October 10, 2011

"I would rather the Obama folks be hypocrites in favor of protecting the national security than principled fools..."

What would John Yoo say?

144 comments:

Dad29 said...

"Where do I get my reputation back?" would be the first question from Yoo.

Robin said...

The fools were those who thought that any of Obama's campaign rhetoric was serious or adult in any fashion.

Quayle said...

It is impossible to be a principled fool.

It is more likely to be a fool that is standing on a phony principle or on an imminently convenient but not truly believed principle.

And so now we have opened wide the door allowing the president, without judicial review, to put American citizens on a kill list.

So the only thing we need fear in the future is how malleable the term "“imminent risk" becomes.

And in this I have zero confidence that it won't become conveniently malleable to fit any unpopular critic of America.

Obama is far, far worse than Bush.

traditionalguy said...

Ouch indeed.

They declared war first.

Good job Obama.

America's Politico said...

Sunday night met with the campaign team of the greatest POTUS ever. Totally agree: GOP is screwed. Big time. The team is every-where, every place in the USofA. GOP cannot win TX (you heard it here first), MA (same), etc. Give up now, join us the greatest team (Obama-Biden). By joining the WINNING team, you will be happy. Do you want to be happy?

Maguro said...

Yeah, would one of the smart liberals on this board please explain to me why it is totally OK to assassinate Al-Alwaki but a hideous war crime to waterboard KSM.

I have a feeing the answer is "I don't care. Obama is awesome".

The Drill SGT said...

Sounds like Yoo has far more principles than the folks that replaced him.

One doesn't have to agree with Yoo's orginial memos to find a certain irony in the O'bama flip flops here...

I'm shocked :)

Rialby said...

Wow, I just finished reading that and that line jumped right off the page. Although I don't want any POTUS given the ability to exterminate Americans there are cases that need to be considered. Yoo and Krauthammer have definitely made a case in my mind for this policy.

Fred4Pres said...

I remember reading Marty Lederman's daily outrages over John Yoo and the Bush Administration. Andrew Sullivan used to fawn over this stuff. Yet...here we are.

Now this is really a no brainer. You pick up a gun and start waiving it around...say...Chicago and there is a high chance you will be shot by the police. If you are living overseas (under the protection of a country) and directing terror attacks against the United States, you can't really complain when they fire a missile at you. Ruby Ridge this is not.

Rialby said...

Krauthammer talked on FNC about how Lincoln ordered the battlefield killing of 10s of thousands of "Americans" who had risen up against their country on American soil no less.

rhhardin said...

"If it is ridiculous to attack first principles, it is more ridiculous to defend them against these same attacks."

Lautreamont

But today _principles_ is used to mean political narrative.

Fred4Pres said...

Maguro, I was against waterboarding. Still am, for a host of reasons. But I said that it was almost certain that the overreaction to that would lead to Jihadi leaders being killed rather than captured. Why bother? They are too much trouble alive.

And it has happened exactly like that.

While I am shocked by the incompetency of the Obama administration on economics and government spending...I am glad that they have managed not to totally screw up national security. I think there are patriots making sure that Eric Holder and his band of fools are kept well out of those areas of government.

Kirby Olson said...

Obama's people should try to sell nukes to terrorists so that they can track who's trying to buy them. Seems like a smart follow-up to Fast and Furious.

Mick said...

"Obama Folks" are committing or aiding in treason for allowing the Usurpation of the Presidency, and for turning a willfully blind eye toward it.

Some would say that Awlaki would be a natural born Citizen, eligible for OTUS due to simple birth in America, w/o regard to parentage--- Nonsense!!!

http://naturalborncitizen.wordpress.com/

James said...

Unfortunately Yoo dilutes the impact of his statement with his reference to "Afghani battlefield." The Afghani is the currency of Afghanistan while Afghans are the natives.

Moose said...

Me, personally, I'm waiting to hear Sully and Dahlia weigh in on this. I was already greatly amused by Greenwald's runon paragraph on this. I suspect they'll be somewhat less shocked by this memo than they were by Yoo's. I mean, it is their guy who had it written. I'm sure his Justice lawyers weren't swayed by the President's wishes...

KenK said...

I am not a lawyer so I ask this a layman: If Alawki had stayed in the US and did the same shit he did in Yemen wouldn't he be protected by the First Amendment? I'm not being sarcastic here.

