John C. Yoo
Along with Robert J. Delahunty, Yoo co-authored the controversial Legal Arguments for Avoiding the Jurisdiction of the Geneva Conventions, a sweeping 42-page memo concluding that neither the Geneva Conventions nor any of the laws of war applied to the conflict in Afghanistan. This legal memo, developed without input from the military or the U.S. Department of State, was widely condemned as a reversal of established U.S. policy regarding the humane treatment of prisoners. 
In 2003, Yoo returned to his position as professor of law at the University of California at Berkeley School of Law, where he has taught since 1993. He had been on a leave of absence since 2001.
ProPublica notes that "the Bush administration’s "war on terror" - including its controversial policies on detentions, interrogations and warrantless wiretapping - were all underpinned by legal memoranda. While some of those memos have been released ... the former administration chose to keep many others secret, citing security and confidentiality concerns. The decision to release them now lies with President Obama. To help inform the debate - and inject an extra dose of accountability - we’re posting a list of the relevant memos, both public and secret." 
Memo authors include John C. Yoo, Steven G. Bradbury, Jay Bybee, James B. Comey, Robert J. Delahunty, Jack Goldsmith, James Ho, Daniel Levin, Patrick Philbin, legal architects (and some internal critics) of the Bush Administration's use of torture and detention policies now being reversed or reviewed by the Obama Administration.
Detention, Treatment and Trial of Certain Non-Citizens in the War Against Terrorism
The President's Military Order of November 13, 2001, Detention, Treatment, and Trial of Certain Non-Citizens in the War Against Terrorism, § 1(a), 66 Fed. Reg. 57,833 (2001) was referenced by Yoo in
- John C. Yoo and James C. Ho, "International Law and the War on Terrorism," University of California, Berkeley, August 1, 2003:
- "This paper will identify and discuss two legal questions raised by the war on terrorism that have generated significant controversy among academics and public commentators. First, did the September 11, 2001 attacks initiate a war, or 'international armed conflict' to use the vocabulary of modern public international law? Second, what legal rules govern the status and treatment of members of the al Qaeda terrorist network and the Taliban militia that harbored and supported them in Afghanistan?"
- Office of Legal Counsel, U.S. Department of Justice. Deputy Assistant Attorney General. 2001-2003.
- Boalt Hall School of Law, University of California at Berkeley, 1993-present.
- Professor of Law. 1999-present (leave of absence 2001-2003).
- Acting Professor of Law. 1993-99.
- Director, International Legal Studies Program, 1999-2001.
- Committee on the Judiciary, U.S. Senate. General Counsel. 1995-1996.
- Justice Clarence Thomas. Law Clerk. U.S. Supreme Court. 1994-95.
- Judge Laurence H. Silberman. Law Clerk. U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit. 1992-93.
- Bachelors of Arts summa cum laude, Harvard University. Major in American history. 1989.
- Juris Doctor, Yale University. 1992.
- UC Berkeley Junior Faculty Research Grant, 1997-98.
- John M. Olin Faculty Fellowship, 1998-99.
- Paul M. Bator Award for excellence in legal scholarship and teaching from the Federalist Society for Law and Public Policy Studies, 2001.
- American Bar Association; Advisory Committee, Standing Committee on Law and National Security
- National Constitution Center; Scholars Advisory Panel
- Berkeley Journal of International Law; Board of Editors
Fellowships and Other Associations
- Olin Foundation Fellowship (treaties and constitutional law study)
- Rockefeller Foundation Fellowship (effects of globalization on American constitutional law book)
- American Enterprise Institute Visiting Scholar
- Council on Foreign Relations
- Federalist Society Bator Award for excellence in legal scholarship and teaching
- Society of Historians of American Foreign Relations
- Bar of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
- Bar of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
- Advisory Committee, Department of Justice Transition Team, Bush/Cheney Transition
- Co-Chair, Law Professors for Bush/Cheney
Related SourceWatch Resources
- Abu Ghraib
- Bush Administration War Crimes in Iraq
- Jack Goldsmith
- Legal Arguments for Avoiding the Jurisdiction of the Geneva Conventions
- Robert J. Delahunty
- "John C. Yoo. Biographic Sketch," Institute for Corean-American Studies, undated.
