Youssef Sneifer


This Comment offers a critique of the national security restrictions contained in the United States policy and regulations and the uncertainty they inject into the commercialization of remote sensing imagery. After providing a brief technical description of remote sensing technology and the market realities associated with remote sensing imagery, this Comment analyzes the legislation and regulations affecting the private sector's commercialization and dissemination of remote sensing imagery with a special emphasis on national security concerns. Specifically, it reviews the Clinton Administration's policy with regard to the commercialization of remote sensing imagery, tracing its origins to the international obligations of the United States and various domestic legislative enactments. In addition, this Comment analyzes the reasons behind the inclusion of national security safeguards in the policy and the effects these safeguards have on the private sector. Further, drawing on lessons from the current export control regime, this Comment critiques the policy from a legal and economic viewpoint. Finally, this Comment maps the contours of a legal definition of "national security," while focusing on the reasons the policy will impede the progress of the private sector and fail to protect the interests it was designed to safeguard.