CONNECTING PEOPLE TO IDEAS AND TO EACH OTHER
CONNECTING PEOPLE TO IDEAS AND TO EACH OTHER

How Crimes of War Became Not Okay

 When planes struck the Twin Towers in 2001, John Fabian Witt–author, historian, and Yale Law School Professor–found his thoughts turning to history and the laws of war.“All of the policies that have happened since 9/11 have happened inside the American tradition. Even in the furthest excesses of the Bush administration, it wasn’t that far off,” Witt stated in response to a question about acts of war versus criminal acts. “The idea of moving a conflict outside of the US is as old as the US.”However, as a historian, Witt prefers to focus less on contemporary affairs and more on the origins of some of the questions with which we’re grappling today. This has prompted him to look into the legal contributions of US Army General Winfield Scott during the Mexican War in the 1840s. “My historian’s training makes me want …