Is trying to assassinate a foreign leader illegal? Executive Order 12333, signed by President Reagan, says "No person employed by or acting on behalf of the United States Government shall engage in, or conspire to engage in, assassination," which confirmed and expanded the bans on assassination laid down by his two prior presidential predecessors. So why is the US government targeting Saddam Hussein and his sons? Has the executive order been secretly (and legitimately) revoked? Should it be? Does it even need to be revoked, even if just for appearance's sake? Has ignoring or revoking it been part of the plan all along? Does the Fourth Convention of the Hague really forbid assassination as well?