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In advance of Obama counterterrorism chief John Brennan's confirmation hearing (Thursday) to head the CIA, eleven senators are seeking--demanding--access to the secret legal memo(s) giving the legal rationale for targeted killing (assassination) of U.S. citizens.

Meanwhile, NBC News "obtained" (meaning the government leaked) a Justice Department assassination "white paper," which gives the most detailed legal analysis yet for our government's authority to assassinate U.S. citizens.

Again, however, this latest-discovered articulation of kill criteria do not match what has actually been done in the case of Al-Awlaki.

The right thing would be for the Justice Department to make these memos public--not just to Congress, but to the public.

Let's review what Brennan himself had already put out there in an April 2012: In an extensive speech defending the use of automated drones to target and kill suspected terrorists without due process, including Americans, Brennan listed the main criteria the Administration uses to unilaterally decide who to target and assassinate. Yet, the one of the Americans we know was targeted and killed by a drone, suspected Al Qaeda propagandist Anwar al-Awlaki, meets NONE of Brennan's purported criteria or those listed in the just-released "white paper." This is a fortiori as to Awlaki's son.

(1) Brennan's first criterion was that the target have some particularized plan to attack the U.S., insisting that

. . . the mere possibility that a member of al-Qa’ida might try to attack us at some point in the future
is not enough to warrant a drone strike.

The white paper is (seemingly) even stricter--that the person must pose

an imminent threat of violent attack against the United States.
Even under the elastically twisted definition of "imminent threat" in the white paper: it
does not require the United States to have clear evidence that a specific attack on U.S. persons will take place in the immediate future
. . . there is no credible evidence that al-Awlaki did anything more than generally advance propaganda and indicate a desire to support al-Qaeda. A desire to support a terrorist group is not a particularized plan of attack. None of the justifications for assassinating al-Awlaki put forth by the Obama administration, e.g., he made a martyrdom video, constitute a particularized or imminent plan to attack the U.S. In fact, all of them happened in the past, despite the fact that Brennan claimed yesterday that drones strikes are not about "punishing terrorists for past crimes; we are not seeking vengeance."

(2) Brennan also suggested that a drone assassination would be a appropriate if an

. . .individual is himself an operative—in the midst of actually training for or planning to carry out attacks against U.S. interests.
The white paper is (seemingly) even more stringent: the individual must be
a senior operational leader of al-Qu'ida or an associated force of al-Qu'ida--that is, an al-Qu'ida leader actively engaged in planning operations to kill Americans.
No one has ever asserted that al-Awlaki was himself a member of Al Quadda, much less an operative, only that he supported the organization through his propaganda.

(3) Brennan's third criterion was that

the individual possesses unique operational skills that are being leveraged in a planned attack.
Al-Awlaki fails to meet this criterion as well. Since when is producing hateful videos and advancing abhorrent principles a "unique operational skill."

There is no First Amendment exception for propaganda. If the First Amendment did not apply to propaganda, then the KKK, neo-Nazi groups and any number of detestable Americans who advance hateful messages would be devoid of First Amendment protection.  

Moreover, if propaganda videos are enough to get you on the drone target list, then the makers of Zero Dark Thirty would qualify, which demonstrates the lack of credibility of this criterion and the problem with assassinating American citizens without due process. Despite the Obama administration's constant reassurance of, "Just trust us, we are being careful," the facts speak otherwise.

The newly-released cold, calculating, chilling white paper only makes the stunning scope and reach of Executive authority even scarier. For me, it's another strike against Brennan, not in his favor.  Brennan was rejected when Obama wanted him to be CIA director during his first term--primarily because of his history with the torture program while he was Deputy Executive Director of the CIA.  Since then, although it would have been hard to fathom 4 years ago, Brennan's record of atrocities has gotten worse. He has overseen the drone program and assassination program. Yet there is far less outcry this time around, and Brennan will be confirmed. Congress should at least put a hold on his coronation until the actual memos are provided. Our democracy deserves that, even if we don't deserve him.

UPDATE: More great pieces on other aspects of this issue have been written by Jameel Jaffer of the ACLU, Marcy Wheeler, Conor Friedersdorf of The Atlantic, and Jonathan Turley.

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Comment Preferences

  •  The weakness in Obama's armor (8+ / 0-)

    The president's polical enemies can weaken and hamstring Obama by investigating the use of drone strikes.

    Such an investigation would reveal evidence of extra-judicial and unconstitutional killings, a president assuming powers not granted the president, and a justice dept. once again playing fast and loose with the law.

    Large numbers of Americans oppose the drone killings and might welcome such investigations.  The president has made himself vulnerable by allowing these questionable killings.

    Sadly, the president's enemies do not care about the right and wrongs of the drone killings.  They only want to besmirch Obama

    "The fool doth think he is wise: the wise man knows himself to be a fool" - W. Shakespeare

    by Hugh Jim Bissell on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 06:54:43 AM PST

    •  Don't forget... (9+ / 0-)

      ... Dumbya claimed those extra-legal and unconstitutional powers before Obama was elected, so Obama only inherited those unconstitutional powers.  It always amazed me that no one saw this coming after the way Obama voted for FISA fiasco '08 bill after pledging not to support it with telecom immunity intact..., yet he did vote for it when Nancy "impeachment-if-off-the-table" Pelosi resuscitated that dead bill that had already been voted against.  Why she brought it back remains a mystery to me.

      The fact that Obama - the constitutional law professor who should know better!!! - has not given up those unconstitutional powers voluntarily means he is just as liable for the Bushista lies and war crimes and Dumbya, Dickie, and their lying war criminal cohorts, particularly since he did not end the Iraq or Afghanistan wars in a timely fashion and Gitmo is still open.

      And Congress is liable because they unconstitutionally gave up their constitutionally-mandated war powers and war financing powers in AUMF which Dumbya used to his advantage and which Obama is now using to "justify" drone bombings (?and the "kill list"?).

      We have some serious constitutional issues that need to be rectified.

      I'm sick of attempts to steer this nation from principles evolved in The Age of Reason to hallucinations derived from illiterate herdsmen. ~ Crashing Vor

      by NonnyO on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 07:05:38 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  "Sen. Wyden has demanded review of files... (10+ / 0-)

        & seems to have questions about the legalities of this policy Wyden has sent a memo to the White house that demanded that he and other committee members be allowed to review secret Justice Department legal opinions justifying the killing of American citizens in counterterrorism operations.

        ...The administration has fought in court to keep such legal opinions secret...

        ...Mr. Wyden called the administration’s current stance “unacceptable.” He wrote that only by reviewing the exact language of the legal opinions could he know “whether the president’s power to deliberately kill American citizens is subject to appropriate limitations...”

        •  I hope Wyden makes progress... (4+ / 0-)

          ... on this most unacceptable violation of constitutional powers by a president (past and present).

          As Bruce Fein and John Nichols pointed out, we don't elect monarchs and men who act like monarchs (or worse) can be impeached.  Bush should have been impeached..., and if Obama doesn't stop this continuation of abuse of presidential power by assuming powers not specified in the constitution, I'm not sure our republic can last for long.

          I'm sick of attempts to steer this nation from principles evolved in The Age of Reason to hallucinations derived from illiterate herdsmen. ~ Crashing Vor

          by NonnyO on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 08:13:26 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  The past, present and future Administrations... (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            marina, gerrilea, Bisbonian, NonnyO

            have, and apparently can, interpret the Constitution in ways that remove the traditional protections afforded citizens--without independent validation of Judicial Branch.  

            Whether it's a republican or a Democrat that interprets the Constitution to allow "extra-judicial" lethal force, that's troubling, IMHO.  

            I realize that it's complicated.  I realize that people like Al-Awlaki are dangerous, and pose a threat.  I realize that warfare has changed from conventional battle fields.  

            But, is the solution, the only effective way to stop "national security treats" the unilateral reinterpretation of the Constitution by the Executive branch the only, or the best, way to deal with this?

            In a supposedly tripartite democracy, isn't the role of the Executive Branch primarily to Execute the laws passed by the Legislative Branch--within the framework of the Constitution, as interpreted by the Judicial Branch?  Personally, I'm just a wee bit uncomfortable with one Branch making policy, interpreting it's Constitutionality and then executing the policies--but that's just me.  

            There is supposedly a "check and balance" system that prevents any one Branch from becoming too powerful.  But, as this professor noted in the this expansion in presidential power has created a constitutional imbalance between the executive and legislative branches...

            ...Specifically, I contend that the power of the Presidency has been expanding since the Founding, and that we need to consider the implications of this expansion within the constitutional structure of separation of powers, no matter which party controls the White House...
            •  I agree with you (0+ / 0-)
              Personally, I'm just a wee bit uncomfortable with one Branch making policy, interpreting it's Constitutionality and then executing the policies--but that's just me.
              I'm more than a "wee bit uncomfortable."  It set off alarm bells in my brain that won't stop.

              Just as giving corporations personhood status and "free speech" rights via their money set off more alarm bells.

              Our legislative branch has done nothing to stop them, and since they were first mentioned in the Constitution, they have the responsibility of balancing and checking the other two branches..., when they're not falling down on the job by passing unconstitutional legislation like AUMF, the Patriot Act, MCA '06 & 09, FISA fiasco '08, and allowing the unconstitutional 'office of faith-based initiatives' to be run out of the executive office..., as well as allowing torture to continue by any other name.

              There are MANY things that have made me exceedingly uncomfortable in the last 15 years (I also think Gramm-Leach-Bliley which repealed Glass-Steagall was wrong, and Clinton signed that crap into law which resulted in the '08 financial crash), all of which are unconstitutional and/or illegal in one form or another, or - at the bare minimum, unethical, immoral, unjustified, and/or dishonorable....

              I'm sick of attempts to steer this nation from principles evolved in The Age of Reason to hallucinations derived from illiterate herdsmen. ~ Crashing Vor

              by NonnyO on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 05:38:09 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

    •  "Extra-judicial" and "Unconstitutional"... (13+ / 0-)

      ...are powerful words and concepts in a country that claims to follow a rule of law.  Either the US Constitution is a "Quaint" and totally outdated document, or it is the Law of the land--the framework within legally valid governmental enforcement takes place.  

      It seems that some members of the Legislative Branch are a wee bit concerned about the Constitutional issues:

      Pressure for turning over the Justice Department memos on targeted killings of Americans appears to be building on Capitol Hill amid signs that Brennan will be grilled on the subject at his confirmation hearing before the Senate Intelligence Committee on Thursday.

      On Monday, a bipartisan group of 11 senators -- led by Democrat Ron Wyden of Oregon — wrote  a letter to President Barack Obama asking him to release all Justice Department memos on the subject. While accepting that “there will clearly be circumstances in which the president has the authority to use lethal force” against Americans who take up arms against the country,  it said, “It is vitally important ... for Congress and the American public to have a full understanding of how  the executive branch interprets the limits and boundaries of this authority...”

      The Executive Branch may interpret the Constitutionality of policies it institutes; however, when and if, serious challenges arise, particularly from the Legislative Branch, sometimes the Supreme Court is called to rule on Constitutionality.

      The "war on terror" has increasingly led to unilateral Executive actions, based on a current Administration's interpretation of Constitutional limitations.  

