The Neutrality Act, the War in Ukraine, and Modernizing the Law

Event Description


In the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Americans from across the country have responded to the worldwide plea of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy for fighters to enlist in Ukraine's foreign legion and fight the Russian army.  These brave Americans may, however, be blundering into committing a crime under the Neutrality Act of 1794, as amended.  This seminar will analyze the Neutrality Act's complicated text, origins in George Washington’s worldview, rationales, and enforcement history from the Founding Era to today.  The seminar will explore cases from the late 1700’s to recent years, analyze newly introduced legislation, and make recommendations -- both for federal action to clarify and modernize the law, and also to lawyers who might represent Americans thinking of joining the Ukraine war or already in the fight.


Dakota S. Rudesill | Associate Professor of Law at The Ohio State University
Dakota S. Rudesill is a Minnesota State Bar Association member, third generation Minnesotan, and Associate Professor of Law at The Ohio State University.  His research, teaching, and career experience focus on legislation, national security, and professional responsibility.  He has advised senior leaders in all three branches of the federal government.  Earlier in his career, he was a law clerk to then-Chief Judge James Loken of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit.  Prof. Rudesill is one of only a handful of law professors nationwide who have served inside the U.S. Intelligence Community or on a Presidential Transition Team.  He is a Senior Fellow at the Mershon Center for International Security Studies at Ohio State, and recently served as Chair of the National Security Section of the American Association of Law Schools (AALS).  He received his undergraduate degree from St. Olaf College and his J.D. from Yale.

CLE Credits:

1.0 Standard CLE Credits | Event Code: 466533


MSBA/HCBA/RCBA Members: $15
Non-Members: $45 
Law Student: Free

Deadline to register: July 10, 2022

Remote Participation: Remote instructions will be emailed to you the day prior to the event.

Payments:  Please register online or over the phone by credit card whenever possible. If you must pay by check, please use this registration form. If you need assistance, please contact the program manager.

Cancellations: Need to cancel? Please see our cancellation policy.

Accommodations: The MSBA, HCBA, RCBA is committed to creating an inclusive environment in which all members can participate fully. If you need reasonable accommodations to participate in this event, please notify the program manager. Please provide notification at least 72 hours prior to the meeting to allow sufficient time to make arrangements for accommodations. Thank you.

Program Manager:
Kara Haro

Register for this Event


Tuesday, July 12, 2022

12:00 PM to 1:00 PM

Zoom/Live Webinar