Certain aspects of this legal framework require additional explication. First, the condition that an operational leader present an "imminent" threat of violent attack against the United States does not require the United States to have clear evidence that a specific attack on U.S. persons will take place in the immediate future.
He came unprepared. Someone get him the novelization of Space Jam
No ethically-trained software engineer would ever consent to write a KillCivilian procedure. Basic professional ethics would instead require him to write a KillPerson procedure, to which "Civilian" could be given as a parameter.
It is possible, I suppose, to imagine an extraordinary circumstance in which it would be necessary and appropriate under the Constitution and applicable laws of the United States for the President to authorize the military to use lethal force within the territory of the United States,
Whenever the President considers that unlawful obstructions, combinations, or assemblages, or rebellion against the authority of the United States, make it impracticable to enforce the laws of the United States in any State by the ordinary course of judicial proceedings, he may call into Federal service such of the militia of any State, and use such of the armed forces, as he considers necessary to enforce those laws or to suppress the rebellion.
“What is the definition of someone who can be targeted?” I asked. “The definition is a male between the ages of 20 and 40,” Munter replied. “My feeling is one man’s combatant is another man’s—well, a chump who went to a meeting.”
Sen. Strom Thurmond of South Carolina gave what remains the longest speech in Senate history—24 hours and 18 minutes—against the Civil Rights Act of 1957. Mr. Thurmond, a Democrat at the time who later changed parties, prepared beforehand like an athlete, dehydrating himself so he wouldn't have to use the bathroom. To avoid the same problem, Sen. Estes Kefauver (D., Tenn.) once rigged up a bag so he wouldn't have to leave the Senate floor.
If the administration were dispatching helmet-clad shield-bearing parachutist hoplites to indiscriminately spear to death militants and innocents alike, I would still object to the program.
If Romney was President, Rand Paul would not filibuster over drone strikes.
He's still making some good points, but yeah, Godwin=Randloss.
What's the contest? Like even if I agree with you (and decathecting makes a good point that it's not clear)...Romney didn't win. And Paul is doing the filibuster. So we're praising his filibuster. This isn't a referendum about "is Rand Paul a good person over the sum total of his life?"
There is no immutable check against some future hypothetical bad act on the part of the president.
This is not true. Kent State, the raid on the Branch Dividians, or various other "problematic" groups or persons. American history is rife with this - start with Lincoln and work your way forward.
What Paul is interested in kneecapping the president and sapping his support so that the president loses the sequester battle and Paul can finally do away with Social Security and the like.
Justinian, what if the guy is driving toward the population center with the nuke in the back of his truck. As you said, "I don't think many would object to blowing it up." But then we're still talking about a drone strike on american soil, aren't we?
If this was coming from Ron Paul, I might agree. But his son is vehemently opposed to the Civil Rights Act and has connections with staff and campaign contributors who are noted white supremacists.
Wolf Blitzer: All right, I want to give you a chance to explain, because there’s a lot of confusion right now about precisely where you stand. I’ll ask you a simple question. If you had been a member of the Senate or the House back in 1964, would you have voted yea or nay for the Civil Rights Act?
Rand Paul: Yes. I would have voted yes.
Wolf Blitzer: So why is there all this confusion emerging right now? Give me your analysis, because you’ve had to issue a statement today. There have been interviews on NPR yesterday and MSNBC. Tell us what’s going on.
Rand Paul I thought I was supposed to get a honeymoon. When does my honeymoon start after my victory? ... For several hours on a major news network yesterday, they reported repeatedly that I was for repealing the Civil Rights Act. That is not only not true, never been my position, but is an out and out lie..... There was an overriding problem in the South that was so big that it did require federal intervention in the Sixties. The Southern states weren't correcting it, and there was a need for federal intervention...
That people can misuse power is not an argument that no one should be given power.
That's a pretty stupid thing to say, though, since it's unconstitutional. Congress can't set the rules for drones any more than they can set the rules for using tanks.
A few republicans tried to paint him as weak on terrorism, but it did not catch on with the American public and polls around the time of the election showed that most people, even a large number of republicans, respected the way he was handling the issue.