      Although "There are Obama faces any number of perilous foreign policy and national security challenges with the potential to wreak havoc" there will also be calls by the legislature and by civil liberties advocates to question whether actions and policies are undertaken within a Constitutional framework.

      It's a conumdrum with no easy or widely acceptable answers--as always, there is a delicate balance between maintaining national security & protecting US citizens, and staying within the bounds of the US Constitution while doing so.

      ..But every president faces international threats and conflicts...

      As it stands now, the Obama administration, which vastly stepped up the use of drones and targeted killings over the past four years, has done little to assuage the concerns of outsiders about the program's legality or utility. Indeed, the drone program's components are so secret that the administration routinely refuses to acknowledge that it even exists.

      In a second term, that stonewalling may no longer be possible, particularly as new questions are raised about whether the program is legal, or if it even works....

      These Constitutional questions aren't going to go away, as long as the policies in question continue.  

      Maybe they shouldn't go away, because we need to remember:  This Administration will only be in place for four years. After that, there are no guarantees regarding how future Administrations could build upon and/or expand precedents set by this Administration's national security policies/actions.  

      •  If the GOP wants to monkeywrench the (3+ / 0-)

        I have a hard time imagining our current congress being overly concerned with the health of constitutional law.

        Rather, the primary goal of the current congress seems to be to hamper, impede, and gum up the function of the Obama administration.

        And a prolonged public congressional hearings into the actions of the Obama administration in unilaterally targeting and killing foreigners and Americans abroad would go a long way to accomplishing that goal.

        Obama has made himself vulnerable to such attacks, but we the people will bear most of the burden.

        "The fool doth think he is wise: the wise man knows himself to be a fool" - W. Shakespeare

        by Hugh Jim Bissell on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 07:48:09 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Fiat justitia ruat caelum. (9+ / 0-)

          Let justice be done though the heavens fall.  If we are not a nation governed by the rule of law, then everything else is just window dressing.

          I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just; that his justice cannot sleep forever. ~Thomas Jefferson

          by bobdevo on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 07:59:30 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  Again-this Administration will be gone in 4 years (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          gerrilea, Bisbonian

          ...but, the policies will remain.  

          Yes, the GOPers will seize on any opportunity to challenge this Administration.  If there isn't anything they can seize on--they will make something up, and the media will make it the new focus of their reporting.  

          That should not prevent we the People form asking questions about the legalities of policies that could possibly endanger them, in the name of "national security".  

          If Administrations can interpret the Constitution to allow for "extra-judicial" (killing without trial) assassination of American citizens abroad--who can guarantee that future Administrations won't interpret the authority to allow targeting of American citizens who are deemed to be a "security threat"  with drone attacks in the US?  

          Are there guarantees against this?  I don't know--does anyone?, since the documents are secret, and the Administration won't release them, even to Congress.  

          •  I agree entirely (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            kurious, Bisbonian

            The policy - which I think was started in the Bush administration, but greatly expanded by the Obama team - is horribly short-sighted.

            I think it is entirely likely that the GOP could raise a congressional hue and cry about the illegality of this policy and calls for impeachment, etc., as a way of scoring points against Obama, and then turn around and carry on the exact same methods and even expand them to cover "criminals" here inside the US when one of their own gets to be president.

            "The fool doth think he is wise: the wise man knows himself to be a fool" - W. Shakespeare

            by Hugh Jim Bissell on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 08:48:46 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  What exactly would be considered an Impeachable... (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              aliasalias, gerrilea

              ...offense?  Killing American citizens without due process?  Claiming a secret legal justification for such an action.  Claiming the power of the courts and ignoring the constitutionally mandated powers of the Congress to check Executive power?  We're not talking about lying about Oval office blow jobs here.

              Btw, this did NOT start in the Bush administration.  The groundwork of claiming extra-judicial powers to eavesdrop and spy on Americans without obtaining a warrant is a FAR CRY from claiming the power to kill Americans without due process.  this is PURELY a construct of the current administration, as hard as that might be for you to accept.

              •  I do see the connections. (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                gerrilea

                It's not difficult at all to see this as the next chapter of a narrative started in 2001.

                if necessary for years; if necessary, alone

                by SouthernLiberalinMD on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 01:33:24 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Elizabeth Holtzman... (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  gerrilea, aliasalias

                  "The Impeachment of George W. Bush"

                  http://www.amazon.com/...

                  This book focuses on four articles of impeachment: The Offense of Wiretapping Surveillance in Defiance of the Law; the Offence of Lying and Inducing America to Support a War; The Offense of Reckless Indifference to the Lives and Welfare of American Troops; The Offense of Torture in Violation of U.S. Laws and Treaties. It also provides an invaluable guide to how citizens can get involved in campaigning for impeachment, as well as an important historical analysis of impeachments past. The publication of this book is a summons to action in this process.
                  Funny, there were some credible Dems who were making a valid case for impeaching the former president regarding warrant-less wiretapping.  Wonder why, if this is the 'next chapter of a narrative (translated:  escalation of a policy considered an offense worthy of impeachment), it's unthinkable to consider impeachment (not necessarily Senate conviction) based on this escalation?

                  I'm not making the argument that there hasn't been an expansion of dubious policies which were instituted after 9/11.  Obviously, there has been.  Had Holtzman carried the day back in 2006, this current chapter would never have been written.  Now we're left with the sad reality that if we once thought an impeachment of Bush was possible based on illegal eavesdropping, how can we not think the same of the current president for expanding those policies to include due process-free assassinations of Americans, making Bush look like a Peeping Tom in comparison?

                  Heresy.  

                  •  Hey, no argument here. (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    4kedtongue, gerrilea

                    If anybody ever got impeached for this sort of thing. Apparently having sex with interns is the only real impeachable offense.

                    The "sad truth" is actually that an impeachment of Bush was not possible; both Nancy Pelosi and Barack Obama threw that idea out.

                    Although, in the interests of strict accuracy, you are putting words into my mouth as I said nothing about impeachment of anybody. Still, as it happens I agree with you, so no harm, no foul.

                    if necessary for years; if necessary, alone

                    by SouthernLiberalinMD on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 02:11:43 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

      •  forget fearing what may happen 4 years from now (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        gerrilea

        Obama should not have this authority right now and if we did abide by Constitutional law it would NOT be happening.

        But this administration doesn't do that and it's a shame people would have to see this thru the lens of 'think of some Republican in 4 years with this power' in order to be worried, worry NOW.
        This administration, not some future one is doing this and keep in mind there are NO geographical limits for this obscene power, one that does not belong in the hands of any one man (or woman).
        Kill anyone anywhere on secret evidence that will remain secret from any form of oversight should alarm everyone.

        I didn't know what t o expect but I was impressed with Rachel Maddow's show about this...
        http://openchannel.nbcnews.com/...

        without the ants the rainforest dies

        by aliasalias on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 12:03:45 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Agree-If a policy is wrong, it is wrong no... (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          gerrilea, aliasalias

          matter which party implements it, IMHO.  

          As for geographic limits; drones are here too, though currently not armed.  The ACLU reports that U.S. law enforcement is greatly expanding its use of domestic drones for surveillance. (emphasis mine)

          ...Routine aerial surveillance would profoundly change the character of public life in America....

          ...Rules must be put in place to ensure that we can enjoy the benefits of this new technology without bringing us closer to a “surveillance society” in which our every move is monitored, tracked, recorded, and scrutinized by the government. Drone manufacturers are also considering offering police the option of arming these remote-controlled aircraft with (nonlethal for now) weapons like rubber bullets, Tasers, and tear gas. Read the ACLU’s full report on domestic drones here...
           

    •  Do you have any polls that say 'large numbers?' (0+ / 0-)

      I did a google search on 'drone warfare polls' and not one on the front page had even a plurality opposing their use.

      I see what you did there.

      by GoGoGoEverton on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 08:31:43 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Sorry, I do not (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Bisbonian

        Sorry, I have no poll numbers on public sentiment regarding the drone strikes.  

        You may well be correct that a greater portion of the public favors the drone strikes than opposes it.  However, such polls do not contradict my statement that "Large numbers of Americans oppose the drone killings".

        And keep in mind that the American invasion of Iraq at one time enjoyed widespread popularity and favorability.  Nonetheless, it became an Archilles Heel for the Bush admin.

        "The fool doth think he is wise: the wise man knows himself to be a fool" - W. Shakespeare

        by Hugh Jim Bissell on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 08:41:14 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Re: "Authority to target Americans with drones..." (8+ / 0-)

    As this BBC article notes, the memo discusses...

    ...US officials can authorise the killing of Americans abroad if they are leaders of al-Qaeda or its allies, according to the document obtained by NBC News...

    While, IMHO, this is disturbing enough, I have a further question:

    Jesselyn, do you know if the (white paper and/or) memo excludes using drones to target American citizens in the US, under what the government could interpret as an "imminent threat"?

  •  You forget the "bad guy" exception (16+ / 0-)

    i.e. "We're telling you he's a bad guy, so STFU and let us kill him."

    Sadly, it seems to be enough for a lot of people. Calling someone a "terrorist" seems to make everything okay.

    "He who fights monsters should see to it that he himself does not become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you."

    by Hayate Yagami on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 07:03:47 AM PST

    •  Yes, that's the rub. (9+ / 0-)

      And even if I were comfortable in thinking that the Obama Administration would be responsible in its use of the assassination power (which I am decidedly not), how many of us would be comfortable with Dick Cheney or Sarah Palin or Paul Ryan or Tagg Romney having that power?

      I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just; that his justice cannot sleep forever. ~Thomas Jefferson

      by bobdevo on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 07:47:17 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I don't suppose any Wall Street or international (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        aliasalias, gerrilea, Hayate Yagami

        bankers that enabled the multi-Trillion mortgage/derivative crisis, hiding (from taxation) hundreds of billions overseas in Swiss banks or Cayman Is., will ever need to worry about drones coming their way, or taking out their banks or mega-yachts.  Doing billions or trillions in damage to the US economy and leaving citizens and even cities destitute, via sophisticated white-collar crime, seems to not merit much in the way of vigorous legal pursuit.  Rapping a few banker knuckles symbolically, maybe delaying bonus payments, perhaps 1 or 2  forced resignations to teach 'them' a lesson, making big banks swallow the most problematic banks, seems sufficient to our DOJ.

        And those multi-billionaire Mexican/S. Ameican drug lords who do love our American tactical weapons, also have jumped big time into the use of low-flying, low-profile drones to convey their wares across the border. They seem to love and use our high-tech. Our War on Drugs seems most focused on catching and imprisoning American Citizen users, taking & auctioning off property, and lower level drug dealers, rather than shutting down the sources and those enabling the supply chain. I don't suppose our drones will be targeted at their drones in the air or in the water, or be sent down to assassinate those lethal-drug lords, not even against the narco-terrorists who like employing kidnapping, rapes and mass killings to terrorize investigators (some US or allies), journalists (some US or allies), police, military advisers and contractors (some US and allies), and entire towns.  Is it ridiculus to wonder if there's still some black ops budget-funding going on supported by the narco-trade, like Oliver North helped to run during Reagan-era?

