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Phil Carter of the excellent blog Intel Dump brought to the blogosphere’s attention this important report from Harvard University ” Long Term Legal Strategy Project for Preserving Security And Democratic Freedoms in the War on Terrorism”. I urge everyone to read it – I am not finished yet but I have basically two preliminary comments.

I laud Harvard for attempting to wrangle with post-9/11 problems in a serious attempt to determine some new rules instead of just maintaining a stubborn state of denial. There is movement toward reality in this report, enough to worry Carter in fact. Since I see warfare as – well – a state of war, I find this to be refreshingly realistic for the bipartisan elite.

Unfortunately, the document is still erring so far on the side of peacetime paradigm legalisms that I can easily see, if this framework were to be adopted, a return to U.S. military operations being vetted by committees of lawyers who engage in an evolution of ever-more restrictive interpretations until presto – by fiat the American military is on the police model of warfare. Perhaps that is the idea behind this report – to rein everyone back in under the thumb of the ” good school ” lawyers and resume the old pretense that we are not at war with the Islamists.

Nevertheless, it’s an important report because it will be the cornerstone of the Democratic Party’s next critique of the war and their policy building-block for 2006 and 2008. Read it.

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