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Old 02-04-2013, 08:36 PM  
BigRedChief BigRedChief is offline
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Justice Department memo reveals legal case for drone strikes on Americans

This is now public info as of tonight.

http://openchannel.nbcnews.com/_news...americans?lite

By Michael Isikoff
National Investigative Correspondent, NBC News


A confidential Justice Department memo concludes that the U.S. government can order the killing of American citizens if they are believed to be “senior operational leaders” of al-Qaida or “an associated force” -- even if there is no intelligence indicating they are engaged in an active plot to attack the U.S.


The 16-page memo, a copy of which was obtained by NBC News, provides new details about the legal reasoning behind one of the Obama administration’s most secretive and controversial polices: its dramatically increased use of drone strikes against al-Qaida suspects, including those aimed at American citizens, such as the September 2011 strike in Yemen that killed alleged al-Qaida operatives Anwar al-Awlaki and Samir Khan. Both were U.S. citizens who had never been indicted by the U.S. government nor charged with any crimes.

The secrecy surrounding such strikes is fast emerging as a central issue in this week’s hearing of White House counterterrorism adviser John Brennan, a key architect of the drone campaign, to be CIA director. Brennan was the first administration official to publicly acknowledge drone strikes in a speech last year, calling them “consistent with the inherent right of self-defense.” In a separate talk at the Northwestern University Law School in March, Attorney General Eric Holder specifically endorsed the constitutionality of targeted killings of Americans, saying they could be justified if government officials determine the target poses “an imminent threat of violent attack"

But the confidential Justice Department “white paper” introduces a more expansive definition of self-defense or imminent attack than described by Brennan or Holder in their public speeches. It refers, for example, to what it calls a “broader concept of imminence” than actual intelligence about any ongoing plot against the U.S. homeland.

Michael Isikoff, national investigative correspondent for NBC News, talks with Rachel Maddow about a newly obtained, confidential Department of Justice white paper that hints at the details of a secret White House memo that explains the legal justifications for targeted drone strikes that kill Americans without trial in the name of national security.

“The condition that an operational leader present an ‘imminent’ threat of violent attack against the United States does not require the United States to have clear evidence that a specific attack on U.S. persons and interests will take place in the immediate future,” the memo states.

Read the entire 'white paper' on drone strikes on Americans

Instead, it says, an “informed, high-level” official of the U.S. government may determine that the targeted American has been “recently” involved in “activities” posing a threat of a violent attack and “there is no evidence suggesting that he has renounced or abandoned such activities.” The memo does not define “recently” or “activities.”
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Old 02-05-2013, 10:21 AM   #61
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Originally Posted by Direckshun View Post
Explain.
They didn't come to the conclusion that one, unidentified man could decide to kill a US citizen without any real limitations.

When they developed their enhanced interrogation program, they included members of both parties from Congress and set up a system of checks and balances within the Executive Branch to prevent abuse.
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Old 02-05-2013, 10:23 AM   #62
Direckshun Direckshun is offline
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When you say things like "checks and balances within the Executive Branch," the Constitution weeps.
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Old 02-05-2013, 10:24 AM   #63
teedubya teedubya is offline
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Basically, this sets the precedence for any militia, or anti-corrupt-government group organization [think Occupy Wall Street] can be labeled as a "terrorist" in the future and be dealt with accordingly.

The US has become the Nazis. If you can't see that path we are going down, by now, I don't know what will open your eyes.
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Old 02-05-2013, 10:28 AM   #64
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Originally Posted by Direckshun View Post
When you say things like "checks and balances within the Executive Branch," the Constitution weeps.
No it doesn't.
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Old 02-05-2013, 10:28 AM   #65
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Originally Posted by teedubya View Post
Basically, this sets the precedence for any militia, or anti-corrupt-government group organization [think Occupy Wall Street] can be labeled as a "terrorist" in the future and be dealt with accordingly.

The US has become the Nazis. If you can't see that path we are going down, by now, I don't know what will open your eyes.
Maybe this isn't such a bad thing afterall.
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Old 02-05-2013, 10:29 AM   #66
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Quote:
Originally Posted by teedubya View Post
Basically, this sets the precedence for any militia, or anti-corrupt-government group organization [think Occupy Wall Street] can be labeled as a "terrorist" in the future and be dealt with accordingly.

