Jack Goldsmith

Senior Fellow
Biography: 

Jack Goldsmith is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution and the Henry L. Shattuck Professor of Law at Harvard University. From 2003 to 2004, he served as the assistant attorney general, Office of Legal Counsel; from 2002 to 2003 he served as the special counsel to the general counsel of the Department of Defense. Goldsmith also taught at the University of Chicago Law School from 1997 to 2002 and at the University of Virginia Law School from 1994 to 1997.

In his academic work, Goldsmith has written widely on issues related to national security law, presidential power, international law, and Internet regulation. His books include Power and Constraint: The Accountable Presidency after 9/11 (2012), The Terror Presidency: Law and Judgment inside the Bush Administration (2009), Who Controls the Internet: Illusions of a Borderless World (with Tim Wu) (2006), and The Limits of International Law (with Eric Posner) (2005). He blogs on national security matters at the Lawfare blog,and on issues of labor law and policy at the On Labor blog.

Goldsmith is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He holds a JD from Yale Law School, a BA and an MA from Oxford University, and a BA from Washington & Lee University. He clerked for Supreme Court justice Anthony M. Kennedy, Court of Appeals judge J. Harvie Wilkinson, and Judge George Aldrich on the Iran-US Claims Tribunal.

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Recent Commentary

Nuclear Weapons
Blogs

Who’s Afraid Of The Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act Of 2015?

by Jack Goldsmithvia Lawfare
Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Last Friday The Hill reported that Senator Corker believes he “will have a veto-proof majority” to enact the “Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act of 2015” (INARA).

Blogs

Was The Bergdahl Swap Lawful?

by Jack Goldsmithvia Lawfare
Wednesday, March 25, 2015

With Bowe Bergdahl back in the news, it is perhaps worth outlining the legally controversial circumstances of the Taliban swap.

Featured Commentary

The Precise (And Narrow) Limits On U.S. Economic Espionage

by Jack Goldsmithvia Lawfare
Monday, March 23, 2015

This Intercept story on New Zealand’s surveillance of candidates for director general of the World Trade Organization sparked a related conversation yesterday on twitter about the exact scope of U.S. economic espionage.

Blogs

Letter From Heads Of SFRC And SASC To Kerry And Carter On South China Sea

by Jack Goldsmithvia Lawfare
Friday, March 20, 2015

Yesterday the Chairmen and Ranking members of the Senate Armed Services Committee (McCain and Reed) and the Senate Foreign Relations Committee (Corker and Menendez) sent a noteworthy letter to Secretaries Kerry and Carter about growing Chinese hegemony in the South China Sea.

Featured Commentary

Why The AUMF For The Islamic State Has Stalled

by Jack Goldsmithvia Lawfare
Friday, March 20, 2015

“Congress is stalled in its effort to pass a separate resolution authorizing military force against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant,” write Austin Wright and Bryan Bender in a good Politico story two days ago.

Blogs

New Book On Islamic State By Stern And Berger

by Jack Goldsmithvia Lawfare
Thursday, March 19, 2015

Jessica Stern (who wrote Terror in the Name of God: Why Religious Militants Kill) and J.M. Berger have a new book that should be of interest to Lawfare readers: ISIS: The State of Terror.

Blogs

The Supreme Court’s Lurking Relevance To The Iran Deal

by Jack Goldsmithvia Lawfare
Monday, March 16, 2015

The Supreme Court will decide the Jerusalem passport case, Zivotofsky, sometime between now and late June.

Nuclear Weapons
Blogs

Four Thoughts On Denis Mcdonough’s Letter To Senator Corker On The Iran Deal

by Jack Goldsmithvia Lawfare
Sunday, March 15, 2015

President Obama’s Chief of Staff, Denis McDonough, has written a good response to Senator Corker’s letter to the President on the Iran nuclear deal.

US-Iran Relations
Blogs

The State Of Play On The Form And Effect Of The (Possible) Iran Deal

by Jack Goldsmithvia Lawfare
Friday, March 13, 2015

Every day brings a new and different story about the Obama administration’s plans with regard to a possible deal with Iran as it relates to domestic and international law.

Barack Obama
Featured Commentary

The State Of Play On The Form And Effect Of The (Possible) Iran Deal

by Jack Goldsmithvia Lawfare
Friday, March 13, 2015

Every day brings a new and different story about the Obama administration’s plans with regard to a possible deal with Iran as it relates to domestic and international law.

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