        With domestic police deploying drone units, how long until they too want the armed versions so they can engage in tracking & interventions, hot pursuits of drug dealers, 'known' killers, 'eco-terrorists', perhaps even 'Occupy' econ-protestors, Wal*mart protestors, labor activists, etc.? My prediction is within 2 to 4 years we'll see these portrayed as justified and desperately needed in all 50 states to help The War on Crime.  Maybe we'll want a 'citizen watch' fleet of drones to keep watch on our government drones.

        When life gives you wingnuts, make wingnut butter!

        by antirove on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 11:02:35 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  You posted a link which counters your argument (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    FG, Dr Swig Mcjigger

    That Al-Awlaki doesn't fit the criteria of the white paper. I'm on an iPad which makes linking difficult but your link associated with his name took me to the NY Times article which gives the governments position that he was no longer a propagandist and which also links to court filings. Personally I have a problem with this as I did when it was a Bush policy but if you're going to argue a point against this particular killing, you should accurately reflect the reasoning of the administration's action.

    Here is a quote from that article (which is, agai, linked in your diary:

    From a Propagandist to an ‘Operational’ Terrorist

    In August 2009, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, a Nigerian graduate student, traveled to Yemen and began visiting mosques, asking where to find Mr. Awlaki. Their intensive plotting together for the next five months, and how they tried to pull off a suicidal bombing of a jet bound for Detroit that Christmas, has been laid out publicly as a result of Mr. Abdulmutallab’s trial in October 2011.

    By spelling out the case against Mr. Abdulmutallab, the Obama administration also went a long way toward explaining why officials decided that Mr. Awlaki, a United States citizen, had evolved from a propagandist to an “operational” terrorist. That, in turn, led to their extraordinary — and still officially unacknowledged — decision to kill Mr. Awlaki, without a trial, in a drone strike

    The story was portrayed in two court filings supporting prosecutors’ request that a judge sentence Mr. Abdulmutallab to life in prison. They contained evidence, largely based on several months of extensive conversations he had with interrogators in early 2010, that prosecutors would have introduced at his trial had he not abruptly pleaded guilty on its second day.

    The filings say Mr. Abdulmutallab, after making contact with Mr. Awlaki, spent three days at the cleric’s house discussing martyrdom and “jihad,” or Islamist holy war. It said that Mr. Awlaki introduced him to a top bomb maker for Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, the Yemen affiliate of the terrorist group, approved a proposal to blow up a plane, and instructed him to attack an American airliner.

    The failed attack set off a wave of fear, helping to derail the Obama administration’s plans to prosecute five accused conspirators in the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. It also ignited a public debate about reading terrorism suspects the Miranda warning about their rights against self-incrimination, and prompted a secret decision by the administration to try to kill Mr. Awlaki.

    •  Here is the link (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      kurious, Dr Swig Mcjigger

      http://topics.nytimes.com/...

      Now there is an issue as to whether he was engaged in future plots against American targets even if he was involved in the Abdulmutallab plot. If drone killings could not be used as punishment for past acts but only to prevent future acts, what proof do we have that he was actively engaged in operations?

      Moreover , shouldn't there be some type of oversight of these decisions by the judicial branch?

      Again, I have problems with this policy but I don't agree that this particular case doesn't fit the criteria.

      •  The constitution is perfectly clear on this issue: (14+ / 0-)
        No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury . . . nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law;
        Contrary to Mr. Holder's misrepresentations, due process of law = judicial process, not a team meeting in the Oval office over pizza.

        For example, had Abdulmutallab testified before a Grand Jury concerning Awlaki's actions beyond mere speech that would be one thing.  But to base the decision to assassinate an American citizen based on material obtained through interrogations (and God knows just what that means) without review by a court is manifestly unconstitutional.

        I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just; that his justice cannot sleep forever. ~Thomas Jefferson

        by bobdevo on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 07:44:23 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I agree, as I've said. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Dr Swig Mcjigger

          And I think it is inconsistent to argue "enemy combatants" have a right to trial but then argue that they can be killed when not on the battlefield. And I don't see a difference that one is an American.

          My point was that under the criteria set forth, Al-Awlaki met them.

          But then, again, inherent in this policy is the fact that there is no oversight. If you're going to put someone on a kill list, there should be either a trial in absentia or at least some type of judicial finding.  

          And I don't think we can lay this blame on Holder. Obama is the CIC. My one criticism of the man is how he has caved in on principles he once espoused and this is one of them.

          •  There is a difference being an American citizen... (6+ / 0-)

            and I'll explain briefly why:

            The constitutional protections of the 5th Amendment apply to all persons (not citizens) within the US or its territories.  Persons outside the US have no such guarantee, however, an American citizen ANYWHERE ON EARTH is entitled to constitutional protection with respect to the actions of the United States of America.

            While it may be horrific for the US to kill civilians with predator drones . . . it is UNCONSTITUTIONAL for them to kill American citizens that way, and therefore an impeachable offense.

            I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just; that his justice cannot sleep forever. ~Thomas Jefferson

            by bobdevo on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 08:57:49 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  of course this administration disagrees (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              bobdevo, gerrilea

              with that quaint document.
              http://openchannel.nbcnews.com/...

              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.
              As in Holder’s speech, the confidential memo lays out a three-part test that would make targeted killings of American lawful:  In addition to the suspect being an imminent threat, capture of the target must be “infeasible, and the strike must be conducted according to “law of war principles.” But the memo elaborates on some of these factors in ways that go beyond what the attorney general said publicly. For example, it states that U.S. officials may consider whether an attempted capture of a suspect  would pose an “undue risk” to U.S. personnel involved in such an operation. If so, U.S. officials could determine that the capture operation of the targeted American would not be feasible, making it lawful for the U.S. government to order a killing instead, the memo concludes.
              The undated memo is entitled “Lawfulness of a Lethal Operation Directed Against a U.S. Citizen who is a Senior Operational Leader of Al Qa’ida or An Associated Force.”  It was provided to members of the Senate Intelligence and Judiciary committees in June by administration officials on the condition that it be kept confidential and  not discussed publicly.

              without the ants the rainforest dies

              by aliasalias on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 12:13:56 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

        •  I do wish Alwaki had been indicted first. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          bobdevo, Dr Swig Mcjigger

          IMO that would've put to rest most concerns except for those who completely oppose military actions.

          I see what you did there.

          by GoGoGoEverton on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 08:39:39 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  My biggest question (4+ / 0-)

    Why is there no recommended diary on this subject?  Has the community lost its own mojo?

    I remember a time when Yoo memos and Bush error terror policies were deemed impeachable by this community.

    Now, policies that are even worse (assassination of American citizens without due process) are basically ignored?

    Or did I just miss the recced diary?

    "Small Businesses Don't Build Levees" - Melissa Harris Perry

    by justmy2 on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 08:31:36 AM PST

    •  It's disagreement on the 'even worse' part. (0+ / 0-)

      Same way the polls look on the matter.

      I see what you did there.

      by GoGoGoEverton on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 08:32:46 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Is assassination better than torture? (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        gooderservice, gerrilea, aliasalias

        Are people making that argument here?  If so, I would welcome the discussion.  Feel free to direct me as appropriate.

        "Small Businesses Don't Build Levees" - Melissa Harris Perry

        by justmy2 on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 08:50:32 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I think torture is always wrong. Killing (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          FG, gerrilea

          isn't always. Assassination is a scary word like 'drone' so I suppose we could debate/discuss that but I would prefer to stick with 'killing'.

          I see what you did there.

          by GoGoGoEverton on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 08:54:00 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Killing is a scary word to me as well (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            gooderservice, gerrilea, aliasalias

            but that is besides the point.

            We aren't talking about killing a foreign adversary in the midst of a fire fight.  We are talking about the targeted killing of an American citizen without an sort of due process OR even committing a criminal act.  The memo justifies killing those who are believed through intelligence to be associated with someone that has said something offensive at some point in time.

            Do you believe that assassinating someone that has not committed a crime or is actively in the process of planning one is not worse than torture?

             

            "Small Businesses Don't Build Levees" - Melissa Harris Perry

            by justmy2 on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 09:11:50 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  And in that case, why bother with torture. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              gerrilea

              Just assassinate.  

            •  Do you believe in the concept of stochastic (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Dr Swig Mcjigger

              terrorism?

              I see what you did there.

              by GoGoGoEverton on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 10:10:20 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Sure... (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                aliasalias, gerrilea

                See how easy it is to answer the question.

                Now you try.

                1.  Do you believe that assassinating someone that has not committed a crime or is actively in the process of planning one is not worse than torture? (for instance, the son of someone involved in stochastic terrorism?

                2.  Do you believe in assassinating someone with due process? (i.e. no indictment, no day in court, no non-executive oversight?)

                "Small Businesses Don't Build Levees" - Melissa Harris Perry

                by justmy2 on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 10:28:33 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Clarifications before I answer: (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Dr Swig Mcjigger

                  1. Do you mean convicted or committed? What is your definition of 'actively'? Do you believe Al Qaeda is an organization that a state can be at war with?

                  2. Yes, if they are members of an enemy military organization.

                  I see what you did there.

                  by GoGoGoEverton on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 10:36:07 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Clarification (2+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    aliasalias, gerrilea

                    1.  Not committed or convicted...as could be the case with those associated to organizations, but have not renounced said organizations goals.

                    2.  Thanks for clarifying.  So you believe in assassinating say member of the Black Panthers in the sixties after Hoover declared them enemies of the state.   Or the weather underground.   By joining an organization ordained as "the enemy" by the US Government, you believe that designation provides the Government the right to engage in assassination.  I couldn't disagree with you more, but that is the purpose of dialogue.    

                    I believe that American citizens have rights, until based on due process they have been proven to has committed a crime that is punishable by death.  But hey, that is just me reading the constitution.

                    But I know, the constitution is a historical document..not a suicide pact...yada yada yada...
                     

                    "Small Businesses Don't Build Levees" - Melissa Harris Perry

                    by justmy2 on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 11:37:13 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

              •  the concept of stochastic terrorism (0+ / 0-)

                only applies to white people on this blog. If you were to post a diary linking a radical anti abortion preacher who wailed about "the new American Holocaust" and "Murder of the innocents" and "Blood on the hands of abortion doctors" to a clinic bombing or an assault on a Dr., you'd make the rec list for sure, even if the Doctor didn't even meet the clinic bomber and didn't provide him with any specific guidance.

        •  That's not the point. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          gerrilea

          Suppose it's not "even worse." So what? If it's "just as bad," that's enough reason to decry it, regardless of who is doing it.

          And, in fact, "even worse" or "just as bad" are neither of them the point. "Unconstitutional" is the point. (I might say "unAmerican" as well.)

          if necessary for years; if necessary, alone

          by SouthernLiberalinMD on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 01:38:40 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  silence is complicity (7+ / 0-)

      I do not support in any manner this unconstitutional policy.  It should be investigated and put an end to.  Period.  This is the type of thing that brings down empires.  We are supposed to be the world's guide to justice, not injustice.

      "Small Businesses Don't Build Levees" - Melissa Harris Perry

      by justmy2 on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 08:34:12 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  IOKIYAD. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      gerrilea

      That's all.

