tagged w/ assination of American citizens
Does President Obama think that he has the power to kill American citizens on U.S. soil? If he accuses a guy in the Arizona desert or rural Montana of being an Al Qaeda terrorist, is it ever kosher to send a drone over to blow him up, as was done to Anwar al-Awlaki, an American citizen killed in Yemen? Or is it never okay to drone strike an American citizen to death here in the United States?
It's an easy question.
Answering it wouldn't jeopardize national security in any way.
So why do Obama Administration officials keep dodging it?
Asked the question in a Google Plus interview Thursday, Obama himself said, "Well first of all, there has never been a drone used on an American citizen on American soil." Duh. But will there ever be? He went on to say that it's easier to capture accused terrorists in the United States than abroad.
But he still didn't give a straight answer.
Counterterrorism adviser John Brennan won't answer either, despite Senator Rand Paul's repeated inquiries and vow that he'll try to block Brennan's confirmation as CIA director until he gets a response. Here's how Paul phrased the question: "Do you believe that the president has the power to authorize lethal force, such as a drone strike, against a U.S. citizen on U.S. soil?"
He added, "What about the use of lethal force against a non-U.S. person on U.S. soil?"
He's been after these answers awhile, so it's no surprise that he's also produced variations on the question:
Do you believe that the prohibition on CIA participation in domestic law enforcement, first established by the National Security Act of 1947, would apply to the use of lethal force, especially lethal force directed at an individual on a targeting list, if a U.S. citizen on a targeting list was found to be operating on U.S. soil? What if the individual on the targeting list was a non-U.S. person but found to be operating on U.S. soil? Do you consider such an operation to be domestic law enforcement, or would it only be subject to the president's wartime powers?
I can't think of any reason why the Obama Administration would keep dodging this question save one: It believes that, under certain circumstances, perhaps spelled out in a secret legal memo, it is empowered to kill American citizens or non-citizens with drones inside the United States.
And it knows the citizenry would be alarmed by that belief.
Americans know enough about what sometimes happens to innocents when Hellfire missiles explode to want their use restricted to foreign lands where victims can be put in the mental bucket "not like us." Paul, Senator Ron Wyden, and others are right to keep pressing for an answer. They should have more company. When sex scandals occur, the Washington, D.C., media whips itself into a frenzy getting answers to questions like, "Congressman, is that a picture of your penis in the tweet?" They don't rest until they get answers!
"Do you think you can kill Americans on U.S. soil?" would seem to be a more important question.
Anyone want to join me in a media frenzy for answers? If Paul tattoos the question on his butt and tweets out a picture, would that help?
(The terrible truth is that, yes, that would totally help.)
http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2013/02/this-isnt-hard-mr-president-do-you-think-you-can-kill-us-on-american-soil-or-not/273207/Does President Obama think that he has the power to kill American citizens on U.S.... more
The Obama administration, having killed a 16-year-old American boy, refuses to explain why in court.
The boy, Abdulrahman Al-Aulaqi, was born in Denver and lived there until he was 7, when his family moved to Yemen. Like many American kids, he had a Facebook page and a love of the “Simpsons.” No one ever accused him of any wrongdoing. Yet on Oct. 14, 2011, a U.S. drone missile killed him and his teenage cousin while they were eating dinner at an open-air restaurant.
On Dec. 14, 2012, the Justice Department asked a federal court to dismiss a lawsuit in which Abdulrahman’s grandfather, Nasser Al-Aulaqi, is asking for an official explanation about why the boy died.
Until now, only unofficial explanations have been offered.
One anonymous government official told the media Abdulrahman’s death was a mistake. Indefensibly, former White House press secretary and Obama campaign adviser Robert Gibbs said this October, “You should have a far more responsible father” if you don’t want to be killed. (Abdulrahman’s father, Anwar al-Aulaqi, was suspected by the United States of terrorism and was killed by a drone two weeks before his son.) But surely no one would suggest that children are fair game simply because their parents are suspected of wrongdoing.
And if the government made a mistake, it should explain why.
http://libertycrier.com/politics/foreign-policy/opinion-barack-obama-needs-to-explain-drone-strikes/?utm_source=The+Liberty+Crier&utm_campaign=cf25ec5678-The_Liberty_Crier_Daily_News_12_27_2012&utm_medium=emailThe Obama administration, having killed a 16-year-old American boy, refuses to explain... more
TAMPA, November 2, 2012 – It wasn’t so long ago that the following statement could only appear in a dystopian novel or movie script:
The U.S. President has killed an American citizen without due process, without even charging him with a crime. His decision to do this has been challenged by members of neither party.
While the media-fueled frenzy goes on about how supposedly different Romney and the conservatives are from Obama and the liberals, no one even raises an eyebrow about this terrifying political development.
Not even the left, which quite correctly howled at passage of the Patriot Act and the Bush administrations’ other assaults on freedom.
Bush and the Republicans committed egregious crimes against liberty, but did not go near this far in violating the even more important right to life.
The president makes a mockery of the term “due process” by claiming that the requirement is fulfilled by a panel of his own self-appointed czars and cronies reviewing the case. This doesn’t even pass the constitutional test. The panel is exclusively comprised of members of the executive branch of government. Judicial power is explicitly denied to the executive by the plain words of the constitution.
At any previous time in American history, a summary execution by the executive without due process would have been considered cold blooded murder and an act of tyranny. Yet, it has happened in the light of day and neither the political class nor the citizenry has batted an eye.
If even this does not rouse American citizens to stand up to their government, to what would they conceivably say “no?”
Given Romney’s endorsement of the president’s action, there is a well-worn term that applies to both candidates for president. “Unfit for office” has been wasted in the past on extramarital affairs or scandals involving some misappropriation of funds in private business. Like the cry of “wolf!” its impact has been eroded by overuse.
However, it is a gravely serious charge. It denotes a fundamental moral failing that puts a candidate completely beyond consideration.
Read more: http://bit.ly/PN9zAHTAMPA, November 2, 2012 – It wasn’t so long ago that the following... more
In late January, I wrote about the Obama administration's "presidential assassination program," whereby American citizens are targeted for killings far away from any battlefield, based exclusively on unchecked accusations by the Executive Branch that they're involved in Terrorism. At the time, The Washington Post's Dana Priest had noted deep in a long article that Obama had continued Bush's policy (which Bush never actually implemented) of having the Joint Chiefs of Staff compile "hit lists" of Americans, and Priest suggested that the American-born Islamic cleric Anwar al-Awlaki was on that list. The following week, Obama's Director of National Intelligence, Adm. Dennis Blair, acknowledged in Congressional testimony that the administration reserves the "right" to carry out such assassinations.In late January, I wrote about the Obama administration's "presidential... more