Ashley S. Deeks
Associate Professor of Law
J.D., University of Chicago Law School, 1998
B.A., Williams College, 1993
Ashley Deeks joined the Law School in 2012 as an associate professor of law after two years as an academic fellow at Columbia Law School. Her primary research and teaching interests are in the areas of international law, national security, intelligence, and the laws of war. She has written a number of articles on the use of force, the intersection of national security and international law, and the laws of war. She is a member of the State Department's Advisory Committee on International Law and serves as a senior contributor to the Lawfare blog.
Before joining Columbia in 2010, she served as the assistant legal adviser for political-military affairs in the U.S. Department of State’s Office of the Legal Adviser, where she worked on issues related to the law of armed conflict, the use of force, conventional weapons, and the legal framework for the conflict with al-Qaida. She also provided advice on intelligence issues. In previous positions at the State Department, Deeks advised on international law enforcement, extradition and diplomatic property questions. In 2005, she served as the embassy legal adviser at the U.S. embassy in Baghdad, during Iraq’s constitutional negotiations. Deeks was a 2007-08 Council on Foreign Relations international affairs fellow and a visiting fellow in residence at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.
Deeks received her J.D. with honors from the University of Chicago Law School, where she was elected to the Order of the Coif and served as comment editor on the Law Review. After graduation, she clerked for Judge Edward R. Becker of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit.
"Domestic Humanitarian Law: Developing the Law of War in Domestic Courts." D. Jinks, J. Maogoto, S. Solomon (ads.), Applying International Humanitarian Law in Judicial and Quasi-Judicial Bodies: International and Domestic Aspects (TMC Asser Press, forthcoming 2014).
Taming the Doctrine of Preemption," The Oxford Handbook on the Use of Force, Marc Weller ed., OUP (forthcoming 2014).
"Consent to the Use of Force and International Law Supremacy," 54 Harv. J. Int'l L. 1 (2013).
"The Geography of Cyber Conflict: Through a Glass Darkly," 89 Int'l L. Stud. 1 (2013).
SSRN | HeinOnline (PDF)
"The Observer Effect: National Security Litigation, Executive Policy Changes, and Judicial Deference," 82 Fordham L. Rev. 827 (2013).
SSRN | HeinOnline (PDF)
“Unwilling or Unable: Toward a Normative Framework for Extra-Territorial Self-Defense," 52 Va. J. Int’l L. 483 (2012).
SSRN | HeinOnline (PDF)
"Iraq’s Constitution: A Drafting History"(with Matthew Burton), 40 Cornell Int’l L. J. 1 (2007).
In the Media
- "The Increasing State Practice and Opinio Juris on Spying" (Lawfare, 05/06/2015)
- "Is the Saudi War on Yemen Legal?" (IRIN, 04/03/2015)
- "International Legal Justification for the Yemen Intervention: Blink and Miss It" (Lawfare, 03/30/2015)
- "The U.S. Intelligence Community and Non-Neutral Principles" (Lawfare, 02/26/2015)
- "Is Jordan Attacking ISIS on a New Legal Theory?" (Lawfare, 02/07/2015)
- "The Sony Hack: Will the United States Take Countermeasures Against North Korea?" (Lawfare, 12/19/2014)
- The UK’s Article 51 Letter on Use of Force in Syria" (Lawfare, 12/12/2014)
- "A “Buffer Zone” Inside Syria, and Its Complications" (Lawfare, 12/05/2014)
- "The Forest and the Trees: Syrian Reactions to Foreign Actions Against ISIS" (Lawfare Blog, 11/03/2014)
- "Legal Questions Raised About U.S. Military Operation In Syria" (NPR, 10/06/2014)
- "Airstrikes In Syria And Iraq Pose Thorny Legal Questions" (International Business Times, 09/24/2014)
- "Strikes in Syria: The International Law Framework" (Lawfare, 09/24/2014)
- "Narrowing Down the U.S. International Legal Theory for ISIS Strikes in Syria" (Lawfare, 09/12/2014)
- "Legal Questions Loom As Obama Weighs Military Action In Syria" (NPR, 08/30/2014)
- "Obama Hints at Legal Rationale for Airstrikes in Syria" (Foreign Policy, 08/28/2014)
- "U.S. Airstrikes Against ISIS in Syria? Possible International Legal Theories" (Lawfare, 08/23/2014)
- "A Call for Article 51 Letters" (Lawfare, 06/25/2014)
- "Germany’s Prosecutor Rolls Up His Sleeves On NSA Surveillance" (Lawfare, 06/06/2014)
- "More Willing, More Able – But No Time Soon" (Lawfare, 06/01/2014)
- "Are the Benghazi Attackers Lawfully Targetable?" (Lawfare, 05/02/2014)
- "Is Russia Committing an Act of War?" (NBC News, 03/06/2014)
- "Is Russia Breaking International Law in the Ukraine? Or Not?" (LawFuel, 03/03/2014)
- "Here's What International Law Says About Russia's Intervention in Ukraine" (New Republic, 03/02/2014)
- "Yemeni ‘global terrorist’ says he has counterterrorism advice for Washington" (The Washington Post, 02/16/2014)
- "No “No Spy” Agreements?" (Lawfare, 02/13/2014)
- "East Timor’s Case in the ICJ: Will the Court Decide Whether Spying Violates International Law?" (Lawfare, 01/22/2014)
- "More on U.N. Detention Procedures for Military Operations" (Lawfare, 11/25/2013)
- "Does the ICCPR Establish an Extraterritorial Right to Privacy?" (Lawfare, 11/14/2013)
- "Snowden in Deutschland?" (Lawfare, 11/04/2013)
- "The German Intelligence Agencies Are Coming to Town" (Lawfare, 10/28/2013)
- "U.S. Spying Scandal: Why Germany and France Won't Get Britain's Deal" (The Christian Science Monitor, 10/28/2013)
- "Courts Can Influence National Security Without Doing a Single Thing" (The New Republic, 10/21/2013)
- "What Justifies Intervening if Syria Uses Chemical Weapons?" (CNN, 08/27/2013)
- "Syria Chemical Weapons Response Pose Major Test for Obama" (Los Angeles Times, 08/27/2013)
- "The Value of Kosovo as a Non-Legal Precedent" (Lawfare, 08/24/2013)
- "Extradition or Rendition? How Will the U.S. Get Snowden Back on U.S. Territory?" (WNYC/The Takeaway, 06/18/2013)
- "Safe Haven(s) for Snowden?" (Lawfare, 06/11/2013)
- "What Extradition Proceedings Against Ed Snowden Would Look Like - And How the U.S. Might Get Around Them" (Talking Points Memo, 06/11/2013)
- "Targeted Killing Comes to Define War on Terror" (The New York Times, 04/08/2013)
- "Are There International Rules for Cyberwarfare?" (CBC News, 03/21/2013)