This is a red herring. Americans don't need to worry that the government is going to kill them with drones, whether they're sitting at a cafe or anywhere else, for precisely the reason Mr Holder articulates: inside America, the American government is capable of arresting people, jailing them, and bringing them to trial. The entire reason why drones exist is precisely that America is now carrying out police operations in areas of the world where it can't arrest people, both for legal reasons and more importantly for strategic ones. American forces do not control the territory in Afghanistan, much less Yemen or Pakistan's northwest territories. Even when we had 110,000 troops in Afghanistan, we did not have effective tactical control of most of the country's territory, most of the time. Indeed, nobody did. Drones are, in a sense, a weapon of weakness; they're an acknowledgement that we have given up trying to pacify the countries where terrorist organisations are based, to "drain the swamp" as counter-insurgency parlance has it. We kill suspected terrorists with drones because we lack the capability to arrest them.
And therein lies the first part of the hypocrisy. Republican senators who had embraced Cheneyism--enhanced interrogation, Guantanamo, rendition, military tribunals--last night evinced a touching, tender sympathy for civil liberties and due process. Conservative bloggers were quick to say there was no hypocrisy: Cheney-era policies were about enemy combatants, foreigners with fewer if any rights, as opposed to American citizens. But that doesn’t explain why the same conservatives had nothing to say for the rights of Bradley Manning, the Army soldier who transferred thousands of files to Wikileaks. Whether he’s a traitor or simply a well-intentioned whistle-blower gone awry, the point is that he was treated with questionable due process, and none of the Republicans who had hastily refashioned themselves as ACLU members had said a wit about it even though Manning is very much an American.
"while... levels of violence remain high in northwestern Pakistan... drone strikes are associated with decreases in the number and lethality of militant attacks..."
Drones have lowered the political risk and raised the political reward of using lethal force and done so at a lower cost to the US taxpayer. In my opinion, the use of armed drones globally represents a natural and expected 21st century asymmetrical evolution of military power in our dealing with non-state actors that distributed towards smaller footprints after we engaged with overwhelming conventional military force. I see the US use of drones as a completely understandable military capability evolution. Like any new adaptation of State power that changes the rules of any battlefield in our favor, there are new considerations for using this new State power that must be addressed to insure rules of the road for others who also develop the same State power capability.
Indeed the majority splintered on this very point. The key disagreement between the plurality and the concurring Justices in Reid was over the continued precedential value of the Court’s previous opinion in In re Ross, 140 U. S. 453 (1891) , which the Reid Court understood as holding that under some circumstances Americans abroad have no right to indictment and trial by jury. The petitioner in Ross was a sailor serving on an American merchant vessel in Japanese waters who was tried before an American consular tribunal for the murder of a fellow crewman. 140 U. S., at 459, 479. The Ross Court held that the petitioner, who was a British subject, had no rights under the Fifth and Sixth Amendment s. Id., at 464. The petitioner’s citizenship played no role in the disposition of the case, however. The Court assumed (consistent with the maritime custom of the time) that Ross had all the rights of a similarly situated American citizen. Id., at 479 (noting that Ross was “under the protection and subject to the laws of the United States equally with the seaman who was native born”). The Justices in Reid therefore properly understood Ross as standing for the proposition that, at least in some circumstances, the jury provisions of the Fifth and Sixth Amendment s have no application to American citizens tried by American authorities abroad. See 354 U. S., at 11–12 (plurality opinion) (describing Ross as holding that “constitutional protections applied ‘only to citizens and others within the United States … and not to residents or temporary sojourners abroad’ ”
I NOTICE that apart from the widespread complaint that the German pilotless planes ‘seem so unnatural’ (a bomb dropped by a live airman is quite natural, apparently), some journalists are denouncing them as barbarous, inhumane, and ‘an indiscriminate attack on civilians’.
After what we have been doing to the Germans over the past two years, this seems a bit thick, but it is the normal human response to every new weapon. Poison gas, the machine-gun, the submarine, gunpowder, and even the crossbow were similarly denounced in their day. Every weapon seems unfair until you have adopted it yourself. But I would not deny that the pilotless plane, flying bomb, or whatever its correct name may be, is an exceptionally unpleasant thing, because, unlike most other projectiles, it gives you time to think. What is your first reaction when you hear that droning, zooming noise? Inevitably, it is a hope that the noise won’t stop. You want to hear the bomb pass safely overhead and die away into the distance before the engine cuts out. In other words, you are hoping that it will fall on somebody else. So also when you dodge a shell or an ordinary bomb—but in that case you have only about five seconds to take cover and no time to speculate on the bottomless selfishness of the human being.