Toshtu said...

"GOP can't win TX..."

Someone needs to recalibrate this bot.

Mick said...

Fred4Pres said

"While I am shocked by the incompetency of the Obama administration on economics and government spending...I am glad that they have managed not to totally screw up national security. I think there are patriots making sure that Eric Holder and his band of fools are kept well out of those areas of government."


There is not one shread of evidence that OBL or Awlaki were actually killed. It is all political theatre to distract from the Usurpers' lack of allegiance and attachment to country. If you say that there IS evidence--- show it.

MisterBuddwing said...

Unfortunately Yoo dilutes the impact of his statement with his reference to "Afghani battlefield." The Afghani is the currency of Afghanistan while Afghans are the natives.

And the adjective form for things related to Afghanistan is... ?

WV: cosper

MadisonMan said...

"Where do I get my reputation back?" would be the first question from Yoo.

Does anyone go into a political office expecting their reputation to remain unsullied?

The Drill SGT said...

KenK said...
If Alawki had stayed in the US and did the same shit he did in Yemen wouldn't he be protected by the First Amendment? I'm not being sarcastic here.


The speech part, sure.

The operational planning of terror campaigns and the felonious conspiracy to commit same, no.

Hoosier Daddy said...

"... I am not a lawyer so I ask this a layman: If Alawki had stayed in the US and did the same shit he did in Yemen wouldn't he be protected by the First Amendment? I'm not being sarcastic here...'

I'm not sure conspiring and providing assistance to Islamic terrorists bent on killing Americans falls under the First Amendment.

Anonymous said...

This is GOP:

Mick: "There is not one shread of evidence that OBL or Awlaki were actually killed."

God help us.

Dead Julius said...

...and won't it be time soon to expand the definition of "terrorist"?

After all, the real terrorists are those who operate here in the homeland, promoting anti-government dissent. Some of the worst are those who widely distribute subversive writings-- like, for instance, Glenn Greenwald.

What's to stop Obama from assassinating Greenwald? He has the power now, thanks to these OLC opinions and the fact that all branches of the federal government accept them. He just decrees that Greenwald is a "terrorist" and... voilà!... Greenwald gets got. Now you have a better Salon magazine and a stark warning to anyone who might be tempted to speak out in the future.

The government already considers someone who mints his own coins to be a "terrorist", noting too that such minting is "every bit as insidious" as acts of violence. So while you might think that this scenario is far-fetched, you must admit that we have already started to travel down this road.

Hoosier Daddy said...

But yeah, it would have been better if we could have sent in some special forces dudes, maybe dressed like ninjas to arrest him when he left his cave in Yemen to stock up on groceries.

KenK said...

Okay Drill Sgt. I understand. But the second part wouldn't be an automatic no-appeal death sentence. I am just very leery of having some lawyer in the pay of the WH/pres saying "okay go ahead and kill this guy here's a memo". Where is the check or balance on this?

edutcher said...

For once, I have to agree with Barry over Dubya.

But this will make Cook happy.

Maguro said...

Yeah, would one of the smart liberals on this board please explain to me why it is totally OK to assassinate Al-Alwaki but a hideous war crime to waterboard KSM.

I have a feeing the answer is "I don't care. Obama is awesome".


The hard core ones, like Cook, will say they're all hideous war crimes.

The rest will ask why you're not supporting the President; you know, aren't you right wingers patriotic? Actually, it just shows what racists you are that you refuse to support the President for doing something you think Bush should have done.

Fred4Pres said...

Drill Sgt nails it. Alawaki was targeted for actual terrorist plots and attacks, not for speech.

And if he was in the U.S. doing it, yeah they would arrest him (if they could). And if he resisted he would likely be shot.

And Mick, I totally agree Obama is pursuing a terror campaign to get reelected. But I am pretty sure Osama bin Laden was killed, because al Qaeda and bin Laden's family says he was killed.

G Joubert said...

Where is the check or balance on this?

When it comes to war, there is little in the way of checks and balances. Let Al-Alwaki's survivors and estate sue for wrongful death and violation of his civil rights and see where it gets them.

Hagar said...

This Star Trek stuff is too easy. We do need to think about this and put some controls in place.

Nobody regrets al Awlaki's passing, but if a White House flunky can certify him for elimination with no checks on the order; then who on this Earth's surface is safe?

