Panel to Address the Future of Guantanamo, Jan. 28

Jan. 23, 2009

Event: The Robert S. Strauss Center for International Security and Law will host the panel discussion "The Post-Guantanamo Era: A Dialogue on the Law and Policy of Detention and Counterterrorism" at The University of Texas at Austin. This event is free and open to the public.

When: Jan. 28, 5:30 to 7 p.m.

Where: The Eidman Courtroom, Connally Center for Justice, at the School of Law. Maps and directions are available online.

Background: What does the future hold for Guantanamo? The Obama administration faces many challenges, but few that are more complicated and politically loaded than the task of reforming the government's approach to military detention in general and the Guantanamo detainees in particular.

The Strauss Center has arranged for a panel of distinguished experts to discuss these questions: John Bellinger, who was legal adviser to the secretary of state and to the National Security Council during the Bush Administration; Benjamin Wittes of the Brookings Institute, author of the book "Law and the Long War: The Future of Justice in Age of Terror"; and Steven Vladeck, professor of law at American University and co-author of a brief to the Supreme Court on behalf of Guantanamo detainee Salim Hamdan.

Professor Bobby Chesney, a Strauss Center fellow and visiting professor of law at the School of Law, will lead the experts in a discussion of the legal and policy issues raised by Guantanamo. A question-and-answer session will follow.

This discussion is particularly timely and relevant given President Barack Obama's order on Thursday, Jan. 22—his second day in office—to close the U.S. prison for suspected terrorists at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, within a year. On the same day, the president also ordered a review of detention policy in general and banned the harshest interrogation methods.

C-Span is scheduled to record the panel discussion for broadcast at a later date. In addition, the event will be recorded by the Law School and available for viewing on the Web sites of the Strauss Center and the School of Law a few days after the event.

For more information, contact: Laura Castro, director of media relations, School of Law, 512-825-9525 (cell); Professor Bobby Chesney, School of Law and Strauss Center for International Security and Law, 512-232-1298.