' whilst the people suffer and die waiting for the freedom, rule of law and democracy that the government proclaims exists.

      I refer to the article 'The Estonian Economic Miracle' by the (coff, coff) Honorable Mart Laar (published 7 Aug.2007 in the backgrounder, published by The Heritage Foundation.

      The specific sections titled "Rule of Law" and "Property Reform" are absolute and total misrepresentations of the truth (common for Estonian politicians).

      For over 17 years thousands of Estonian citizens have and still are suffering serious hardship and emotional distress as a direct result of the Estonian government's refusal to resolve the issues involving property Reform.

      Broad violations of human rights and constitutional laws are being committed by the politicians who place their ambitions above the wellfare of the people they are elected to serve and this extends through to the courts.

      We inherited this totalitarian legacy as a replacement for communism, the US it seems likes this role model; and why not? after all the politicians can become rich and powerful.

    Comments are subject to approval and moderation. We remind everyone that The Heritage Foundation promotes a civil society where ideas and debate flourish. Please be respectful of each other and the subjects of any criticism. While we may not always agree on policy, we should all agree that being appropriately informed is everyone's intention visiting this site. Profanity, lewdness, personal attacks, and other forms of incivility will not be tolerated. Please keep your thoughts brief and avoid ALL CAPS. While we respect your first amendment rights, we are obligated to our readers to maintain these standards. Thanks for joining the conversation.

    Big Government Is NOT the Answer

    Your tax dollars are being spent on programs that we really don't need.

    I Agree I Disagree ×

    Get Heritage In Your Inbox — FREE!

    Heritage Foundation e-mails keep you updated on the ongoing policy battles in Washington and around the country.