Vanderbilt University professor Ganesh Sitaraman will deliver the 2013 IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law/Roy C. Palmer Civil Liberties Prize Lecture
"The Counterinsurgent's Constitution: Law in the Age of Small Wars" is the topic of the November 21 lecture
October 24, 2013
Vanderbilt University professor Ganesh Sitaraman will discuss his award-winning book The Counterinsurgent's Constitution: Law in the Age of Small Wars (Oxford University Press 2012) at the 2013 IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law/Roy C. Palmer Civil Liberties Prize Lecture. The lecture will begin at noon on November 21 in the law school's Judge Abraham Lincoln Marovitz Courtroom, 565 West Adams Street (between Clinton and Jefferson streets) in Chicago. The program is free and open to the public.
The IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law/Roy C. Palmer Civil Liberties Prize was established in 2007 by alumnus Roy C. Palmer and his wife, Susan M. Palmer, to encourage and reward public debate among scholars on current issues affecting the rights of individuals and the responsibilities of governments throughout the world. Winning books are exemplary works of scholarship that explore the tension between civil liberties and national security in contemporary American society.
In The Counterinsurgent's Constitution: Law in the Age of Small Wars, Professor Sitaraman explores the intersection of law and counterinsurgency strategy. He says counterinsurgency became America's dominant approach for achieving its national security goals abroad after the 2006 "surge" in Iraq. However, controversy and debate surround counterinsurgency as a strategy—both for its military effectiveness overseas and the unexplored legal path it takes us down here at home. The book outlines how law operates during counterinsurgency and explains that following the laws of war is both morally and strategically beneficial. The book posits that law and counterinsurgency are not only united, they actively reinforce one another.
A member of the Vanderbilt Law School faculty since 2011, Professor Sitaraman focuses on issues in public law ranging from foreign relations and international law to domestic regulation and institutional design. From 2011 to 2013, he served as policy director and senior counsel to candidate and Senator Elizabeth Warren. Professor Sitaraman has also been a research fellow at the Counterinsurgency Training Center at Camp Julien in Kabul, Afghanistan, and a visiting fellow at the Center for a New American Security. He is a principal of the Truman National Security Project, and was recently named a senior fellow at the Center for American Progress, a nonpartisan Washington, D.C.-based think tank, where he will work on issues ranging from economics to national security.
Professor Sitaraman graduated magna cum laude from Harvard with a degree in government. He earned a master's degree in political thought and intellectual history from Emmanuel College, Cambridge, where he was the Lionel de Jersey Harvard scholar. Professor Sitaraman graduated magna cum laude from Harvard Law School, where he was an editor on the Harvard Law Review.
Benefactor Roy Palmer, a lawyer and real estate developer, is a 1962 honors graduate of IIT Chicago-Kent and a member of its board of overseers. He and his wife, Susan, are active in numerous civic, social and philanthropic organizations.
Founded in 1888, IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law is celebrating "125 years of distinctive legal education." IIT Chicago-Kent is the law school of Illinois Institute of Technology, a private, Ph.D.-granting institution with programs in engineering, psychology, architecture, business, design and law.
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