The Lawfare Podcast

Four years on, the cultural differences between Europe and the United States exposed by Edward Snowden’s disclosures of NSA surveillance programs still loom large in transatlantic relations. At our most recent Hoover Book Soiree, Benjamin Wittes sat down with Russell Miller—editor of a new volume on Privacy and Power: A Transatlantic Dialogue in the Shadow of the NSA-Affair— and Ralf Poscher—who, along with Ben, contributed a chapter to the book—to chat about privacy and surveillance oversight post-Snowden.

Direct download: Episode_221.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:09am EDT

Over the past year, Lawfare has expended a great deal of ink on the problem of sextortion, a form of online sexual assault in which perpetrators obtain explicit images or video of their victims and use those images to extort further explicit content. We even brought Mona Sedky, a Justice Department prosecutor who focuses on sextortion cases, onto the podcast to discuss her work. Now, we’re pleased to feature Mona on the podcast once again with audio of her talk last week at George Washington University Law School on prosecuting sextortion.

If you’re interested in reading our Brookings Institution reports on sextortion, you can find them here and here.

Direct download: Episode_220.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:14am EDT

As our dependence on cyberspace increases, so too will the urgency of crafting good cybersecurity policy—but the combination of knotty problems in the realms of both technology and law often makes these issues particularly difficult to iron out. In this episode of the podcast, Susan Hennessey sits down with Trey Herr, Fellow with the Belfer Center's Cyber Security Project at the Harvard Kennedy School; Jane Chong, Deputy Managing Editor of Lawfare and National Security and Law Associate at the Hoover Institution; and Robert M. Lee, nonresident national cybersecurity fellow at New America, to chat about a new book on the subject: Cyber Insecurity: Navigating the Perils of the Next Information AgeCo-edited by Trey and Richard Harrison, Director of Operations and Defense Technology Programs at the American Foreign Policy Council, and with chapters by Jane and Robert, the book seeks provides a practitioner's roadmap to cybersecurity policy.

Direct download: Episode_219.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:07am EDT

At the Third Triple Entente Beer Summit, the usual Rational Security gang (Shane Harris, Benjamin Wittes, Tamara Cofman Wittes, and Susan Hennessey) joins up with Stewart Baker and Michael Vatis of the Steptoe Cyberlaw Podcast to discuss airstrikes in Syria, the misadventures of Devin Nunes, and Steve Bannon's ouster from the National Security Council. Plus, in Object Lessons, Stewart recommends Secondhand Time by Svetlana Alexievich and Shane does some sleuthing. 
 
Direct download: Episode_218.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:18pm EDT

On Friday, March 31st, the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence held its first open hearing in its investigation into Russian interference in the U.S. election on "Disinformation: A Primer in Russian Active Measures and Influence Campaigns." The experts before the committee, including Eugene Rumer, Roy Godson, Clint Watts, Kevin Mandia, General Keith Alexander, and Thomas Rid, gave a useful rundown of the scope and mechanics of Russian influence. There's just one problem: their testimony ran five hours long. So once again, we've cut down the hearing to a snappy two hours, bringing you just the good parts. 

Direct download: Episode_217.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:59pm EDT

At this week's Hoover Book Soiree, Samuel Tadros of the Hudson Institute and the Hoover Institution sat down with Graeme Wood to discuss his new book, The Way of the Strangers: Encounters with the Islamic StateThe book both situates ISIS within context of Islamic history and theology and chronicles Wood's meetings with ISIS supporters and sympathizers across the world in an effort to understand what's behind the group's pull. It's a useful complement to the news coming out of Iraq and Syria as we begin to consider what the future of ISIS will look like after the fall of Raqqa and Mosul.

Direct download: Episode_216.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:34pm EDT

Between leading the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence's first open hearing on Russian election interference on Monday, and sparring with HPSCI Chairman Rep. Devin Nunes over Nunes's odd escapades regarding possible incidental collection of communications of Trump associates, HPSCI Ranking Member Rep. Adam Schiff has had a busy week. On Tuesday, Lawfare and the Brookings Institution were pleased to host Rep. Schiff for an address on "The Role of Congress in Protecting Liberal Democracy." In conversation with Lawfare's Benjamin Wittes and Susan Hennessey, Rep. Schiff spelled out an ambitious legislative program and a vision for revitalizing the power of Congress under the Trump presidency. 

If you're interested in reading Rep. Schiff's remarks, Lawfare has published them here in article form.

On April 6th, Lawfare will be convening the third annual joint live podcast taping with Rational Security and the Steptoe Cyberlaw Podcast at the Triple Entente Beer Summit. Tickets are available here. We'd love to see you there!

Direct download: Episode_215.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:03pm EDT

Yesterday, FBI Director James Comey and NSA Director Admiral Mike Rogers testified before the House Intelligence Committee on Russian interference in the U.S. election for an exhausting five and a half hours. They made a lot of news, but there were also a lot of refusals to comment and speeches made by members of the Committee. So we've cut down their testimony to less than an hour, giving you only what you need to know. 

 
Direct download: Episode_214.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:07pm EDT

President Donald Trump has pledged to end the defense sequester and make the development of defensive and offensive cyber capabilities a White House priority, but the contours of U.S. cyber policy under the new administration have yet to be set—in fact, the administration still hasn't released its much-heralded Executive Order on cybersecurity, though several drafts have been leaked. So what should we expect to see from the new administration regarding cybersecurity?

To answer that question, we're bringing you audio from a conference hosted by Lawfare with the Hoover Institution in Washington and Intel Security and featuring a keynote address from Steve Grobman, Chief Technology Officer at Intel, along with a panel discussion on cybersecurity and Congress moderated by Carrie Johnson of NPR with Hill staffers including Brett DeWitt, Hope Goins, Allen Souza, Michael Bahar, and Brett Freedman. 

Direct download: Episode_213.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:21pm EDT

This week on the podcast, Jack Goldsmith sat down with former Director of the National Counterterrorism Center Matt Olsen to talk about the current state of national security. What should we make of the president's tweeted allegations of politically motivated wiretapping? Of the revised executive order restricting entry into the United States from six majority-Muslim countries? Of the most recent release by Wikileaks? Of Trump's persistent attacks on the integrity of the intelligence community? Jack and Matt are here, if not to explain things, then at least to talk them through.

Direct download: Episode_212.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:36am EDT