Presidential Assassinations of U.S. Citizens

From Salon:

The Washington Post‘s Dana Priest today reports that “U.S. military teams and intelligence agencies are deeply involved in secret joint operations with Yemeni troops who in the past six weeks have killed scores of people.”  That’s no surprise, of course, as Yemen is now another predominantly Muslim country (along with Somalia and Pakistan) in which our military is secretly involved to some unknown degree in combat operations without any declaration of war, without any public debate, and arguably (though not clearly) without any Congressional authorization.  The exact role played by the U.S. in the late-December missile attacks in Yemen, which killed numerous civilians, is still unknown.

But buried in Priest’s article is her revelation that American citizens are now being placed on a secret “hit list” of people whom the President has personally authorized to be killed:

After the Sept. 11 attacks, Bush gave the CIA, and later the military, authority to kill U.S. citizens abroad if strong evidence existed that an American was involved in organizing or carrying out terrorist actions against the United States or U.S. interests, military and intelligence officials said. . . .

The Obama administration has adopted the same stance. If a U.S. citizen joins al-Qaeda, “it doesn’t really change anything from the standpoint of whether we can target them,” a senior administration official said. “They are then part of the enemy.”

[Read more at Salon]

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  • 5by5

    As far as I know, nobody has specifically countermanded the Executive Order signed by Ronald Reagan. In fact I seem to recall Bushbot officials pointing to that exact provision as an excuse to somehow claim “we don't do that sort of thing.”

    And since both carrying out or even CONSPIRING to carry out assassinations on behalf of the American gov't is illegal, doesn't that mean we should be arresting Eric Prince like, RIGHT NOW? Not to mention all of the Blackwater goons, since we now know for a fact that they've conducted extra-judicial killings in Germany and elsewhere?

    And for that matter, what do we do with Pat Robertson, who advocated for assassination on the teevee? :-)

  • maz

    OK, and it classifies anyone on the right side of the political spectrum a terrorist and even those who barter can be considered terrorists. Does it say alqueda specifically or just any terrorist?

  • maz

    OK, and it classifies anyone on the right side of the political spectrum a terrorist and even those who barter can be considered terrorists. Does it say alqueda specifically or just any terrorist?

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