The Champion

March 2012 , Page 61 

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Why the NDAA Will Substantially Reduce, If Not Eliminate Altogether, International Cooperation With Respect to Counterterrorism (Informal Opinion)

By Joshua L. Dratel

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The politicians, pundits, advocates, and academics on one side or the other have all ventured an interpretation of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) — or thrown up their hands, protesting that the Act’s vague and confusing terminology defies a straightforward or universal construction. From my perspective, what matters is not the standard or reasonable interpretation of the NDAA, or that which is constitutionally or statutorily defensible. What matters is the most extreme incarnation, since that is where anti-terrorism measures inexorably lead. Add to that the clear intent of many of the Act’s proponents, coupled with the political difficulties in foregoing the toughest available approach to terrorism, and interpretation becomes less important than what the NDAA represents in possibility.

As a metaphor, the NDAA is a loaded gun on the night table. You may rest comfortably knowing you will not use it improperly. You may trust your spouse — even your kids — to

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