I also object to this harping on al Awlaki being a native born American citizen. He patently was a jihadi, and so could legitimately be made war on, but is this war? And why should it be OK to kill , say, a Britisb subject by Administrative fiat, but not an American?

And bin Laden. I would feel better, I think, if they had taken him, his wives and children, and any bystanding villagers out with a Tomahawk, rather than the way it was done. I keep having this qweasy feeling that the SEALs were told, "Whatever you do, don't bring him back alive, so that I will have a problem with Eric Holder throwing a hissy fit."

Again, no one mourns bin Laden, but this kind of thing does not have a good effect on us.

KenK said...

I understand the level of partisanship and mistrust here but honestly folks I don't want WH lawyers crafting death warrants for Americans. That would be ANY president IMHO. Dem, GOP or whatever. To me this isn't a "that was then, this is now", or "go team red" go team blue, or Obama is awesome" thing with me. This has been our standard since the begining:"No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, ... nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law;" WH lawyer memos based on secret evidence and signed off by the pres isn't due process to me. And no I din't go to law school.

Scott M said...

"Whatever you do, don't bring him back alive, so that I will have a problem with Eric Holder throwing a hissy fit."

The problem with that theory is that you're assuming Holder has principles. The drip-drip-drip every day makes it look less and less likely that's the case.

The Drill SGT said...

KenK said...
I am just very leery of having some lawyer in the pay of the WH/pres saying "okay go ahead and kill this guy here's a memo". Where is the check or balance on this?


Yeah, it's a can of worms...

On the other hand, the accident of American citizenship, should not provide immunity when one has effectively renounced it by committing treason in the service of a foreign power, be it a State or an NGO.

I think one of the deciding factors ought to be whether the alleged felon has fled US jursidiction and is subject to legal means...

Is he in the US? arrest him
Is he in public in a foreign country? extradict him, or go to war with them...
Is he covert where we can't snatch him? perhaps a hellfire is the answer.

I do think we need to publicly announce both our policy and those on the list, so that they can seek to clear themselves if they desire.

No secret lists seems like a fair compromise.

Dead Julius said...

Drill Sgt nails it. Alawaki was targeted for actual terrorist plots and attacks, not for speech.

Here's a domestic "terrorist" that the U.S. recently arrested for pure speech, without any indication of an "actual plot or attack".

Should he have just been summarily executed rather than arrested?

Hagar said...

The Constitution does forbid "Bills of Attainder." Does it also say something about "Proscription?"

edutcher said...

Dead Julius said...

Drill Sgt nails it. Alawaki was targeted for actual terrorist plots and attacks, not for speech.

Here's a domestic "terrorist" that the U.S. recently arrested for pure speech, without any indication of an "actual plot or attack".

Should he have just been summarily executed rather than arrested?


No other way to get at Awalaki.

Mick said...

Anonymous said...
"This is GOP:

Mick: "There is not one shread of evidence that OBL or Awlaki were actually killed."

God help us."


I am Independent--- WHERE is the evidence?

Fred4Pres said...

Dead Julius, I support free speech. Calling for the violent overthrow of the United States and making videos for the recruiting of holy warriors for terrorist attacks on Americans is not protected speech. But, I would hope there is more to that arrest than what was in that article.

Mick said...

Fred4 Pres said,

"And Mick, I totally agree Obama is pursuing a terror campaign to get reelected. But I am pretty sure Osama bin Laden was killed, because al Qaeda and bin Laden's family says he was killed."


I am not saying that OBL is alive. There are reports that he had died years ago. Where is the evidence that He was killed by the now assainated (dead men tell no tales) Seal Team 6? WHERE is the evidence that Awlaki was killed? You are awfully trusting of the Usurper! WHERE is the interview w/ OBL's family? AQ wouldn't be lying that OBL was dead if he was already dead before.

Hoosier Daddy said...

Julius, you might want to re read your link.


Federal authorities allege that Ahmad created the video in September 2010 on behalf of Lashkar-i-Taiba, which advocates jihad against enemies and is thought to be behind the high-profile 2008 attack in Mumbai, India, that left 166 dead.

roesch-voltaire said...

Maguro-- water boarding produced little of useful knowledge, killing Al-Alwaki eliminated an actual and known terrorist,something the Bush administration had difficulty doing in part because of their continued support of a corrupt Pakistan. That said, if one reads Terrorist In Love, by Ballen, you realize that we can not win this fight unless courages Muslims resist the extremism.

