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Columbia Law School

2009

Columbia Law Review

Human Rights Law

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Full-Text Articles in Law

Beyond Protection, Philip A. Hamburger Jan 2009

Beyond Protection, Philip A. Hamburger

Faculty Scholarship

Do foreign terrorists have rights under American law? And can they be prosecuted under such law? These questions may seem novel and singularly dificult. In fact, the central legal questions raised by foreign terrorism have long been familiar and have long had answers in the principle of protection.

This Article explains the principle of protection and its implications for terrorism. Under the principle of protection, as understood in early American law, allegiance and protection were reciprocal. As a result, a person without allegiance was without protection, including the protection of the law. Not owing allegiance, such a person had no ...