The genesis of this book rests with a student's question, many years ago, about how the doctrines of jurisdiction within international law fit with the constitutional treatment of Puerto Rico. From there I began to read more about the American imperial adventure of the early twentieth century and, increasingly, to see the parallels between these older historic episodes and the then-emerging effort to detain foreign nationals outside American territory in the wake of the 9/11 attacks. Soon, and with the urging of others, I began to think about a book on these topics.
Over the many years that I explored these issues I have incurred numerous debts, but have also had the great pleasure of working with many excellent scholars and students. At Princeton, where I spent the 2002–3 academic year in the Law and Public Affairs Program at the Woodrow Wilson School, I began the early stages of this project. I thank Princeton for its support and in particular thank our leader at LAPA, Chris Eisgruber, who inculcated a wonderful spirit of inquiry and gave us substantial freedom to think and write. Visits at Harvard Law School, Columbia Law School, and the University of Chicago Law School gave me new colleagues to engage and many new ideas. And with the support of my Dean at UCLA, Michael Schill, I convened a small interdisciplinary workshop on territoriality at UCLA in 2006, which provided me a wealth of new issues to consider. Over the last few years I have presented aspects of this project at many institutions around North America, including Princeton, Columbia, Harvard, Hofstra, Berkeley, Chicago, Duke, SMU, the University of British Columbia, Georgetown, Penn, the RAND Corporation, and UCLA. I thank the many participants at all these talks for their helpful and constructive feedback.
An early and brief version of my argument appeared as part of a volume edited by Miles Kahler and Barbara Walter, titled Territoriality and Conflict in