KenK said...

Objections:
No other way to "get" alwaki. Let him be until there are. Painful but the hard choices about principle often are.
He was only born here. That don't make a real American. Well, that's what the law is bub and we have to live up to that standard. And congress can change the law about birth citizenship any time it wants.
Obama (who killed) is awesome but Bush (who allowed torture) is a war criminal. Whatever both are morally wrong and illegal. A pox on both your houses here Dems & Reps.

Hoosier Daddy said...

"... No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, ... nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law;".."

So one can then basically leave the country, join a terrorist organization, hide out in the hinterlands and plot attacks against your homeland with the assurance that you won't be harmed because it would violate due process.

Sounds like a recipie for victory to me.

Dead Julius said...

@Fred4Pres-

But, I would hope there is more to that arrest than what was in that article.

If the Administration just summarily executed him instead of arresting him, then they don't need to make their case in court and the question of whether there is more to the arrest is moot.

The more the judiciary questions the President's assassination powers, the more he is motivated to use them to avoid such questioning.

Assassination is a trump card in the game of Checks 'n Balances.

Similarly for the power of indefinite detention without trial. If the court case is too hard, then just call 'em a "terrorist" and invoke "national security" and keep 'em in prison! Plus in prison you can humiliate (and torture?) them so that they implicate whatever other "terrorists" you want implicated. That scenario is already going on with Bradley Manning.

Hoosier Daddy said...

Then again if you don't pal around with Islamic terrorists in foreign lands you won't end up on the receiving end of a Hellfire.

Mick said...

Show me the evidence that OBL and Awlaki were recently killed by the US.

http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/al-awlaki-strike-kill-bombmaker/story?id=14655903

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jpsvaTIa7Kc&feature=related

KenK said...

Congress could change rule #43 to permit trials in absentia. If Alwaki wants to contest the charges let him show up and do so. And let the feds, CIA or who ever show up and show their evidence in a court before a judge. I am not a lawyer but I do believe that congress can and should revisit a lot of this stuff to make it more applicable to the day and age we live in now

Donald Douglas said...

Posted this on Sunday: 'Prosecute War Criminals David Barron and Martin Lederman!'.

bgates said...

Does anyone go into a political office expecting their reputation to remain unsullied?

What political office did John Yoo hold?

edutcher said...

KenK said...

Objections:
No other way to "get" alwaki. Let him be until there are. Painful but the hard choices about principle often are.


First, he was directing operations. That makes him a valid military target.

Second, he was exhorting others to commit attacks, also making him a target.

We've also done it before. Krauthammer noted the most famous case when Abe Lincoln ordered the battlefield execution of hundreds of thousands of "traitors" who were American citizens.

Fred4Pres said...

Dead Julius, I agree American citizens detained need to be tried of charges if captured. But being a citizen is not some magic sheild if you take up arms against the United States. That was true with the Whiskey Rebellion, that was true in the Civil War, that was true for German-Americans who went back and fought for Deutchland, and it is true now.

I expect accountability and restraint (and I agree that this policy could be abused), but we are at war with al Qaeda and if you are on the battle field on its side you are a fair target.

Mick, do I have proof bin Laden and Alwaki are dead...no. Maybe it is a big friggin lie. But I do not have proof of that either and frankly the conspiracy to pull off faking bin Laden's death would be so complex that it would require a degree of competency that I am not sure the Obama administration has.

I will take the story at face value, that the teams (put in place by George Bush) hunting for bin Laden found him, that Obama dithered at that and finally gave them the green light for them to take him out, and the SEALs did a magnificent job (no thanks to the President).

Then again, did they really kill him? Perhaps he did not die and that is why they were so strange on burying him at sea?

EDH said...

Practically speaking, Obama ordering the "hit" probably had as much to do with his own imminent electoral defeat if it had leaked out that he passed on the opportunity to kill al-Awlaki, rather than any imminent threat to the nation.

Robert Cook said...

Yoo will never get his reputation back, to answer the first post of this thread. He disgraced himself and will always be infamous for ruling that torture is "legal," (sic) and Barron and Lederman have disgraced themselves and will always be infamous for saying it is legal for the President to order the murder of an American citizen.

