Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Will the Legal Justification For Assassinations Without Due Process Be Released?

Joe Wright
Activist Post

A heated Senate Judiciary Committee meeting early last month with Attorney General Holder being pressured by Sen.Ted Cruz (see below) put the spotlight on the secret targeted killing program of American citizens by their own government.

There has been virtually unanimous agreement over the lack of transparency of the kill program as outlined in the so-called "targeted killing playbook," by John Brennan.

Sen. Mike Lee urged full release of the Office of Legal Counsel Memorandum on targeted killings to the oversight committee, while AG Holder appeared to flip-flop by adding a tentative "no" to his letter to Sen. Rand Paul stating that killing Americans domestically without due process was constitutional.

Despite promises to release all information, there have instead been 20 instances that members of Congress have asked for the memo without success. The Hill is now reporting that the continued pressure has resulted in a statement from Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy that the members will finally be granted access to these memos. But will the public ever learn the full extent of what they contain?

So far, the only information comes via a 16-page white paper leaked to NBC News. Questions immediately were raised about the meaning of threat "imminence" which Sen. Lee cited from page 7 of the 16-page leaked version.

As noted by The Hill:
The white paper states that a lethal strike against a senior operational leader of al Qaeda — or an affiliated terrorist group — can occur if a three-part test is met: a high-ranking American intelligence official must have determined that the person poses an “imminent threat,” the person’s capture is not feasible and a strike on that person is conducted according to the laws of war governing use of force.
That definition seems to establish the extrajudicial component of the kill program. Holder certainly couldn't answer the question satisfactorily when pointedly asked about it at the last meeting, stating repeatedly, "I'm not sure."

Holder did say that he, like Brennan, thinks there could be a place for judicial review, but remains worried that it would interfere with operations. Even though he stammered through the questioning of Cruz, The Hill notes that he had specified three criteria when first presenting the case for drone strikes against U.S. citizens in a speech at Northwestern University:
...there was a limited open window for attacking the person, a grave possible harm that not attacking the target could have on U.S. civilians, and a strong likelihood that targeting the person would head off a future attack against the United States.
The hearing to address these issues, titled "Drone Wars: The Constitutional and Counterterrorism Implications of Targeted Killing" certainly states the obvious and should give full opportunity for the current administration to defend itself against the Constitution.

Let's see if this "Constitution, Civil Rights and Human Rights subcommittee" becomes just another dog and pony show like The 9/11 Commission, or if there are any representatives remaining to take a stand and truly protect the American people who are next in line for the atrocities thus far committed overseas.

What do you think will be the outcome of this investigation? Will the American people ever learn when it is acceptable to be killed without due process within the borders of their own nation?

Read other articles by Joe Wright Here


This article may be re-posted in full with attribution.


If you enjoy our work, please donate to keep our website going.


Anonymous said...

The justification is national security, end of story.

Anonymous said...

You mean the national socialist's security ....

Anonymous said...

Barry, that you? Its yer cuz, George

Anonymous said...

Well, since it's a government by, of and for The People, I guess it's game on.

For my first extra-judicial killing, I select...

"I will point a gun for my country, but I won't guarantee you which way" -Woody Guthrie

Anonymous said...

A.G. Holder is very familiar with killing citizens! as asst. A.G. under Janet Reno he furnished the search warrant for the murders of the victims at Waco Texas! oh i forgot,it was a month after said murders before he furnished the search warrant!!!!

Anonymous said...

are we to believe that the victims at Waco were posing an immediate threat our national sec.,they were found NOT GUILTY of killing anyone without just cause!! but what the hell,our F.B.I.and Delta Force snipers need some live round practice and what better targets than a bunch of old people and kids!! shag the queen-God save America!!

Anonymous said...

I find it interesting that Waco people were using His true name Yahweh.

Considering the list of people that they have said are terrorists, who knows what lies they will make up to go after people.

Post a Comment