Battlefield Next Blog
Battlefield Next Podcast Episode 3: Interview with Mr. Fred Borch
January 13, 2020
On today’s podcast we have an interview with Mr. Fred Borch about the historical events that shaped the practice of operational law by judge advocates into the robust practice area we know it as today: national security law. Mr. Borch is a Professor of Legal History and Leadership at The Judge Advocate General's Legal Center and School where he also holds the title of Regimental Historian and Archivist.
The episode begins with Mr. Borch providing a historical backdrop about the role of lawyers in the Army from the earliest days of General George Washington's Continental Army. The discussion also addresses the infamous Mai Lai Massacre and how this event served as a catalyst for change in a judge advocate's role in operational settings.
Below is a timeline of some of the subject-areas discussed during the episode:
00:00 Episode introduction
01:10 Early role of lawyers in the Army
03:15 Impact of Mai Lai Massacre
04:29 Peers Inquiry criticized Army JAGC
12:04 Impact of Operation Urgent Fury (Grenada) - the wake up call
15:27 Impact of Operation Just Cause (Panama)
16:40 Transformation of operational law practice during Desert Shield / Desert Storm
21:40 Operational law practice after 9/11
24:42 Book recommendations
29:19 Closing remarks
If you’re interested in learning more about some of the topics covered during this episode, we recommend the following additional reading and resources:
- "Rule of Engagement for Land Forces: A Matter of Training, not Lawyering" by then-MAJ Mark S. Martins
- "Judge Advocates in Combat: Army Lawyers in Military Operations from Vietnam to Haiti" by Fred Borch
Mr. Borch's Book Recommendations:
- "Implacable Foes: War in the Pacific, 1944-1945" by Waldo Heinrichs and Marc S. Gallicchio
- "American Slavery, American Freedom", by Edmund S. Morgan
- "The Magicians" by Lev Grossman
For more information related to FCD you can follow us on Twitter @jagfcd or by visiting our webpage. If you have recommendations or suggestions about future topics or guests, please send us an email, or you can leave us a comment by signing in below. Finally, if you like what you hear, please leave us a review on iTunes and subscribe to "Battlefield Next" on your favorite podcast app. While this is a podcast created by US Army Judge Advocates from Future Concepts Directorate, our goal is to reach other judge advocates and lawyers across the DoD, law students, and members of academia. Your reviews help make this possible.
For more information about the US Army JAG Corps, you can go here. If you’re interested in joining the Army JAG Corps, you can get more information by contacting the Judge Advocate Recruiting Office (JARO) or by visiting their webpage.
*Music by Joseph McDade
**The views expressed on the podcast are the views of the participants and do not necessarily represent those of The Judge Advocate General’s Legal Center and School, the Army, the Department of Defense, or any other agency of the US Government.