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To the 2011 Law of War class at Brooklyn Law School. Welcome!

Here is a link to a sample outline and some writing tips for your paper.

If you are having trouble with research make sure you check the links page. There are lots of useful sites. Please also note the Reading List Tab. This is a continuing project to list books in Prof. Wallach's personal collection which are available to students for research. Many of the tabs are up to date. Others will follow.


Please remember, all final papers are due by noon on the FIRST day of exams. See, further discussion below.

General Matters

Brooklyn Term Papers

This is a paper only course. No exams are given. Students should choose a topic by 27 January,  submit at least one outline on or before  17 February and at least one rough draft on or before 7 April. You may, however, submit as many drafts as you like.

Topic Hints:

This is a law of war course, so try to avoid topics which are purely outside that ambit. If you submit a poly sci, philosophy or U.S. constitutional law topic, or one more suited to another course, I will try to guide you to a more suitable focus. That said, there is a lot of latitude within the subject including historical analysis and narrow examinations of law of war issues within a broader non-germane topic.

A final version is due on or before noon on the first day of exams, and must be on time. If a paper is late it will be dropped by one full grade for each day it is late. That is, 1 full grade for the first 24 hours, one full grade for the next etc. A paper may be submitted by e-mail in draft or final, BUT, the student is responsible for assuring that I receive it in a form which will open with proper formatting. I will respond promptly to any query if you are concerned about timely receipt.

Please use footnotes rather than endnotes, and please number pages, especially in drafts, as I will key my comments to page numbers.

Samples of an "A" papers are available.

Class Participation and Grading

Assignments should be read.

Adequate participation means that when I ask you about the reading assignments it is obvious you have thought about them, including the questions which are contained within each chapter. Consistently inadequate participation will lower your grade by a third of a grade.

Outstanding participation including additional reading or other knowledge which adds to the class may raise your grade by a third of a grade. Thus, an A paper by an outstanding participant may receive an A+.

Grading papers: I do not grade on a straight curve. The standard is subjective but in general an adequate  paper with some defects will bring a "C+" or "B-", an adequate paper with no defects will bring in a "B" or "B+" a paper with original concepts and research but some defects "B+" or "A-", a publishable quality paper brings an "A". As a rule, I do not give Ds but I have on very rare occasions. The only Fs are for not turning in your paper at all, or for dishonesty i.e. plagiarism, or making up or altering facts or law.

Grading factors considered include:

-grammar and spelling... I expect it; you get points off for not having it;

-accuracy in facts and research;

-citation to authorities...consistency matters;

-originality and completeness of research;

originality of conception; and

logical presentation.

However, please be advised that I will point out (but not correct) all defects I find in any rough drafts, and expect and am happy to work closely with authors to produce a publishable quality paper.

The Links Page

Please review the Links Page. It contains a number of links to military/legal sites.  In the course of writing your paper you must either contact at least one such site with a relevant written inquiry, obtain a substantive response, and incorporate it in your paper, or contact and interview an original source. If at first you don't succeed, let me know. I will help...

Questions And Problems

Again, each chapter contains questions and problems. You are expected to have reviewed those items and thought about them before class, as each chapter is assigned.

Office Hours

I am available in my chambers at the U.S. Court of International Trade most afternoons. Please call my secretary, Linda Sue Sloane (Phone 212 264-2237) between 9 am and Noon (Mon.-Thurs.) to make an appointment. I will also be glad to speak to any student before or after class. I make it a point to be in the cafeteria well before class begins.

The Library

I strongly encourage you to use the law library in your research. I have asked Jean Davis, the international law librarian to assist you in that work. She is extremely skilled and will help you if you ask.


Given the nature of the class (seminar), students will be permitted a maximum of two unexcused absences. If you have any problem requiring an excused absence, please inform me in advance if possible. E-mail is fine. (I will give you an e-mail address in class. Please do not use the BLS e-mail system to contact me.) I will take your word that a problem requires an absence. You are going to be lawyers; your word is your bond.





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