      We're on the blue team. We wear the blue jerseys.

      if necessary for years; if necessary, alone

      by SouthernLiberalinMD on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 01:37:20 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  It will come down to how the airstrikes are used. (0+ / 0-)

    Sort of like the gun issue. If an airstrike targets and kills a US citizen stateside or in a country where the majority of people believe an arrest or capture could've been arranged, I think you would find public support for this to swing wildly negative.

    I do think it's ironic though that some people here who stridently oppose the airstrike policy because they're sure the gov will misuse it, are just fine with gun registration, confiscation, etc because they're sure the government won't misuse it.

    I see what you did there.

    by GoGoGoEverton on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 08:34:48 AM PST

    •  I simply cannot agree with this mentality or (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      aliasalias

      position.

      It will come down to how the airstrikes are used
      Since when have our LEO been unable to capture people here? What eminent threat does any American pose?

      Has war been declared against the American People and I wasn't told?  Are the American People now the enemy?

      Can Whistleblowers be targeted for speaking? Or newspapers for publishing the crimes of our government? Will that be deemed an "eminent threat"?

      Those damn Occupiers won't leave. Send in the drones!

      USING MILITARY ASSETS to kill American Citizens on US soil is not acceptable, period.

      The people proposing these things should be considered traitors and arrested.  Men of Reason tried to warn us.

      That said, what will a firearm do against a Drone? Unless you hunt down and shoot the drone operator, you're dead in 20 minutes or less.  And I'm more inclined to believe they are computer controlled and directed these days, no operator needed.

      As for the cognitive dissonance here, it IS frightening.

      -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

      by gerrilea on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 10:36:14 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I'm not sure where we're disagreeing: (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        gerrilea
        Since when have our LEO been unable to capture people here? What eminent threat does any American pose?

        Has war been declared against the American People and I wasn't told?  Are the American People now the enemy?

        None, which is why if there was an airstrike here against a citizen, or even in a country where we have extradition agreements, people would go nuts.
        Can Whistleblowers be targeted for speaking? Or newspapers for publishing the crimes of our government? Will that be deemed an "eminent threat"?

        Those damn Occupiers won't leave. Send in the drones!

        Don't seem to be eminent threats.
        USING MILITARY ASSETS to kill American Citizens on US soil is not acceptable, period.
        The people proposing these things should be considered traitors and arrested.  Men of Reason tried to warn us.
        I agree.
        That said, what will a firearm do against a Drone? Unless you hunt down and shoot the drone operator, you're dead in 20 minutes or less.  And I'm more inclined to believe they are computer controlled and directed these days, no operator needed.
        I didn't bring up firearms in reference to defense against drones, I'm bringing up the fact that some (obv not you) completely trust the government to the point that they are willing to have the populace completely disarmed. But if an admin can take out an Al-Qaeda operative in the badlands of Yemen that happens to also be a US citizen and thinks that was legal, look out they're going to drone occupiers next?

        I see what you did there.

        by GoGoGoEverton on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 10:43:00 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Al-Awlaki gave up (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cryonaut

    U.S. citizenship when he announced he was at war with us.

    In March 2010, a tape featuring al-Aulaqi was released in which he urged Muslims residing in the U.S. to attack their country of residence. In the video, he stated:

    To the Muslims in America, I have this to say: How can your conscience allow you to live in peaceful coexistence with a nation that is responsible for the tyranny and crimes committed against your own brothers and sisters? I eventually came to the conclusion that jihad (holy struggle) against America is binding upon myself just as it is binding upon every other able Muslim
    Under the U.S. code from that moment on he was just another terrorist.

    He was conclusively linked with at least three violent acts against U.S. and U.K. citizens and I am sure that the NSA and the President can provide evidence that his efforts were ongoing at the time of his death.

    "Fascism is attracting the dregs of humanity- people with a slovenly biography - sadists, mental freaks, traitors." - ILYA EHRENBURG

    by durrati on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 08:53:28 AM PST

    •  And his minor son? (4+ / 0-)

      "We refuse to fight in a war started by men who refused to fight in a war." -freewayblogger

      by Bisbonian on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 10:31:23 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Not the target (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Dr Swig Mcjigger

        why would he be, pettiness?

        "Fascism is attracting the dregs of humanity- people with a slovenly biography - sadists, mental freaks, traitors." - ILYA EHRENBURG

        by durrati on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 12:52:13 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  They won't tell us (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          gerrilea, Hayate Yagami

          "(1) It is unknown whether the U.S. targeted the teenager or whether he was merely “collateral damage.” The reason that’s unknown is because the Obama administration refuses to tell us. Said the Post: “The officials would not discuss the attack in any detail, including who the target was.” So here we have yet again one of the most consequential acts a government can take — killing one of its own citizens, in this case a teenage boy — and the government refuses even to talk about what it did, why it did it, what its justification is, what evidence it possesses, or what principles it has embraced in general for such actions. Indeed, it refuses even to admit it did this, since it refuses even to admit that it has a drone program at all and that it is engaged in military action in Yemen. It’s just all shrouded in total secrecy."

          "We refuse to fight in a war started by men who refused to fight in a war." -freewayblogger

          by Bisbonian on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 02:12:53 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  They should tell us (0+ / 0-)

            But do you seriously think he was the target there? It seems highly unlikely since he had no military or informational significance and that the intentional killing of an innocent minor  has the potential to be a p.r. disaster of the highest order. It seems far more likely that he just associated himself with the wrong people and the result was his death. I am not particularly upset by this.

            •  "I am not particularly upset by this", that's the (0+ / 0-)

              problem.

              It seems far more likely that he just associated himself with the wrong people
              HIS father, he was with his father.

              So, when the gov't says you're the terrorist, should we care when your wife, daughter or family member, whom lives with you gets killed????

              Because they associated themselves with the "wrong people"?????

              -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

              by gerrilea on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 02:36:20 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  wrong (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Dr Swig Mcjigger

                he was killed two weeks after his father...

                http://www.cnn.com/...

                "Fascism is attracting the dregs of humanity- people with a slovenly biography - sadists, mental freaks, traitors." - ILYA EHRENBURG

                by durrati on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 02:40:19 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

              •  No he wasn't with his father (0+ / 0-)

                His father was a a grease spot on the desert floor by that time. He was in a vehicle containing Al Qaeda operatives, including Ibrahim al-Bana., the media chief of the Yemeni AQ branch.  Yes, I would call that associating with the wrong people. Just as it is unwise to get into a car being driven by a known alcoholic with beer on his breath, it is dangerous to get into a car with known terrorists in  region where both the local government and the US government have been carrying out anti terrorist strikes.

                The wrong people for sure.

                •  Yep, I was wrong, he went looking for his father. (3+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Bisbonian, Hayate Yagami, aliasalias

                  http://articles.washingtonpost.com/...

                  Nasser al-Awlaki said Abdulrahman was in the first year of secondary school when he left Sanaa to find his father. He wrote a note to his mother, saying he missed his father and wanted to see him. The teenager traveled to the family’s tribal home in southern Yemen, but Anwar al-Awlaki was killed Sep. 30 in Yemen’s northern Jawf province, about 90 miles east of the capital.
                  So, the way to erase the collateral damage numbers is to claim they're all terrorists, got it.

                  I keep forgetting.

                  Tutu: Bush, Blair should face trial at the Hague

                  Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Desmond Tutu called Sunday for Tony Blair and George Bush to face prosecution at the International Criminal Court for their role in the 2003 U.S.-led invasion of Iraq

                  Tutu, the retired Anglican Church's archbishop of South Africa, wrote in an op-ed piece for The Observer newspaper that the ex-leaders of Britain and the United States should be made to "answer for their actions."

                  So, since we're harboring a known War Criminal, should we be targeted and killed by an outside military force, it's okay???

                  -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

                  by gerrilea on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 03:09:59 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  more intellectual dishonesty from you (0+ / 0-)

                    hardly surprising, though.

                    No one's claiming this;
                    S

                    o, the way to erase the collateral damage numbers is to claim they're all terrorists, got it.

                    I keep forgetting

                    The argument is that the son of Al-Awlaki was in fact collateral damage and not a terrorist. This is the very opposite of the position that you are attributing to me.
                    •  It's official US policy (2+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      aliasalias, gerrilea

                      http://www.dailykos.com/... (sourcing in original diary)

                      Mr. Obama embraced a disputed method for counting civilian casualties that did little to box him in. It in effect counts all military-age males in a strike zone as combatants, according to several administration officials, unless there is explicit intelligence posthumously proving them innocent.

                      "He who fights monsters should see to it that he himself does not become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you."

                      by Hayate Yagami on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 04:23:54 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Not exactly relevent here (0+ / 0-)

                        That's the rationale for making the strike in the first place. Arguably a sensible policy, since if you had to make 100% sure there was not one civilian combatant, you could almost never make a strike. It's not the rationale for justifying the killing afterwards, as the poster above was claiming and apparently, attributing said policy to me.

                        •  You're right I did do that, didn't I? Apologies. (0+ / 0-)

                          You did however justify the murder of an innocent child because "he went with bad company", to paraphrase you, correct?  You then tried patronizing me by telling my my mother surely taught me better than to hang around with bad crowds.

                          You blamed the victim.

                          And it is exactly relevant, you justify the killing of innocent Americans through the use of drones by the CIA, an intelligence agency, not even our military.  Who gave them the hardware? Who authorized the use of military hardware by a civilian intelligence agency? The POTUS!

                          The US CONSTITUTION:

                          Article I, Section 8, Clause 11 of the United States Constitution, sometimes referred to as the War Powers Clause, vests in the Congress the power to declare war, in the following wording:

                              [Congress shall have Power...] To declare War, grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal, and make Rules concerning Captures on Land and Water;

                          Note it doesn't say the POTUS or a civilian agency under his direct command may wage war in foreign lands.

                          Or is the argument now going to be "it was a police action" akin to Law Enforcement????  Then we'd have to ask who's law is being enforced here, surely not "We The People's Law".

                          -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

                          by gerrilea on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 05:50:15 PM PST

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  Nope (0+ / 0-)

                            I didn't justify the murder because there was no evidence that there was  any murder that needed.   Al-Awlaki Jr. wasn't murdered. I see no evidence to support that theory. Most logically, he was collateral damage, because he voluntarily got into a car with known AQ operatives in an area where he knew or should have known that both the Yemeni and US governments were taking aggressive, lethal action against militants.  There's no logical reason to believe that the U.S. government intentionally targeted him.
                            And no, I didn't intend to patronize you. I ask that question in all seriousness. My parents warned me growing up about not getting mixed up with the wrong crowd as it can get you into trouble, even kill you. I.E. Don't get in the car with the driver who's been drinking, stay away from those who do drugs, etc. The same logic ought to apply to the late Al-Awlaki family.

            •  P. R. Disaster? (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              gerrilea

              Not if everybody just says, "Meh...."

              "We refuse to fight in a war started by men who refused to fight in a war." -freewayblogger

              by Bisbonian on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 02:49:16 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Or if people (0+ / 0-)

                pay attention to the facts and draw logical inferences from them instead of distorting ......

                •  Paying attention to what facts????? (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Bisbonian, aliasalias

                  The ones we aren't allowed to see?

                  This is sickening.

                  Good day.

