COL Williams

COL Winston Williams

Department Head


Winston Williams is a Colonel in the U.S. Army and an Associate Professor in the Department of Law at the United States Military Academy, West Point, New York. Upon graduating from Florida A&M University in 1998 with a B.S. in Civil Engineering, Colonel Williams was commissioned as an Engineer officer and served as a platoon leader with the 44th Engineer Battalion, 2nd Infantry Division, Republic of Korea. He also served as an Executive Officer for D Company, 35th Engineer Battalion, Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri. After attending law school, Colonel Williams transitioned into the Judge Advocate General’s Corps in 2004. Since becoming a Judge Advocate, Colonel Williams has served in a number of legal positions including: Chief of Administrative Law, 82nd Airborne Division, Fort Bragg North Carolina; Trial Counsel for 3rd Brigade, 82nd Airborne Division, Tikrit, Iraq; Senior Trial Counsel, 82nd Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, North Carolina; Senior Operational Law Observer/Controller at the Joint Readiness Training Center, Fort Polk, Louisiana, Professor of International and Operational Law at the Judge Advocate General’s Legal Center and School in Charlottesville, Virginia, and Chief of Administrative and Civil Law for 18th Airborne Corps, Fort Bragg, North Carolina. Colonel Williams holds a LL.M in Military Law from the Judge Advocate General's Legal Center and School, and a Juris Doctorate from the University of Tennessee College of Law.

Publications & Presentations

Levee en Masse in Twenty-First Century Armed Conflict, Chapter in Prisoners of War in Contemporary Conflict (Oxford University Press, 2023) (with Professor Robert Lawless).

Breaking the Wall of Silence - Balancing Grand Jury Secrecy with Legitimacy and Transparency in Pitch v. United States, George Mason Law Review (2021) (with Amy McCarthy).

How Do You Like Me Now? Hamdan v. Rumsfeld and the Legal Justifications for Global Targeting, University of Pennsylvania Journal of International Law (2019) (with Shane Reeves & Amy McCarthy).

Complex Battlespaces: The Law of Armed Conflict and the Dynamics of Modern Warfare (Oxford University Press, 2018) (with LTC Christopher Ford).

The Road from Syria to Ukraine, ASIL Insights, Vol. 19, Issue 16 (2015) (with Shane Reeves).

Winston Williams. Review of Harvey, Caroline; Summers, James; White, Nigel D., eds., Contemporary Challenges to the Laws of War: Essays in Honour of Professor Peter Rowe. H-Diplo, H-Net Reviews. April, 2015.

Targeting and the Law of Armed Conflict, Chapter in The Law of Military Operations (Oxford University Press, 2015) (with Colonel Gary Corn & Colonel James Dapper).

Rules of Engagement, Chapter in the OPERATIONAL LAW HANDBOOK (2013).

Multinational Rules of Engagement: Caveats and Friction, ARMY LAW., January 2013, 24.

Training the Rules of Engagement for the Counterinsurgency Fight, Chapter in ASPECTS OF LEADERSHIP (Marine Corps University Press, 2012). A version of this chapter was published as an article in the Army Lawyer, ARMY LAW., January 2012, 42.

COMMANDER'S GUIDE TO BRIGADE LEGAL TEAMS, Center for Army Lessons Learned (CALL) Handbook, No. 11-17 (2011) (with Major Gregory Stricker and Major Matthew Lund).

Check and Checkmate: Congress's Section 5 Powers After Hibbs, 71 TEN. L. REV. 315 (Winter, 2004).