Obama? He's been a disgrace from the start.

For those who may applaud any of these disgraced and disgraceful men and their despicable legal opinions, Thomas Paine had relevant admonition:

"He that would make his own liberty secure, must guard even his enemy from oppression; for if he violates this duty, he establishes a precedent that will reach to himself."

Maguro said...

Maguro-- water boarding produced little of useful knowledge, killing Al-Alwaki eliminated an actual and known terrorist,something the Bush administration had difficulty doing in part because of their continued support of a corrupt Pakistan.

Uh huh. But didn't capturing KSM and keeping him at Guantanamo Bay eliminate an actual and known terrorist?

The only difference is that we got the benefit of actually interrogating KSM to learn more about their operations, which can only have helped our anti-terror efforts.

And of course KSM got the benefit of living and getting his gubmint-issued Koran and three squares a day at Gitmo, whereas al-Alwaki got a Hellfire missile up his ass, so there's that as well.

Hard to see where the Obama approach is more legal, more humane or more practically useful than the Bush approach.

Robert Cook said...

"Yeah, would one of the smart liberals on this board please explain to me why it is totally OK to assassinate Al-Alwaki but a hideous war crime to waterboard KSM."

It's not okay. Obama is a murderer and war criminal.

Curious George said...

First the bullshit presented as fact:

"roesch-voltaire said...
Maguro-- water boarding produced little of useful knowledge, killing Al-Alwaki eliminated an actual and known terrorist..."

And now the facts:

"CIA Director Leon Panetta admitted to Brian Williams on Tuesday night’s broadcast of NBC Nightly News that waterboarding detainees contributed information that was ultimately used to locate Osama bin Laden."

“High-value information came from interrogations in which those methods were used and provided a deeper understanding of the Al Qaeda organization that was attacking this country," Blair wrote in a memo to the intelligence community the same day Obama ordered the release of legal memos detailing the techniques, which included waterboarding, slamming detainees into "flexible" walls and prolonged sleep deprivation.

Mick said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Robert Cook said...

"Now this is really a no brainer...If you are living overseas (under the protection of a country) and directing terror attacks against the United States...."

and:

"Drill Sgt nails it. Alawaki was targeted for actual terrorist plots and attacks, not for speech."

No evidence has been presented even in the court of public opinion, much less in a court of law, (required by the Bill of Rights), that Awlaki was complicit in any planning or targeting or directing of any terror plots.

Now, it may be he was, but we don't know that; all we have are assurances by anonymous govt. spokespersons making those assertions. If assertions by the govt. suffice to establish guilt, why don't we just dismantle our courts and allow the police and prison wardens carte blanche to apprehend and punish accused lawbreakers at will and as they see fit?

You here who see Obama as a commie radical intent upon the destruction of the United States seem oddly sanguine at his claim to have the power to assassinate Americans at will.

Thomas Paine (to repeat):

"He that would make his own liberty secure, must guard even his enemy from oppression; for if he violates this duty, he establishes a precedent that will reach to himself."

This, in fact, can be said to be the core rationale of the Bill of Rights, for those self-proclaimed "patriots" out there.

Robert Cook said...

"CIA Director Leon Panetta admitted to Brian Williams on Tuesday night’s broadcast of NBC Nightly News that waterboarding detainees contributed information that was ultimately used to locate Osama bin Laden."

Since when does the self-interested claim of a party to a crime satisfy as justification for the crime, or as proof of the crime's efficacy, (or that said efficacy makes the crime not a crime)?

Kirk Parker said...

Guys,

Al-Alwaki was someone who was (a) waging war against the US, and (b) attacked on the battlefield outside the US (and yes, Yemen is definitely that and most definitely falls under the relevant AUMF.)

My concern, therefore, is not "Why did Obama approve this"? Rather, it's "What the heck is the commander-in-chief doing micromanaging day-to-day military operations"? Mid-level in CENTCOM is the highest this should have needed to go for approval. Everybody's talking about Obama as the second coming of Jimmy Carter, which is bad enough. The last thing we want him to be is the second coming of LBJ, poring over maps and picking out targets.

Mick said...

Newspaper in Yemen says "no proof" Awlaki was killed there.

http://main.omanobserver.om/node/67560

cubanbob said...

What is the purpose of the Armed Forces if not to kill people who are waging war against the United States?