                  -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

                  by gerrilea on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 03:11:18 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  the ones you appear to be ignorant of (0+ / 0-)

                    Such as who the late Mr. Al-Alwaki Jr. was with when he met his untimely, but not all that upsetting demise.

                    •  Meaningless drivel, sorry I didn't recall it all (0+ / 0-)

                      clearly.

                      It doesn't change the fact that this Administration has "white papers" that outline the targeted killing of American Citizens on American Soil.

                      The "slippery slope" we've gone down wasn't a surprise to many of us.

                      So, in your "high estimation", since I'm ignorant, my concerns for these very dangerous developments can be brushed aside???

                      The path that lead us to this moment, details aside, invalidates these fears???

                      You claiming he shouldn't have been there, is insulting and offensive. I don't have relativistic morality.  I do believe in the rule of law and that our government must obey the rules we gave it, without exception.

                      When it fails to do so, it become illegitimate and the perpetrators become traitors.

                      You present an argument that "justifies" treason, shameful.

                      -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

                      by gerrilea on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 03:41:01 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  It's hardly meaningless "Drivel" (0+ / 0-)

                        since you used your incorrect "facts" to try and refute my position that the son was collateral damage and the intended target was not him, but those he was with.

                        You claiming he shouldn't have been there, is insulting and offensive.
                        Why is this insulting? You think he SHOULD have been in a car with know enemies of the US? Didn't your mom ever warn you about hanging out with the wrong crowd? This is the ultimate case of that.
                        •  Hon, this isn't about my Mom or how I was raised. (2+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          Bisbonian, aliasalias

                          Your position is morally bankrupt as is your defense of unconstitutional actions taken by this administration to target and kill Americans without due process.

                          Any of us can be the next target, period.

                          "When governments fear the people, there is liberty. When the people fear the government, there is tyranny.

                          ~Thomas Jefferson.

                          I will not support your tyrannical justifications, no matter how you attempt to present them to me.

                          I'm not that naive.

                          -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

                          by gerrilea on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 03:54:13 PM PST

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  I'm not your "Hon" (0+ / 0-)

                            for starters.

                            Any of us can be the next target, period.
                            If we go foreign countries and recruit terrorists, I imagine we could be. Otherwise, I probably have more chance of being hit by an asteroid.
                          •  Great plan here to divert attention from the (0+ / 0-)

                            facts of the diary.

                            I didn't miss the misdirection, really.  Don't like my condescending attitude, then stop patronizing me.

                            This has nothing to do with being hit by an asteroid or going into foreign lands to recruit freedom fighters.

                            It has everything to do with the white papers that reveal there is a plan to target and kill Americans on American Soil using drones.

                            Treasonous acts being put forth by our government and what the hell are we going to do about it?

                            Ask nicely? "Please don't kill me with the drones, MR. PRESIDENT!"

                            The authors of said "opinions" should be arrested, Gitmo'd and then let's see what they know!  Who ordered them to create these opinions, when and why.

                            -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

                            by gerrilea on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 04:46:22 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I hope the irony of your own posts (0+ / 0-)

                            isn't lost on you:

                            he authors of said "opinions" should be arrested, Gitmo'd and then let's see what they know!  Who ordered them to create these opinions, when and wh
                            So an American who did nothing more than author a position paper should be arrested for something that is not illegal, taken out of the country and tortured but hanging out with AQ terrorists is AOK? I sure hope this is snark, otherwise you are very, very sick individual.
                          •  Ad hominems are not acceptable discourse here. (0+ / 0-)

                            It was mostly snark, going along with your stated position that the targeted killing of Americans for exercising their right to a free press and political speech should be enough to kill them, extrajudicially.

                            Since there is no "rule of law" in your position, you can't now argue that my position is invalid, really.  "WE don't torture", right?

                            There is no difference here except who's doing the talking, Anwar al-Aulaqi or the administration's "legal" teams.

                            What they wrote, we don't know the specific details, but we do know they planned on killing American Citizens on American soil.  Sounds like Conspiracy to commit treason.  Isn't this the argument you made against al-Aulaqi???

                            Or is their speech protected because it's not an eminent threat?

                            The cognitive dissonance is revealing, isn't it?

                            Can't hold two opposing viewpoints and claim they are both valid.  

                            -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

                            by gerrilea on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 05:08:47 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  In fact, when old Benjamin Franklin went to (0+ / 0-)

                            France to get support, both militarily and financially, for our revolution, he would be considered a terrorist today, wouldn't he???

                            Clearly from the arguments you put forth here, there can be no doubt AND that is another problem revealed.

                            What line does an American cross that makes him a traitor or a terrorist?  One that advocates for the rule of law?

                            Or just ones that argue against our bloodlust Imperialism in foreign lands to install puppet dictators that go on to kill millions?

                            That is, after all what he did. Argue against our bloodlust.

                            Would I be considered a terrorist for arguing against our Imperialism? For arguing against the War Crimes committed? For defending the constitution?

                            If so, then report me to the CIA, they must have a few extra drones laying around to get me.

                            -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

                            by gerrilea on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 04:55:23 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Ok (0+ / 0-)

                            So Ben Franklin = Al Awlaki. Got it.

                          •  Is there any functional difference between the (0+ / 0-)

                            two?  Both were overseas attempting to foment support for the destruction of the power structure here, correct?

                            -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

                            by gerrilea on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 05:34:15 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

          •  Officially by leak (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Dr Swig Mcjigger

            the target Ibrahim al-Banna but just as likely they were after the whole crew....

            "Fascism is attracting the dregs of humanity- people with a slovenly biography - sadists, mental freaks, traitors." - ILYA EHRENBURG

            by durrati on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 02:38:48 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

      •  Well, according to Sen. Levin (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        gerrilea

        and Sen Graham, he is "associated" with someone who is "acting against American interests" so I suppose instead of being killed he should have been put into indefinite detention.

        if necessary for years; if necessary, alone

        by SouthernLiberalinMD on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 01:41:17 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  It looks like he was just in the wrong place at (0+ / 0-)

        wrong time.  I see no evidence that suggests that he was the intended target.  

    •  Bullshit. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      gerrilea, limpidglass, aliasalias

      http://travel.state.gov/...

      A person wishing to renounce his or her U.S. citizenship must voluntarily and with intent to relinquish U.S. citizenship:

      1. appear in person before a U.S. consular or diplomatic officer,
      2. in a foreign country (normally at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate); and
      3. sign an oath of renunciation
      Renunciations that do not meet the conditions described above have no legal effect. Because of the provisions of Section 349(a)(5), U.S. citizens cannot effectively renounce their citizenship by mail, through an agent, or while in the United States. In fact, U.S. courts have held certain attempts to renounce U.S. citizenship to be ineffective on a variety of grounds, as discussed below.

      Second, if
      He was conclusively linked with at least three violent acts
      and
      I am sure that the NSA and the President can provide evidence
      THEN LET THEM PROVIDE THE EVIDENCE! All we have now are vague assertions from the executive branch that he really was a bad guy, and that that justified the extrajudicial killing of an American citizen.

      "He who fights monsters should see to it that he himself does not become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you."

      by Hayate Yagami on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 10:41:44 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  What a crock... (0+ / 0-)

        Al-Awlaki incriminated himself.

        In January 2010, al-Aulaqi acknowledged that he met and spoke with Abdulmutallab (Fruit of the Loom bomber) in Yemen in the fall of 2009. In an interview, al-Aulaqi said: "Umar Farouk is one of my students; I had communications with him. And I support what he did." He also said: "I did not tell him to do this operation, but I support it," (in the words of Cosby ...RIIGGHHTT!)

        "I support what he did."

        He said the same thing about the Fort Hood shooter.

        He advocated violence against America by his own admission.

        "Fascism is attracting the dregs of humanity- people with a slovenly biography - sadists, mental freaks, traitors." - ILYA EHRENBURG

        by durrati on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 12:44:24 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  It's still protected speech. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          gerrilea, aliasalias

          Under the "imminent lawless action" standard set by Brandenburg v. Ohio and Hess v. Indiana.

          Advocating illegal action at some indefinite future time, which is what he was accused of (in the court of public opinion, anyway), explicitly fails the imminence test established in the latter case.

          "He who fights monsters should see to it that he himself does not become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you."

          by Hayate Yagami on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 01:28:48 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  That two of his (0+ / 0-)

            apostles killed or attempted to kill innocent Americans while he remained at large free to recruit others reads imminent  to me. If he were doing so in an environment where he could be apprehended that would be different.

            "Fascism is attracting the dregs of humanity- people with a slovenly biography - sadists, mental freaks, traitors." - ILYA EHRENBURG

            by durrati on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 02:29:40 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Is that You, Rumsfeld??? (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              aliasalias

              Sounds like you're the attorney against Padilla.

              "Free to recruit others"
              IS NOT eminent.

              http://www.revcom.us/...

              Scott Horton, an adjunct professor of law at Columbia University, wrote in a Harper’s magazine blog: “As the Bush Administration is conceptualizing and implementing this law, the fact that Padilla thought bad thoughts about the United States and its Government is enough to lock him up for life.”
              So, we've gone from indefinitely detaining someone whom doesn't agree with our government to killing them extra-judicially.

              This isn't a game and every American should be concerned when this kind of horse pooey is allowed to be passed off as legitimate constitutional law.

              We've seen this type of discourse before in history:

              Naomi Wolf, "End of America"

              -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

              by gerrilea on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 02:55:35 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Padilla ain't the greatest example here (0+ / 0-)

                he did more than just think bad thoughts or say bad things, he was found guilty of conspiring with terrorists and sentenced to more than 17 years in prison.
                Is there ANY act of terrorism against the US that you won't defend/

              •  Holy shite (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                durrati

                The US communist party is credible source here? I guess there's no need to answer the question I asked in my prior post.

                •  What? So, providing a link from a recognized (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Hayate Yagami

                  legitimate political organization IS a problem here?

                  Have we been transported back to the days of McCarthyism?

                  -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

                  by gerrilea on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 03:57:58 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Posting sources of dubious credibility (0+ / 0-)

                    without question ought to be. The Communist part is legitimate according to whom? Out of the tens of thousands of elected officials in this country at all levels, they hold exactly zero offices. They have come close to winning exactly zero offices in recent years. What makes them so legitimate? In any event, the Libertarian Party is much more credible and "legitimate" in that it actually wins offices here and there, at various levels but I doubt many here would take a link to it's site very seriously. If your the best support for your argument is the American Communist Party, you might wish to rethink your position.

                    •  Wow, so the only way to become legitimate (0+ / 0-)

                      in your eyes, is to hold public office?  I'm really having a problem with that "standard".

                      How do you know a politician lies? They open their mouths and talk.

                      That would be my opinion of "public officials", okay?

                      You have to do a little better than that for me.

                      What they presented is still valid, no matter how hard you try to discredit the messenger it doesn't invalidate the message.

                      And BTW, many here openly admit to wanting communism in this nation.  I personally do not, but that still doesn't change what was presented or make it less valid.

                      Deal with it. Or better yet, provide links or evidence countering what was presented. That will work for me.

                      -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

                      by gerrilea on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 07:50:31 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

              •  I am not privvy (0+ / 0-)

                to the evidence a jury used to convict Padillia, but, in Awlaki's case, his own words and actions convict himself.