The US has become the Nazis. If you can't see that path we are going down, by now, I don't know what will open your eyes.
While I think that is a bit of an extreme thought at this point, you are correct in stating that the door to such thinking has now been offcially opened.
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Old 02-05-2013, 10:35 AM   #67
teedubya teedubya is offline
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Originally Posted by petegz28 View Post
While I think that is a bit of an extreme thought at this point, you are correct in stating that the door to such thinking has now been offcially opened.
Ding. Fries are done.
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Old 02-05-2013, 10:36 AM   #68
teedubya teedubya is offline
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Originally Posted by patteeu View Post
Maybe this isn't such a bad thing afterall.
It's not... until they come for you.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature...Y_LgOuQ#t=134s
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Old 02-05-2013, 11:31 AM   #69
Chocolate Hog Chocolate Hog is offline
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This is disgusting how do people still support this guy?
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Old 02-05-2013, 12:28 PM   #70
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I started a thread about this a couple of years ago and I was very concerned about going down this road and where it would lead. I am still concerned but in the very specific case of Anwar Al-Awlaki that was a justified killing. He was an enemy combatant and had re announced his US citizenship, and was actively trying to plot to kill Americans plus Congress had already given the POTUS and the military the authority to go after and kill AQ which is still in effect today.

I thought this sums it up well..
Quote:
You would have a stronger case if Awlaki had been killed in the U.S. But he was in Yemen — as an avowed member of al-Qaeda, a foreign enemy our nation is at war with under Congress’s authorization of military force. There already is precedent for conducting military operations against Americans under those circumstances, most recently the Supremes’ 2004 Hamdi ruling.

The precedent that would be radical is the one that American citizens carry the protections of the Constitution wherever in the world they go, and however hostile their stance toward the U.S., even in wartime. How far do we take that precedent? Would we have needed an arrest warrant to capture Awlaki? A search warrant to raid his hideout in Yemen? Would he need to be brought to the nearest available magistrate, assigned counsel, and advised of the charges against him? Does he get Miranda warnings? Does it matter the the writ of American courts and the authority of American law-enforcement agents do not apply in Yemen? Does it matter that Congress has authorized military operations and, therefore, that the laws of war apply?

I think you can see Awlaki as an enemy combatant or as a criminal defendant, but you have to follow through with the logic and consequences of either choice. In my mind, he’s an enemy combatant.
As far Samir Khan goes he wasn't the intended target he was just in the wrong place at the wrong time.

My advice to any American in the Middle East is don't hang out with terrorists there is a good chance you will be killed by a drone.
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Old 02-05-2013, 12:40 PM   #71
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This is a Direckshun thread. Are you left wingers on auto-pilot or something?
What does that mean?
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Old 02-05-2013, 12:54 PM   #72
cosmo20002 cosmo20002 is offline
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Originally Posted by teedubya View Post
Basically, this sets the precedence for any militia, or anti-corrupt-government group organization [think Occupy Wall Street] can be labeled as a "terrorist" in the future and be dealt with accordingly.

The US has become the Nazis. If you can't see that path we are going down, by now, I don't know what will open your eyes.
Under the reasoning set forth in the memo, you are completely wrong.
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Old 02-05-2013, 01:09 PM   #73
teedubya teedubya is offline
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Originally Posted by cosmo20002 View Post
Under the reasoning set forth in the memo, you are completely wrong.
You have to see through the bullshit and read between the lines. This is a giant step... the US Govt can legally drone bomb US citizens now. We will most likely start seeing drones just flying over the US patrolling sooner than later.

#murica
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Old 02-05-2013, 01:17 PM   #74
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Quote:
Originally Posted by teedubya View Post
You have to see through the bullshit and read between the lines. This is a giant step... the US Govt can legally drone bomb US citizens now. We will most likely start seeing drones just flying over the US patrolling sooner than later.

#murica
and i'm pretty sure the radar rings will direct the drones to your house first...
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Old 02-05-2013, 01:41 PM   #75
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What does that mean?
You were apparently flabbergasted by the idea that "some" would think an American who goes overseas to join AQ should be off-limits to this kind of attack and followed it up with a sentence that suggests you think the members of "some" are right-wingers. I'm pointing out that the guy who is currently complaining about it, indeed he claims to have been "banging the drum against this longer and harder than anybody else on this board" is Direckshun. It looked like you didn't bother to read the thread and just assumed this was a case of right wingers reacting to perfectly reasonable Obama administration action. It turns out you were wrong on both counts.
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