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The American "war on terror" has been played out around the world through war campaigns, discrete military actions, drone strikes, and the administration of detention facilities, all of which have generated a great deal of debate and controversy. Much less covered has been the domestic legal system and the prosecution of individuals charged with crimes that reference foreign terrorism. This talk explores the assumptions behind what the United States considers a terrorist organization and the troubling implications of those assumptions.
Wadie Said is a Professor of Law at the Univeristy of South Carolina School of Law. He teaches courses in criminal law, criminal procedure, immigration law, and seminars on international human rights law and counterterrorism. Prior to this position, Said was a visiting professor in the Law and Society Program at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and an assistant federal public defender in the Office of the Federal Public Defender for the Middle District of Florida.
His scholarship analyzes the challenges inherent in terrorism and national security prosecutions, covering topics such as coercive interrogation, the use of informants, law enforcement discretion and extraterritorial jurisdiction, sentencing, expert evidence, and the ban on providing material support to designated foreign terrorist organizations. Said's book, Crimes of Terror: The Legal and Political Implications of Federal Terrorism Prosecutions (Oxford University Press, 2015), is a comprehensive legal analysis of the criminal terrorist prosecution in the United States.
He is an elected member of the American Law Institute, and serves on the Board of Editors of Amerasia Journal, as well as the Executive Committee of the AALS Section on National Security Law.
Said is a graduate of Princeton University and Columbia University School of Law, where he served as an articles editor of the Columbia Human Rights Law Review. Upon graduation from law school, he served as law clerk to Chief Judge Charles P. Sifton of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York, and as a litigation associate in the New York office of Debevoise and Plimpton, where he helped coordinate the firm's pro bono political asylum program.