"What do we want from you? . . . The first thing that we are calling you to is Islam. . . It is the religion of Jihad in the way of Allah so that Allah's Word and religion reign Supreme. . . The second thing we call you to, is to . . . reject the immoral acts of fornication, homosexuality, intoxicants, gambling, and trading with interest. We call you to all of this that you may be freed from that which you have become caught up in; that you may be freed from the deceptive lies that you are a great nation. . . you are the worst civilization witnessed by the history of mankind . . . You are the nation who, rather than ruling by the Shariah of Allah in its Constitution and Laws, choose to invent your own laws as you will and desire. You separate religion from your policies, contradicting the pure nature which affirms Absolute Authority to the Lord and your Creator. "
In light of this record, the establishment press ought to reflect upon the fact that its 2010 coverage utterly failed to anticipate the most important consequences of electing Paul to the Senate. Go back, as I just did, and read every story The New York Times published about him. Its coverage was representative: The paper paid little attention to his anti-war, pro-civil liberties, pro-checks-and-balances proclivities, though those issues were certain to loom large between 2010 and 2016; it paid some attention to the political import of a possible victory by a Tea Party Republican; and it focused intensely on Paul's position on the Civil Rights Act of 1964, legislation that passed when he was two years old and certainly won't be revisited in the foreseeable future.
This is where a presidential speech could make a difference, as Singer says. The fact that Paul’s filibuster happened at all was a direct indictment of the administration’s own unwillingness to be forthcoming about many of the issues surrounding its counterterror policies. A direct response would allow the administration to move the conversation away from hypotheticals and explain what it is actually doing and where it sees the drone program and the broader “long war” going over the next several years.
Either way, Rand Paul entered the CPAC stage yesterday to the musical stylings of Metallica’s “Enter Sandman,” and full-throated roars of approval from the conservative crowd. First elected in 2010, the junior senator from Kentucky has been on something of a political tear of late, and he built off of the momentum from his social media fueled filibuster to offer a textbook demonstration of his skill at covering libertarian ideas in conservative partisan trappings.
This sort of reasoning contributed to the legal theories articulated in a recently leaked 2011 Justice Department white paper, which asserted that even a U.S. citizen can be targeted and killed outside any "areas of hostilities" if an unspecified "high level official" in the U.S. government concludes that he is a "senior operational leader" of al Qaeda or an "associated force." (The DOJ white paper relies both on law of war arguments and self-defense arguments, often semi-conflating the two.) Public statements by senior U.S. officials suggest that the current standard for targeting non-citizens is far lower: Any suspected "member" of al Qaeda or "associated forces" is targetable, as are those with "unique operational skills that are being leveraged in a planned attack." Even when an individual's identity is not known, targetability may be inferred from patterns of activity detected by surveillance.
Duke1 carried baggage from his past, the voters were willing to overlook that. If he had been afforded the forgiveness an ex-communist gets, he might have won.
David Duke was hurt by his past. How many more Dukes are waiting in the wings without such a taint?
There is an incredibly dramatic moment in 2004 where the head of the FBI, Robert Mueller - Robert S. Mueller III, or Bobby "Three Sticks," as his agents call him - who took office, let's remember, a week before 9/11, confronts the president of the United States in the Oval Office over the White House's secret eavesdropping program that has transgressed its boundaries and overstepped the law and the Constitution.
Through its data mining tactics, through its eavesdropping technologies, they've gone beyond what even the secret court that oversees eavesdropping will authorize.
Mueller wins. Bush eventually backs down, and that is a triumph of the rule of law. And that's what the FBI does and should stand for...
TBOTP has noticed that the junior senator from Kentucky has gotten himself some run in the elite media over the last couple of weeks, including a win in the straw poll conducted last week in the locked ward of the monkeyhouse. (We should always remember that the only real political gift the members of the Paul family have is the ability to win straw polls and small caucuses. Give these people the kitchen and they'll have the den by dinner.) Therefore, hey, look, a new shiny thing!
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