                "Fascism is attracting the dregs of humanity- people with a slovenly biography - sadists, mental freaks, traitors." - ILYA EHRENBURG

                by durrati on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 03:29:31 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  They did? HOW? Did a jury of his peers (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Hayate Yagami

                  decide this? Did a judge?

                  NOPE.

                  Not a valid argument, sorry.

                  -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

                  by gerrilea on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 03:55:45 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  You, who (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Dr Swig Mcjigger

                    have made several invalid arguments, indeed has been unaware of facts about subjects he is arguing, have no grounds to assert this.

                    Sell it to the peanut gallery.

                    "Fascism is attracting the dregs of humanity- people with a slovenly biography - sadists, mental freaks, traitors." - ILYA EHRENBURG

                    by durrati on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 04:03:16 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  ROFL, love it...really...sooo sweet of you. (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      aliasalias

                      I may have forgotten the details of Anwar al-Aulaqi's son's indiscriminate murder but I didn't forget the point here.

                      One that you're trying to obfuscate.

                      The targeted killing of American Citizens without due process.

                      Let's not forget that his parents petitioned the courts with the help of the ACLU and the courts refused because there was no standing, he hadn't been charged with anything.

                      Funny how that works, right????

                      Now we're being informed that there are plans and white papers to target and kill Americans on American soil.

                      I didn't get that part wrong either.

                      But we mustn't talk about these things, I know, I know, I know, I did try to make a point that was wrong, I said I was wrong, so sue me.

                      This whole "war on terror" is a scam, its clearly a war on the American people.  The Padilla case makes clear any of us can be held without trial, forever.

                      These developments makes clear that we now won't be held, we'll just be targeted and killed.  Then the months after our deaths, the press will mysteriously "release" secret memo's showing how guilty we were for questioning the authority of our corporate overlords.

                      Sweet tyranny, thanks but no thanks.

                      -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

                      by gerrilea on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 04:39:09 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  Not what the court ruled (0+ / 0-)

                        Standing means that Al-Awlaki's father couldn't maintain a legal action on his son's behalf, since Al-Alwaki was an adult. It's basic principle of law that the person bringing the action has to have a legal interest in the outcome. Al-Awlaki was free to return to the US, get a lawyer or file a pro se appearance if he wanted to do. It is obvious he did not want to do this. The court did not base its ruling upon the fact that Al Awlaki was not charged with anything. It was lack of standing and the political question doctrine, which made this unreviewable. (Hint: Brandenberg won't help you here)

                        •  Rofl, the US Constitution does... (1+ / 0-)
                          Recommended by:
                          pot

                          http://www.salon.com/...

                          As a reminder:  Obama supporters who are dutifully insisting that the President not only has the right to order American citizens killed without due process, but to do so in total secrecy, on the ground that Awlaki is a Terrorist and Traitor, are embracing those accusations without having the slightest idea whether they’re actually true.  All they know is that Obama has issued these accusations, which is good enough for them.  That’s the authoritarian mind, by definition:  if the Leader accuses a fellow citizen of something, then it’s true — no trial or any due process at all is needed and there is no need even for judicial review before the decreed sentence is meted out, even when the sentence is death.

                          For those reciting the “Awlaki-is-a-traitor” mantra, there’s also the apparently irrelevant matter that Article III, Section 3 of the Constitution (the document which these same Obama supporters pretended to care about during the Bush years) provides that “No person shall be convicted of treason unless on the testimony of two witnesses to the same overt act, or on confession in open court.”  Treason is a crime that the Constitution specifically requires be proven with due process in court, not by unilateral presidential decree.  And that’s to say nothing of the fact that the same document — the Constitution — expressly forbids the deprivation of life “without due process of law.”  This one sentence from the Post article nicely summarizes the state of Obama’s civil liberties record:

                          Argue this one baby!

                          Point, set, match.

                          The highest law of the land IS the Constitution, Brandenberg was based on said piece of paper.

                          See how nicely it works out for all of us when our created government does what it's supposed to do?

                          -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

                          by gerrilea on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 06:17:35 PM PST

                          [ Parent ]

                          •  you and Greenwald are both idiots (0+ / 0-)

                            there is no doubt of the guilt of Al-Awlaki, here, on video, he calls for American Muslims to rise up and follow the example of Nidal Hasan the Ft. Hood murderer. Thousands have witnessed his treason and confession on the open internet.

                            The President had every right and duty to wipe this worthless piece of shit from the face of the Earth.

                            Checkmate.

                            "Fascism is attracting the dregs of humanity- people with a slovenly biography - sadists, mental freaks, traitors." - ILYA EHRENBURG

                            by durrati on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 07:22:44 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Nice try, nope doesn't cut it... (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            pot

                            show me the "eminent threat" the US Supreme Court has established as the standard.

                            Then show me where the US Constitution granted the POTUS the power to kill any American Citizen not charged, tried or convicted????

                            It didn't.

                            -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

                            by gerrilea on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 07:28:01 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Incitement to violence (0+ / 0-)

                            by a skilled sociopath represents an imminent threat as the actions of the Underwear Bomber proved. Al-Awlaki convicted himself, this video statement bears witness to that. To argue that the President had no recourse but to depend on a foreign government to apprehend is to argue that the President has no right to defend American citizens conducting their daily lives.

                            Tell that to these folks...

                             http://www.examiner.com/...

                            "Fascism is attracting the dregs of humanity- people with a slovenly biography - sadists, mental freaks, traitors." - ILYA EHRENBURG

                            by durrati on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 08:24:58 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Wow, you've devolved this discussion into an (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            pot

                            emotional ploy and trotting out pictures of dead citizens that he did not kill.  

                            If there was evidence of his crimes then the President is constitutionally obligated to follow the law enumerated for him, not anything more or less.

                            I will not ascribe to your empty emotional argument or manipulation into falsely believing the POTUS is some savior! "The protector of the American way"...bullcrap! He is not, nor will the next one be, they are public servants.  This issue we're discussing will effect generations of Americans to come.

                            I don't want to tell my Grandchildren that I did nothing to stop this nation from falling into a tyrannical dictatorship.

                            You may wish to naively believe these public servants can do more than the limited powers we granted them...I DO NOT.

                            And as long as that piece of paper is still the supreme law of this land, there is no debate here.

                            Sadly, you've proven that you have no legitimate argument, I wish you did because I would have loved to debate it, not this crap passed off as such.

                            -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

                            by gerrilea on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 09:03:18 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Commander -In-Chief of the Armed Forces (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Dr Swig Mcjigger

                            is in itself a rather broad and nebulous authority that Washington used to stem the Whiskey Rebellion, Jefferson used to attack Tripoli, Polk used to conquer half a continent, Lincoln used to rescind Habeas corpus and free the slaves, FDR used to arm England, Truman used to avert a steel strike, Ike and JFK used to end segregation, all without a specific Constitutional mandate. I think the Republic can survive this President wielding the title to rid the planet of a shitheel little terrorist who celebrated mass murder and called for more.

                            But maybe you are right and a Boeing 777 or two full of people should have been sacrificed to your tender sensibilities....

                            but I think not.

                            "Fascism is attracting the dregs of humanity- people with a slovenly biography - sadists, mental freaks, traitors." - ILYA EHRENBURG

                            by durrati on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 09:20:42 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Again, emotional arguments have no sway with (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            pot

                            me.  Didn't you get that part?

                            The constitutional mandate you claim now is that since presidents have violated the constitution before, it's acceptable for them to continue doing it, even today, while I'm alive, NOPE doesn't work.

                            All the examples you present were done before I was born, I had no say or control over those things.

                            And no, the Republic will not survive as a Republic if you find it acceptable to target and kill those Americans and their free speech you don't agree with.

                            Maybe you need to review this for a brief moment to understand where I currently am, in this debate:

                            "Tender my sensibilities" Is this some kind of perverse threat?  Seriously, are you saying that if I don't buy into your propaganda and fear porn, it will happen again?  Or since I won't buy into your belief system of tyrannical unitary executive powers, it's my fault somehow?

                            It would stop if we stopped invading other countries.

                            THIS VIDEO reveals a helluva a lot more than your propaganda here will ever address:

                            Have a great day.

                            Remember the last lines of the second video, please:

                            No justice, No peace!

                             

                            -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

                            by gerrilea on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 09:45:37 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Free speech does not include (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            Dr Swig Mcjigger

                            the right to foment violence against American citizens who may or may not share your views or mine.

                            I have concerns about indefinite detention, but recognize it has been used before in time of war and did not result in Constitutional crisis, but, as you contend, the nature of this war and doubts about its being resolved in a timely fashion bring up additional problems. As for now I am content to let the courts settle matters, I may change my mind later, but regardless I won't be fashioning bombs as rebuttal.

                            I think you are at the wrong site. Dailykos is for those of us that want to affect democracy through the power of the vote. Allowing use of the site by those who would defend the tactic of attempting to affect policy by murder I contend just might weaken the chances of success of this primary mission. But that is just the political me talking.

                            Such matters are for kos to decide.

                            Good Day.

                            "Fascism is attracting the dregs of humanity- people with a slovenly biography - sadists, mental freaks, traitors." - ILYA EHRENBURG

                            by durrati on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 06:18:12 AM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Wow, you now question my motives? (1+ / 0-)
                            Recommended by:
                            pot

                            Why are you making this about me and not the argument I've presented?

                            I've tried to be respectful of your contrary arguments here.  We are here to elect more and better Democrats, and not necessarily in that order.  

                            I want better Democrats, okay?  There are many here that keep holding our elected officials accountable, such as Jesselyn does here.  

                            As Joe Shikspack does here:

                            http://www.dailykos.com/...

                            OPOL does.

                            JPMassar is one of my favorites.

                            We all have one real goal, better Democrats.

                            AS for your claim about "free speech" it is incorrect and the courts have decided, the Supreme Court's legal framework of "eminent threat" MUST BE MET.

                            Only when it crosses that line can your claims be accurate.  And then the POTUS is obligated to follow the due process clauses included in the Bill of Rights.  You can't have it both ways here.

                            Then you'd have to establish what "war" are we in?  What "declared" war, as per the US Constitution? A "war" against a tactic used by the people we oppress?

                            "War on Terror", is that your current position???

                            -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

                            by gerrilea on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 07:57:11 AM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  I don't question your motives, brother (0+ / 0-)

                            I question your usefulness. Candidates that would espouse your view that Awalki didn't merit a Hellfire up the bung after calling on all American Muslims on video to emulate his e-mail fave rave the Ft. Hood shooter couldn't get elected sewer inspector in 95% of the districts in the U.S.

                            Ya wanna help support Republicans.

                            "Fascism is attracting the dregs of humanity- people with a slovenly biography - sadists, mental freaks, traitors." - ILYA EHRENBURG

                            by durrati on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 04:59:22 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  If you wish for us to abandon our values then (0+ / 0-)

                            we aren't Democrats.

                            That is the point here.

                            Abandoning the Constitution for "temporary safety" IS exactly what the Republicans did and it seems us "Democrats" aren't any better, for now.

                            My usefulness it to get us back to 9-10-01!

                            Okay?

