Ukraine wants global court to investigate crimes in Crimea and east

Ukraine wants the International Criminal Court to investigate all alleged war crimes in Crimea and eastern Ukraine, Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin said in an interview, broadening an existing probe…Alex Whiting, a former senior ICC prosecutor, said a new referral could force an investigation of the wider conflict. “Here (Crimea and eastern Ukraine) there have been widespread allegations of war crimes and even crimes against humanity, so it will be much harder to ignore,” he said.

Fareed Zakaria’s ‘In Defense of a Liberal Education,’ and More

[Lani] Guinier, a professor at Harvard Law School, became famous when her nomination to be assistant attorney general for civil rights was derailed by the raging culture wars of the early 1990s. Her book does not advocate the kind of mechanically redistributive race-based policies she was then accused (not always fairly) of promoting. Instead, she denounces the “testocracy,” in which students are sorted into elite colleges based on the narrow, individualistic measures assessed by the SAT. This, she argues, has the effect of both reinforcing inherited privilege and convincing the “testocratic” victors that their spoils are well deserved.

Judges Skeptical of Challenge to Proposed E.P.A. Rule on Climate Change

A panel of federal judges appeared inclined on Thursday to dismiss the first legal challenge to President Obama’s most far-reaching regulation to slow climate change…Among the lawyers arguing on behalf of the coal companies was Laurence H. Tribe, a well-known Harvard scholar of constitutional law who was a mentor to Mr. Obama when he attended law school. Republicans who oppose the rule have cheered Mr. Tribe’s role in the case. In court on Thursday, Mr. Tribe laid out a broad, sweeping argument against the rule as unconstitutional, echoing spirited arguments that he has been making for months in legal briefs, congressional testimony and an opinion article in The Wall Street Journal.

Body cameras could transform policing – for the worse

An op-ed by Shakeer Rahman ’15: The day after video surfaced of a North Charleston, South Carolina, police officer shooting Walter Scott in the back, the town’s mayor announced plans to outfit all its police officers with body cameras. The New York Police Department has started to put cameras on officers, and the White House has announced a $263 million program to supply 50,000 body cameras to local police.

Another Clinton Promises to Fix Political Financing

More than 20 years ago, a newly elected President Bill Clinton decided that overhauling the country’s loophole-ridden campaign fund-raising rules would be a top goal of his first year in office. Months later, faced with battles over health care and the deficit as well as opposition from lawmakers in his own party who had prospered under the old political-money regime, Mr. Clinton dropped the issue. … Still, Lawrence Lessig, a political theorist at Harvard and founder of a super PAC that has tried — but so far mostly failed — to turn dismay over Citizens United into a winning political issue, said he welcomed Mrs. Clinton’s help. “There is no hypocrisy in saying you can run a campaign according to the rules of the road while also saying that you want to change the system,” he said. Mrs. Clinton’s signal in Iowa, Mr. Lessig said, “reflects the increasing awareness everyone has that unless we address this issue, we can’t address any other issues.”


Protecting children’s rights in the digital age

In an era of rapid globalisation, the digital media has become a powerful way for children and young people to realise their rights — ranging from accessing information, playing games, to expressing themselves freely and even anonymously. The latest digital technologies have a crucial role to play in empowering children by facilitating communication, education and activism. A growing body of evidence from across the world indicates that more and more children and young people are relying on digital tools, platforms and services to learn, engage, participate or socialise….In this regard, the publication Children’s Rights in the Digital Age: A download from children around the world is a very useful and comprehensive tool for all working for the betterment of children and young people. In April 2014, the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University and UNICEF co-hosted, in collaboration with PEW Internet, EU Kids Online, the Internet Society (ISOC), Family Online Safety Institute (FOSI), and, the first-ever international ‘digitally connected’ symposium on children, youths, and the digital media. 

Obama’s climate change policy appears to survive early court challenge

President Obama’s ambitious plan to battle climate change by forcing power plants to reduce their greenhouse gases appeared to survive its first court challenge Thursday, but only because the formal rules are still pending at the Environmental Protection Agency….Industry attorneys were joined by Harvard law professor Laurence Tribe, a onetime mentor to Obama. He suggested the plan was unconstitutional because federal officials were “commandeering” states to do the bidding of Washington. Tribe, who was hired by Peabody Energy Corp., raised eyebrows last month when he testified before a House committee and described Obama’s environmental policies as “burning the Constitution.” … “It was a good day for the government, but just the first of many to come,” said Richard Lazarus, a Harvard Law professor and environmental expert who supports the EPA rules.

Appeals Court Skeptical of Case Against EPA Climate Rule

A federal appeals court panel suggested Thursday that it may be too early for a court challenge to an Obama administration proposal to cut carbon emissions from U.S. power plants. The case against the Environmental Protection Agency, up for oral argument at the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, is the first test of how well the central component of President Barack Obama’s climate agenda can withstand legal scrutiny. …“If it winds up that the court for whatever reason stops EPA, that will be a very significant blow to the president’s agenda,” said Jody Freeman, a Harvard law professor and former climate adviser in the White House during Mr. Obama’s first term as president.

Big coal gets its day in court against the EPA

Coal-mining companies Peabody Energy and Murray Energy have sued to block the Environmental Protection Agency from finalizing its Clean Power Plan, the Obama administration’s broadest plan to reduce carbon-dioxide emissions from power plants. Today lawyers present oral arguments in the federal Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia. In general, the law favors the EPA, according to Harvard law professor Jody Freeman, a former attorney for the Obama White House who wrote the book on climate change and U.S. law, published by the American Bar Association. If the court allows the case to move forward, “I would be very surprised,” she says. “Now, of course, look: Courts sometimes do unusual things.” A decision against the EPA—  even if reversed later— would mean delay, which could be costly to President Obama, who has a tight timeline.


Alan Dershowitz: Germans, Europeans Want to Forget Holocaust

On the the 70th Holocaust Remembrance Day, renowned legal analyst Alan Dershowitz tells Newsmax TV that most Germans want to forget about the Holocaust. “The vast majority of Germans want to put it behind them and want to forget about it,” Dershowitz, Harvard Law School professor emeritus, told John Bachman and Miranda Khan on “Newsmax Now” on Thursday. “That’s true all over Europe. People feel guilty about it,” he explained. “We have to remember because if you don’t remember, it can be repeated.” According to Dershowitz, who is an outspoken supporter of Israel, “to prevent another Holocaust, we must always remember the prior Holocaust, and as Elie Wiesel once put it so well, ‘the lesson of the Holocaust is always believe the threats of your enemies more than the promises of your friends.’ “