About the Expert
John B. Bellinger III is adjunct senior fellow for international and national security law at the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR). He is also a partner at Arnold & Porter LLP in Washington, DC, where he advises sovereign governments and companies on a variety of international law and U.S. national security law issues.
From 2005 to 2009, Bellinger was the legal advisor for the U.S. Department of State under Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice. He led the U.S. delegation in numerous treaty negotiations and presentations to international bodies and represented the United States before the International Court of Justice in Mexico v. United States of America (Medellin) and before the Iran-U.S. Claims Tribunal. Before his confirmation as legal advisor, he managed Secretary Rice's Senate confirmation and codirected her State Department transition team. Bellinger served from 2001 to 2005 as senior associate counsel to the president and legal advisor to the National Security Council (NSC) at the White House, where he was the principal lawyer for the national security advisor, the NSC, and the NSC staff. He previously served as counsel for national security matters in the criminal division of the Justice Department during the Clinton administration, as special counsel to the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, and as special assistant to Director of Central Intelligence William H. Webster.
Bellinger is one of four U.S. members of the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague, which nominates judges to the International Court of Justice. He speaks and writes regularly on public international and national security law issues. His op-eds have appeared in the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, and International Herald Tribune. Bellinger received his AB from Princeton University's Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs in 1982, his JD from Harvard Law School in 1986, and an MA in foreign affairs from the University of Virginia in 1991.
- Arnold & Porter LLP, partner
- American Ditchley Foundation, board of directors, member
- American Law Institute, Executive Council, member
- Association for Diplomatic Studies and Training, board of directors, member
- Salzburg Global Seminar, board of directors, member
- Secretary of State’s Advisory Committee on International Law, member
- Stimson Center, board of directors, member
International Criminal Court (ICC) President Chile Eboe-Osuji discusses the purpose and value of the ICC’s work and the ICC’s relationship with the United States.
Last month, the White House announced that the United States will withdraw from the Open Skies Treaty, citing Russian noncompliance with the agreement as part of the rationale for the decision. Christopher A. Ford reflects on the past thirty-five years of U.S. compliance assessments and discusses U.S. concerns over Soviet and Russian behavior in arms control.
Makan Delrahim discusses fresh thinking on ways to promote procedural convergence in global antitrust enforcement.
Fatou Bensouda, prosecutor for the International Criminal Court (ICC), discusses her vision for the ICC, her current caseload, and the court's role on the international stage.
Ambassador David Scheffer and former State Department legal adviser John Bellinger will discuss how international justice over the last two decades has affected international politics, including the U.S. role in assisting local war crimes prosecutions in Libya and elsewhere. Related readings:Regime Trials Belong in Libya's Courts by John B. Bellinger IIIPartners in Preventive Action: The United States and International Institutions, A Council Special Report
Do current trends in international law threaten U.S. sovereignty? What international legal or normative restraints on the use of force should the United States accept and promote? What should be the place of international law in U.S. jurisprudence? What attitude should the United States take toward the International Criminal Court?