So the guy was a US citizen. So what. He made war against the US and was in the service of an illegal combatant who is presently warring against the US. A righteous killing of an illegal enemy combatant. A broken clock is right twice a day and with this the Obama Administration has finally been right once a day.

Mick said...

Awlaki was also "killed" in 2009.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I0rkjUhWbiA

hoyden said...

Liberals spend a lot of time slicing and dicing the news in order to portray Bush as Evil and Obama as Good.

I wonder if the targets of interest would rather be tortured by Bush or assassinated by Obama?

VW: deduc. Defeat of deduc went over defense before detail.

Robert Cook said...

"Al-Alwaki was someone who was (a) waging war against the US, and (b) attacked on the battlefield outside the US (and yes, Yemen is definitely that and most definitely falls under the relevant AUMF.)"

I hear a bunch of assertions, but I don't see any trial transcripts or evidence proving any of it, and no conviction or sentence of punishment handed down by a court of law.

"He that would make his own liberty secure, must guard even his enemy from oppression; for if he violates this duty, he establishes a precedent that will reach to himself." (Thomas Paine.)

Hagar said...

The battlefield analogy does not hold up. Lincoln could have "condemned" the CSA all he wanted to with no effect if the folks in the North had not also believed that preserving the Union and/or eliminating slavery were causes worth dying for.

Working a "playstation" in Nevada and firing Hellfire missiles at persons proscribed by the sitting Administration is not warfare, it is more like Dungeons & Dragons or Grand Theft Auto, except that a real-life someone, somewhere winds up dead for reasons we are not quite sure of.

KenK said...

Let me ask you Educater. When Chile's secret police car-bombed an "enemy of the regime" in Washington, DC in 1976 killing 2 and injuring 1 their agents were prosecuted and convicted in American courts for murder. That's how we react when this sort of stuff happens in America. We didn't excuse extra-judicial killings because Letelier, his aide and her husband "couldn't be arrested" or some shit.

If the PRC, NoKo, Iran etc. decided to kill dissidents who broadcast or post to the Internet exhorting active resistance to their home state's regimes from America would that be okay too? Just asking.

Curious George said...

Robert Cook said...
"CIA Director Leon Panetta admitted to Brian Williams on Tuesday night’s broadcast of NBC Nightly News that waterboarding detainees contributed information that was ultimately used to locate Osama bin Laden."

Since when does the self-interested claim of a party to a crime satisfy as justification for the crime, or as proof of the crime's efficacy, (or that said efficacy makes the crime not a crime)?"

Neither Panetta nor Blair had any connection to the waterboarding. Panetta was a private citizen and Blair was a navy admiral.

The Drill SGT said...

Kirk Parker said..The last thing we want him to be is the second coming of LBJ, poring over maps and picking out targets.

I agree with your general premise, but will expand and make a distinction.

Sometimes it's ok for a President to get involved in determing whether to bomb some sensitive target. Imagine putting a hellfire into a house full of the Red Brigades, when the house stood near the grounds of the Vatican, as an example (weak though it is).

The bigger issue with LBJ, was his "sending messages" to Uncle Ho and General Giap, by whether we bombed this target or that this week. Thinking that he was demonstrating restraint, rather than showing weakness. That is why Nixon's Linebacker offensive was more productive than LBJ's Rolling Thunder.

Quaestor said...

Fred4Pres wrote:
If you are living overseas (under the protection of a country) and directing terror attacks against the United States, you can't really complain when they fire a missile at you.

I not sure the record supports the notion that Anwar al-Awlaki was under the same degree and quality of protection from the Yemeni government as Osama bin Ladin and his organization received from the Taliban. I not even sure Yemen is even a country in a meaningful sense beyond that it is a named territory that isn't within Saudi Arabia or Oman.

That being said allow me to confess that I am delighted with the violent death of Al-Awaki and anyone who practices or advocates war against my country, however I'm not in the Office of Legal Counsel so I can talk big and fierce and get off scot-free.

After playing it all high and mighty in the campaign of 2008 Obama came up against the same irreducible conundrums of war against a non-state actor as had confronted the privious administration, and adopted and even expanded many of the same tactics the Bush administration pioneered to keep this country safe, however, the killing of Anwar al-Awaki is a special case.