                            -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

                            by gerrilea on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 06:38:31 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Killing Alwaki (0+ / 0-)

                            was not an abandonment of our values. It was defending our fellow countrymen. We shot Yamamoto out of the sky, Roosevelt amped the Operation Pastorius spies, bin Laden got his.

                            We have been in the wrong plenty. Most especially on our own turf. But if you got a problem with Exxon in Saudi Arabia take it up with Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz asswipe don't sneak over here and murder Americans.

                            "Fascism is attracting the dregs of humanity- people with a slovenly biography - sadists, mental freaks, traitors." - ILYA EHRENBURG

                            by durrati on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 07:16:30 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Seriously? A comparison to WWII? (0+ / 0-)

                            Yamamoto was not an American Citizen, was he?

                            Alwaqi was not this:

                            Isoroku Yamamoto was a Japanese Marshal Admiral and the commander-in-chief of the Combined Fleet during World War II
                            He was an American that detested our actions in the Middle East.  He was an American that had all the rights, privileges and protections listed in the United States Constitution.  He exercised those rights and was killed for it, without indictment, judge or jury.  He was, on the word of the POTUS, executed without due process.

                            A difference that you cannot ignore, deny or obfuscate through emotional manipulation.  Meaning the POTUS CAN do it to any of us, whenever he feels like it!

                            Had he been anything other than AN AMERICAN CITIZEN, you would get no arguments from me. Unless of course, he was abducted, tortured at some black site and then indefinitely detained for decades without charges or a trial.  That act puts our military men in danger, you do understand this, right?

                            The enemy can then do it to our men, contrary to the Geneva Conventions and the rules of war.  If we don't follow them, then we cannot expect anyone else to.

                            -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

                            by gerrilea on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 07:46:56 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  you are hopeless (0+ / 0-)

                            I'm done here.

                            "Fascism is attracting the dregs of humanity- people with a slovenly biography - sadists, mental freaks, traitors." - ILYA EHRENBURG

                            by durrati on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 08:14:10 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Sweet, when confronted with my valid argument (0+ / 0-)

                            you attack me personally and refuse to address these issues.

                            Why did you come into Jesselyn's diary again?

                            -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

                            by gerrilea on Thu Feb 07, 2013 at 07:06:06 AM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  O.K. (0+ / 0-)

                            as you think somehow that you've won the argument I'll come back in in an attempt to show you how wrong you are, not that I think I'll have much luck...

                            First you ask why I came into Ms. Radack's diary, I was inclined to comment because she was wrong, of course, but most egregiously she was wrong in making this comment.

                            "No one has ever asserted that al-Awlaki was himself a member of Al Quadda, much less an operative, only that he supported the organization through his propaganda."  
                            Well that is just bullshit because the President of the United States did so, here and in addition he stated al asshole "directed the failed attempt to blow up an airplane on Christmas Day in 2009. He directed the failed attempt to blow up U.S. cargo planes in 2010," Mr. Obama said. "And he repeatedly called on individuals in the United States and around the globe to kill innocent men, women and children to advance a murderous agenda."

                            Now I don't know why Ms. Radack, a person of some education and past prominance, chooses to fuck around on Daily Kos misleading her dumbass followers and flaunting her non-use of spell check but because of her standing I chose not to confront her directly but rather to meekly point out that al asshole was a traitor, whose role in trying to kill Americans had been explained circumspectly by the modest and thoughtful Presidebt that waxed him.

                            Knowing not the depths of her readers' ignorance, I did not annotate and footnote my comment because, frankly, I didn't think it necessary... surely some on you must read other than Ms. Radack's productions, but woe, I was wrong (at least on this count) and was told such fantastical things that al asshole was merely an innocent blogger commenting on injustice and the lack of cotton candy rainbows in the environs of Sana'a and heartrending stories of his embrace of his son as they watched the approach of the Hellfire missile that would kill them both two weeks and 120 kilometers apart.

                            I will not respond any further because you are a rather dull person who cannot grasp the simple truth that while the President has no desire to kill you (at least not as of now) al asshole would have gladly directed one of his poor equally misinformed followers to torch you and your entire family without a second thought.

                            In 1955, the Israeli philosopher Yishavayahu Leibowitz complained in a letter to David Ben-Gurion, Israel's first prime minister, about innocent Palestinians killed in Israeli operations.

                            "I received your letter and I do not agree with you," Ben-Gurion replied. "Were all the human ideals to be given to me on the one hand and Israeli security on the other, I would choose Israeli security because while it is good that there be a world full of peace, fraternity, justice and honesty, it is even more important that we be in it."

                            I would prefer to live in a world where al asshole could have been captured and brought to trial in America to get the juice or the noose he so richly deserved. But failing that  I prefer to be in this world, and I prefer you to be here too, misinformed and misguided as you are.

                            "Fascism is attracting the dregs of humanity- people with a slovenly biography - sadists, mental freaks, traitors." - ILYA EHRENBURG

                            by durrati on Thu Feb 07, 2013 at 07:25:27 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Wow, got some issues here don't you? (0+ / 0-)

                            This isn't about me.  Jesselyn has shined a light into the dark corners of this nation for many people here.

                            The POTUS' word is meaningless.

                            You've gone to great lengths not to answer my questions and continued your personal attacks on me.

                            Let me try to put this in a way you may understand.

                            If we lose who we are as a nation in the process of "staying alive", then our lives and our nation weren't what I thought.  A nation of laws. Selling our national soul to the devil to "keep us safe" IS exactly what the fucking Germans did.

                            Naomi Wolf, "End of America",WATCH IT AND LEARN HISTORY!

                            OUR constitution has enumerated what constitutes "treason", you don't get to decide that, neither do I OR even the POTUS.  Our courts must decide this. WHY IS that stipulation written out? TO PREVENT TYRANNY IN ALL IT'S MANIFESTATIONS. Be it a Military Dictatorship OR our newly labeled, UNITARY EXECUTIVE.  NO PRESIDENT HAS EVER ASSUMED SUCH POWERS UNTIL NOW.

                            HIS word isn't good enough and his actions are High Crimes and Misdemeanors!

                            When we stop killing them, maybe then they'll stop hating us. You fear al-Aulaqi's readers organizing and coming after us because of our CRIMES AGAINST HUMANITY.  Then maybe we should stop committing them.

                            Your relativistic morality revealed.  It's okay for us to kill millions, mostly innocent unarmed civilians to steal their natural resources as long as no one speaks of it, right?

                            Al Awlaqi spoke the truth our government didn't want revealed.  He was like any other true patriot in this nation.  HE was like any other American!   He spoke truth to power AND was exterminated for it.

                            I could care less what manufactured "evidence" came out afterwards.  If our government had evidence they could have brought it to a grand jury.  That simple lawful act was all that was needed here.

                            Proving to millions of us that we no longer have a Constitution or the rule of law here any more.

                            That "selling of our soul" was completed with the passage of then NDAA.

                            -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

                            by gerrilea on Thu Feb 07, 2013 at 11:44:35 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  errr, no (0+ / 0-)

                            Again, read the case. You keep making the false assertion  that the court ruled that   it couldn't hear the case due to Al-Awlaki never having been charge. The drivel from an idiot like Greenwald that you posted in no way rebuts this.  
                            Bradenberg protects speech, and even then, not absolutely. There is evidence that Al-Alwaki did much more than say "The US is eeeeevillll." He actually recruited and helped provide training on a specific mission to kill scores of Americans. That's not protected speech under the most tortured reading of Brandenberg. If it were, conspiracy charges could almost never be successfully brought and in fact, the government successfully convicts people on conspiracy charges all the time.

                            Educated yourself on these matters.

                •  How did he "convict himself" (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  aliasalias, gerrilea

                  when there was never a trial?

                  How did he "convict himself" when a judge or jury was never involved?

                  How did he "convict himself" when the judicial system was blocked from even examining the facts in the case?

                  How do you define "convict"?

                  "He who fights monsters should see to it that he himself does not become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you."

                  by Hayate Yagami on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 04:06:53 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

            •  Indeed. His "crime" was speech. (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              aliasalias

              Speech, which, under the SCOTUS decisions in Brandenburg and Hess, was Constitutionally protected. Propaganda is not a crime. Even advocating for people to conduct a criminal activity at some unspecified future time is protected speech, which was decided, explicitly, in Hess.

              You are, in effect, advocating for a "government says so" exception to the law. i.e., that, because the government says he's a terrorist, the regular Constitutional protections go out the window.

              That's a dangerous precedent to set, especially when the result is the president acting as judge, jury and executioner, with no judicial oversight.

              "He who fights monsters should see to it that he himself does not become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you."

              by Hayate Yagami on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 04:04:18 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

        •  PS (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          gerrilea, aliasalias

          Even if I were to accept your "argument" at face value, I don't recall seeing an amendment to the Constitution that said that you can skip the trial and go straight to the execution if someone, supposedly, "incriminates himself".

          "He who fights monsters should see to it that he himself does not become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you."

          by Hayate Yagami on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 01:32:45 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  And he still wasn't ever charged with anything. (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Hayate Yagami, aliasalias

          HE was just killed.

          No jury, no judge, no nothing.

          How do you "petition for redress" WHEN YOUR DEAD?!

          -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

          by gerrilea on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 03:21:35 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Maybe the thing to do (0+ / 0-)

            is to petition for redress instead of hanging out with Al Qeda? Just a thought. The court seems to like that one.

            •  Hum, didn't his parent along with the ACLU try (0+ / 0-)

              to petition the courts and they refused to hear the case because he hadn't been charged with anything?

              Did you miss that point?

              Can't fight against charges that were never brought.

              -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

              by gerrilea on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 05:52:56 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Hum, no (0+ / 0-)

                I am referring to Al-Awlaki himself, not his Dad. In general, parents don't have standing to sue in stead of their adult children.  Read Judge Bates's well reasoned opinion. He did NOT rule that he couldn't hear the case because Al-Awlaki wasn't charged with anything. He ruled that (1) his father had no standing to sue on his son's behalf and (2) that the political question doctrine meant that this wasn't a matter for the courts.

      •  Thank you for that (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        gerrilea, Hayate Yagami

        It's so great to see people stick to the facts (and the law).

        I can stand on my rooftop and yell that I don't agree with fracking and Keystone XL and therefore I'm renouncing my citizenship all I want and it won't mean I don't have to pay taxes April 15.

        if necessary for years; if necessary, alone

        by SouthernLiberalinMD on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 01:42:35 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Hardly the same thing (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Dr Swig Mcjigger

          bad analogy.

          "Fascism is attracting the dregs of humanity- people with a slovenly biography - sadists, mental freaks, traitors." - ILYA EHRENBURG

          by durrati on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 03:47:19 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  No, it's exactly the same. (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            aliasalias, SouthernLiberalinMD

            You said

            Al-Awlaki gave up U.S. citizenship when he announced he was at war with us
            The law does not work that way. There are very specific ways that one can either renounce or lose US citizenship. Al-Awlaki neither formally renounced his citizenship, nor did he meet any of the criteria for which citizenship could be revoked.

            Even the State Department admits this.

