CrimProf Blog

Editor: Kevin Cole
Univ. of San Diego School of Law

Thursday, November 3, 2005

Military Commission Chief to Speak at W&M Law on Detainee Operations in War on Terror

Altenburg John D. Altenburg, Jr., the retired Army major general in charge of the trials of terror suspects at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, will present a lecture titled “Detainee Operations in the War on Terror” at 3:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 9, at William & Mary Law School. The talk, part of the Distinguished Lecture Series sponsored by the Human Rights and National Security Law Program, is free and open to the public and will be held in room 127.  Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld appointed Altenburg to serve as the appointing authority of military commissions in 2004. In this role, Altenburg is responsible for approving charges against individuals detained at Guantanamo Bay, approving plea agreements, and appointing members of military commissions.  Prior to being named to this post, Altenburg had retired from active duty, following 28 years as a U.S. Army lawyer. From 1997-01, he served as the assistant judge advocate general for the department of the Army and, in that post, provided advice on major legal and policy issues and was responsible for legal services provided by the department’s civilian and uniformed attorneys around the world.

A graduate of Wayne State University, Altenburg earned his J.D. from the University of Cincinnati College of Law. He joined the law firm of Greenberg Traurig in Washington, DC, in 2002, following his retirement from active duty.

For more information, call the Law School at 757-221-1840 (

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