- "Rightweb Profile: John Woo", RightWeb, last updated: April 15, 2008.
- Jennifer Van Bergen, "John Yoo: The President's Executioner", Global Research, April 22, 2008.
UC Berkeley News
- "Rules of law: Let states decide," March 1, 2004.
- Commentary: "Behind the 'torture memos'," January 1, 2005.
Wall Street Journal
- "International Court of Hubris," April 7, 2004.
- "Terrorists Have No Geneva Rights: Don't blur the lines between Guantanamo and Abu Ghraib," Opinion Journal, May 29, 2004.
- "The Supreme Court Goes to War," June 30, 2004.
Los Angeles Times
- "With All Necessary and Appropriate Force," June 14, 2004.
- "A Crucial Look at Torture Law," July 6, 2004.
- "Treaties as Laws?: The Constitutionality of Congressional-Executive Agreements," Michigan Law Review (2001).
- "Bush v. Gore and Judicial Legitimacy," Chicago Law Review (2001).
- "The Puzzling Persistence of Process-Based Theories of Federalism," Texas Law Review (2001).
- "Treaty Interpretation, the Separation of Powers, and the National Missile Defense," California Law Review (2001).
- "Kosovo, War Powers, and the Multilateral Future," Pennsylvania Law Review (2000)."
Articles & Commentary about Yoo
- Joe Conason, "From John Ashcroft's Justice Department to Abu Ghraib: The men behind the administration's decision to ignore and undermine the Geneva Conventions in Iraq," Salon, May 22, 2004.
- Terence Chea, "Berkeley Professor Denounced for POW Memo," Newsday, May 23, 2004: "Some graduating University of California law students used their commencement Saturday to denounce a professor who helped the Bush administration develop a legal framework that critics say led to the abuse of Iraqi prisoners. ... About one-quarter of the 270 graduates of Berkeley's Boalt School of Law donned red armbands over their black robes in a silent protest of a legal memo law professor John Yoo co-wrote when he served in the U.S. Justice Department's Office of Legal Counsel. ... Outside the ceremony, they also passed out fliers denouncing Yoo for 'aiding and abetting war crimes.' Yoo said beforehand he didn't plan to attend the graduation. ... A petition signed by nearly 200 law students and alumni since Thursday alleges that Yoo's memo 'contributed directly to the reprehensible violation of human rights in Iraq and elsewhere.' ... The student petition urges Yoo to repudiate the memo, declare his opposition to torture and encourage the Bush administration to comply with the Geneva Conventions that protect the rights of prisoners of war. Otherwise, he should resign, the petition says. ... Yoo said he had no plans to resign."
- Michael Isikoff, "Double Standards?: A Justice Department memo proposes that the United States hold others accountable for international laws on detainees-but that Washington did not have to follow them itself," Newsweek, May 25, 2004.
- John Barry, Michael Hirsh, and Michael Isikoff, "The Roots of Torture: The road to Abu Ghraib began after 9/11, when Washington wrote new rules to fight a new kind of war," Newsweek, May 25, 2004.
- "Memos Reveal War Crimes Warnings: Could Bush administration officials be prosecuted for 'war crimes' as a result of new measures used in the war on terror? The White House's top lawyer thought so", Newsweek, May 25, 2004.
- Robert Collier, "Furor over UC prof's brief on war: He advised Bush on prisoners' rights", San Francisco Chronicle, June 7, 2004.
- Nick Schou, "F. Yoo! UC Irvine protesters humiliate torture-memo author", Orange County Weekly, Vol. 10 No. 23 February 11 - 17, 2005.