            [State Department spokeswoman Victoria] Nuland said she asked State Department lawyers whether the government can revoke a person's citizenship based on their affiliation with a foreign terrorist group, and it turned out there's no law on the books authorizing officials to do so. "An American can be stripped of citizenship for committing an act of high treason and being convicted in a court for that. But that was obviously not the case in this case," she said. "Under U.S. law, there are seven criteria under which you can strip somebody of citizenship, and none of those applied in this case."
            From a legal standpoint, his citizenship status was no different than that in SouthernLiberalinMD's example.

            "He who fights monsters should see to it that he himself does not become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you."

            by Hayate Yagami on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 04:16:15 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  except one committed treason (0+ / 0-)

              and the other a traffic violation...sheesh you people will argue the most spurious shit.

              "Fascism is attracting the dregs of humanity- people with a slovenly biography - sadists, mental freaks, traitors." - ILYA EHRENBURG

              by durrati on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 06:40:53 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  He was never officially accused of that. (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                SouthernLiberalinMD

                Or of anything, really. His entire case was the executive saying "Based on secret evidence with no judicial review, he's a bad guy and should die."

                "He who fights monsters should see to it that he himself does not become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you."

                by Hayate Yagami on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 06:28:27 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

    •  You really need to read the law please. (3+ / 0-)

      http://www.theatlantic.com/...

      In 1969, the Supreme Court's decision in Brandenburg v. Ohio effectively overturned Schenck and any authority the case still carried. There, the Court held that inflammatory speech--and even speech advocating violence by members of the Ku Klux Klan--is protected under the First Amendment, unless the speech "is directed to inciting or producing imminent lawless action and is likely to incite or produce such action"
      You're telling us because you didn't agree with his speech, he should be killed.  

      You're telling us that he was no longer a US Citizen because he published his beliefs, he should be killed.

      When did we grant Congress our or government such powers?  Clearly we did not, as the SUPREME COURT HAS RULED.

      Making any "U.S. code" unconstitutional and invalid.

      -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

      by gerrilea on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 10:46:35 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  you need to read some too (0+ / 0-)

        http://www.law.cornell.edu/...

        esp. section (a) 7 including the links. Advocacy of warring against the U.S. esp. when coupled with actions that comply, meet the bar set under the U.S. Code.

        "Fascism is attracting the dregs of humanity- people with a slovenly biography - sadists, mental freaks, traitors." - ILYA EHRENBURG

        by durrati on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 12:28:35 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Congress or gov't, hell, it looks like durrati (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        gerrilea, Hayate Yagami

        is saying al-Awlaki had the power to remove his own citizenship just by saying so.

        if necessary for years; if necessary, alone

        by SouthernLiberalinMD on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 01:43:37 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  18 USC § 2385... (0+ / 0-)
          Whoever, with intent to cause the overthrow or destruction of any such government, prints, publishes, edits, issues, circulates, sells, distributes, or publicly displays any written or printed matter advocating, advising, or teaching the duty, necessity, desirability, or propriety of overthrowing or destroying any government in the United States by force or violence, or attempts to do so;
          clearly states this as one of several grounds for loss of native-born citizenship. He would have gone unnoticed if not for the Ft. Hood shooter and the Underwear bomber. If he had been in the U.S. and made the same statements of support he undoubtedly would have been arrested. Instead  he was targeted.

          "Fascism is attracting the dregs of humanity- people with a slovenly biography - sadists, mental freaks, traitors." - ILYA EHRENBURG

          by durrati on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 03:55:53 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  The State Department disagrees with you. (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            aliasalias, gerrilea

            State Department

            [State Department spokeswoman Victoria] Nuland said she asked State Department lawyers whether the government can revoke a person's citizenship based on their affiliation with a foreign terrorist group, and it turned out there's no law on the books authorizing officials to do so. "An American can be stripped of citizenship for committing an act of high treason and being convicted in a court for that. But that was obviously not the case in this case," she said. "Under U.S. law, there are seven criteria under which you can strip somebody of citizenship, and none of those applied in this case."

            "He who fights monsters should see to it that he himself does not become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you."

            by Hayate Yagami on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 04:27:36 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  The disclaimer (0+ / 0-)

              was in reference to "not being convicted in a court of law" his actions clearly constitute treason... though he remained outside the reach of the law.

              She also said:

              MS. NULAND: You know, it’s interesting; I looked into this with our lawyers before coming down here. You might be interested to know that there is no law currently on the U.S. books that allows for the revocation of U.S. citizenship based on one’s affiliation with a foreign terrorist group. Now, an American can be stripped of citizenship for committing an act of high treason and being convicted in a court for that. But that was obviously not the case in this case.
              Which seems to indicate that might be the case.

              Maybe she should have asked someone in Justice.

              Now for a riddle: If two or more viewers on a website witness someone calling for them to make war on the United States does it constitute (heh) treason?

              I have my answer.

              "Fascism is attracting the dregs of humanity- people with a slovenly biography - sadists, mental freaks, traitors." - ILYA EHRENBURG

              by durrati on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 05:02:13 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Are you even reading what you write? (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                gerrilea, SouthernLiberalinMD

                And I don't mean that as a rhetorical question.
                You quote this:

                Now, an American can be stripped of citizenship for committing an act of high treason and being convicted in a court for that. But that was obviously not the case in this case.[Emphasis added]
                And then IMMEDIATELY say
                Which seems to indicate that might be the case.

                "He who fights monsters should see to it that he himself does not become a monster. And if you gaze for long into an abyss, the abyss gazes also into you."

                by Hayate Yagami on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 05:11:14 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  It is obvious he didn't have his day in court (0+ / 0-)

                  what I am disputing is what would have happened if he did. I say his treason was online for all to see and his death was extra-juridical but only because he was out of reach of a court. Should his treason, or threat to innocent lives, be put aside because of that?

                  "Fascism is attracting the dregs of humanity- people with a slovenly biography - sadists, mental freaks, traitors." - ILYA EHRENBURG

                  by durrati on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 05:34:59 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Wasn't that question answered already? (2+ / 0-)

                    The US constitution tells what must occur for a legitimate charge of "treason" to leveled against any American.

                    That never happened.  Even though I'd like to call Bush a traitor, it's not valid until two or more people swear in open court.

                    -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

                    by gerrilea on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 10:35:57 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                  •  treason was online for all to see? (0+ / 0-)

                    I can decide he is a traitor via my interpretation of his words (seen online) but my opinion of his online comments does not legally establish him as a traitor. I believe the Constitution has some particulars about how you legally establish someone is a traitor. The particulars written in the Constitution need to be followed in establishing whether or not someone is a traitor, otherwise the Constitution is not the supreme law of the land.

                    If we're going to use "what's online for all to see" as the legal method of establishing whether or not someone is a traitor, I can't wait for what will happen the first time a Republican is in the White House. Freepers and RedStaters sending in our words and saying "They're traitors! It was online for all to see!"

                    if necessary for years; if necessary, alone

                    by SouthernLiberalinMD on Wed Feb 06, 2013 at 01:14:44 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

    •  I don't think so--I think that just (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      gerrilea, Hayate Yagami, aliasalias

      makes him an American citizen who is a traitor.

      In which case, refer to the Constitution and its discussion of how you deal with people accused of treason.  Due process. Because, you know, we're a nation of laws.

      if necessary for years; if necessary, alone

      by SouthernLiberalinMD on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 01:40:25 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  This part is just false (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cryonaut
    o one has ever asserted that al-Awlaki was himself a member of Al Quadda, much less an operative, only that he supported the organization through his propaganda.
    This is pure b.s. The administration did in fact assert that Al-Awlaki crossed the line from being a mere propagandist to being an AQ operative. I don't know the truth of this, but it is not correct to say that no one has ever asserted this.
    •  Asserting that you're the Queen Of England (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Hayate Yagami, aliasalias

      doesn't make it valid, does it?

      Was any grand jury, judge or Congressional Committee allowed to see the "assertion" or test it's credibility?

      The BS I'm seeing is you want to claim all presented here is somehow false for a minor failure.

      I could care less if they "asserted" anything. UNTIL they prove that "assertion", it's meaningless.

      -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

      by gerrilea on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 09:55:43 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  That's not the point (0+ / 0-)

        The point is that it is not accurate to point out as the diarist does, that "no one ever asserted" that Al-Awlaki was a member of AQ and the he "only supported the organization" through his propaganda"  when in fact, the administration, as well as other governments have in fact asserted that he was a top operative in the region. I don't know if this is true, but there is evidence to suggest that it is.  The Undewear bomber has in fact claimed to authorities that Al-Awlaki personally recruited him for his missing and helped arrange training. For me, a US male citizen with no English roots to claim Queen Elizabeth II, would be ludicrous on its face and not worthy of even considering. There are reasons to believe that Al-Alwaki was not merely a harmless anti American propagandist.

        •  What made him a "top operative"? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          aliasalias

          His right to free press, one of those pesky details in that damn piece of paper...

          You've done a good job here diverting people from the topic, haven't you?

          -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

          by gerrilea on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 03:26:34 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  ? (0+ / 0-)

            I didn't say that he was. I pointed out that the diarist falsely claimed that no one had ever accused him of being more than a propagandist.  I also pointed out that there is credible evidence to support their case. It may  be that he wasn't, as I conceded above, although there is evidence that the government's position is in fact correct.  

            •  Again, what "credible evidence", if they had it (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              aliasalias

              why didn't they take it to a grand jury and INDICT him?

              Clearly they didn't have the "evidence" you wish to believe they had.

              DUE PROCESS OF LAW.

              That is the issue here.

              If they have nothing to hide, then why aren't they showing us, the American people what they do have?

              If they have nothing to hide, then release the damn "secret court rulings", "secret documents", "secret evidence" and "secret legal interpretations".

              Obviously they have something to hide and they're guilty until proven innocent.  Guilty of treason, IMO.

              -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

              by gerrilea on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 03:47:58 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  The evidence provided by (0+ / 0-)

                Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab. You can disbelieve him if you wish, but in doing so, you have to imagine a giant conspiracy between Mr. Abdulmtallab, his attorney, the US DOJ, The government of Great Britain, the then Government of Yemen and the New York Times. Possible, but unlikely. Simpler answer is that Capt. Underpants was telling the truth.

                •  ROFL, what a short attention span you think I (0+ / 0-)

                  have.

                  The Downing Street Memo's?  You'd have me believe verifiable liars, such as the British Government and their co-conspirators, the US government?

                  If our government had evidence of his crimes, all they had to do was go to present their evidence to a grand jury and obtain an indictment against him.

                  It's that simple.  

                  -7.62; -5.95 The scientists of today think deeply instead of clearly. One must be sane to think clearly, but one can think deeply and be quite insane.~Tesla

                  by gerrilea on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 05:57:45 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

      •  once you claim to be the member of the (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Dr Swig Mcjigger

        enemy we are fighting on the battlefield, you are fair game. I wouldn't try to confirm it nicely.

    •  Er...the same people who wanted justification (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      gerrilea, Hayate Yagami, aliasalias

      for the extra-judicial execution also are saying he was a member of Al-Quaeda?  Kind of like being judge, jury and executioner all in one isn't it?

      if necessary for years; if necessary, alone

      by SouthernLiberalinMD on Tue Feb 05, 2013 at 01:47:29 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

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