John Radsan, professor at Mitchell Hamline School of Law, and Colonel Patricia G. Baker, Ed.D., who served two military tours in the region for extended periods of time, discuss the historical influences that have led to tensions in the Persian Gulf and what role, if any, the United States should play.

About the Speakers

John Radsan is a professor at Mitchell Hamline School of Law in Saint Paul, Minnesota, where he teaches comparative counterterrorism, constitutional law, criminal law, criminal procedure, evidence, and national security. He is a former federal prosecutor and a former assistant general counsel at the Central Intelligence Agency. His combination of law enforcement experience and intelligence community experience gives him a unique perspective within the legal academy. John’s scholarship on extending the rule of law to intelligence activities has appeared as book chapters and in many journals including the Cardozo Law Review, the Illinois Law Review, the Iowa Law Review, the Journal of National Security Law & Policy, the Michigan Journal of International Law, and the Texas Law Review. He has testified before the House Judiciary Committee concerning the legal implications of the destruction of CIA interrogation tapes and provided a written statement to the House Subcommittee on National Security and Foreign Affairs concerning the legality of armed drones. During his government career, John served on legal assistance projects in Russia, Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan. In addition, he has taught courses in Chile, England, Ireland, Russia, and Turkey. Between his assignments with the Justice Department and the CIA, he managed the Iran Commercial Initiative for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and served as a consultant to Search for Common Ground and the American-Iranian Council. He graduated with honors from Duke University and Harvard Law School.

Colonel Patricia Baker is a career military officer with more than 29 years of service including two combat tours in Iraq. Her first tour as a commander encompassed the first year of Operation Iraqi Freedom from March 2003 to March 2004. As the command and control unit commander in the 4th Infantry Division, Colonel Baker’s primary duties were flight missions for diplomats and strategic military leaders. Upon returning to Iraq for a second tour, Colonel Baker was assigned to the aircrew of Ambassador Crocker from September 2008 to May 2009. Again, her primary duties included flight missions for US and Iraqi diplomats, as well as strategic military leaders. Currently, she is the Chief Financial and Property Officer to the Minnesota Air and Army National Guard charged with oversight of assets and funds of the Minnesota National Guard. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Aviation from the University of North Dakota, a Master of Science in Management from Marquette University, and doctorate in Education from the University of Minnesota. Colonel Baker is a UH-60 [Blackhawk] rated helicopter pilot and a 2019 U.S. Army War College Fellow with the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy of Tufts University.