Bush had to deal with at least two American jihadis, John Walker Lindh and Jose Pedillo, and in both cases the maximum penalty was unavailable due to lack of evidence. Though they fully deserved a traitor's death they escaped with prison sentences. Both of these insects are causes célèbres in the salons of the great and good. Al-Awaki is even more problematic. It's doubtful even a charge under Tile 18 § 2339A could be made to stick because al-Awaki was primarily an al-Qaeda propagandist rather than a supplier of material support. His position with the Islamic terrorist movement was analogus to that of William Luther Pierce, the author of the neo-Nazi revenge fantasy which inspired the murderers of David Berg, John Byrd and the many victims of Tim McVey. So what do you do with free speech that leads to acts of mass murder? Barron and Lederman advised Obama to act expediently to remove an enemy of the United States, and not to pursue Al-Awaki with a warrant and handcuffs.

Obama, Lederman, Barron and the whole Democrat party deserve to have coals of opprobrium heaped on their heads for the vicious hypocrisy of their attacks on George W. Bush.

Robert Cook said...

Former "CIA Director" (and present Secretary of Defense) Panetta is certainly self-interested, even if he is not party to the crimes.

I didn't mention Blair.

Fred4Pres said...

Robert Cook, Thomas Paine also praised and then vilified George Washington and ended up in prison in France when his comrades of the French Revolution betrayed him (and George warned him things would go badly there). While I like things about Paine, his judgment was often not the best.

Ultimately, we are entitled to protect ourselves. It is a fundamental right of individuals and its extends to a government protecting its people. But it can be abused and we are a nation of laws. I am not a big fan of waterboarding, but as outrages go it is rather down on my list (as his killing Alwaki).

Mick's paranoia may be justified. There have been plenty of reports of both bin Laden and Alwaki's premature deaths and the lack of proof is troublesome. But right now I will assume they killed them. While there are certainly people craven enough in the Obama Administration to try it, a conspiracy to fake it would require too many people to be effective.

Fred4Pres said...

Quaestor, well said. Johnny Walker and Padilla would have been shot in the past. But I am okay with them being convicted as they were. Cause celebrities or the left, they also plead guilty.

Quaestor said...

Mick wrote:
If you say that there IS evidence--- show it.

Please explain A-Qaeda's motivation for cooperating with this alleged conspiracy.

Fred4Pres said...

The CIA/NSA maybe be holding Osama in some black facility (hense the whole burial at sea stuff). That would be rather hypocritical, but certainly possible.

Bruce Hayden said...

Working a "playstation" in Nevada and firing Hellfire missiles at persons proscribed by the sitting Administration is not warfare, it is more like Dungeons & Dragons or Grand Theft Auto, except that a real-life someone, somewhere winds up dead for reasons we are not quite sure of.

Reminds me a bit of Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card. In the book, the Earth is under attack by aliens. All the kids on the planet are tested, and the smartest sent to Battle School, where they are taught how to fight. Part of this is simulations of space combat. At the final simulation, Ender breaks the rules, and destroys the home planet of the enemy, and then finds out that the simulations were really actually remote battles, and Earth's enemies have now been destroyed.

The kids were used because they would be better at it than adults - possibly after seeing how good kids can get at video games.

Quaestor said...

Hagar wrote:
Working a "playstation" in Nevada and firing Hellfire missiles at persons proscribed by the sitting Administration is not warfare...

That's just absurd, Hagar. Do you suppose the crewmen of our SSBNs think the contents of those tubes are just "virtual reality"? Did the members of the 509th Composite Group believe that what they being asked to do would not kill real people?

Quaestor said...

Correction: "Did the members of the 509th Composite Group believe that what they being asked to do would not kill real people?" should read "Did the members of the 509th Composite Group believe that what they were being asked to do would not kill real people?

Hoosier Daddy said...

"... If the PRC, NoKo, Iran etc. decided to kill dissidents who broadcast or post to the Internet exhorting active resistance to their home state's regimes from America would that be okay too? Just asking...."

Are you seriously comparing Jihadists to political dissidents?

Really?

Hagar said...

Quaestor,

As Bruce Hayden points out, it does not matter what the operators of the "playstations" do or do not believe.

What matters is that unknown persons within the Administration have an easy way to eliminate pesky problems, and we have no way of knowing if those problems were our problems or just theirs.

Robert Cook said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Bruce Hayden said...

Kenneth Anderson has an interesting article on the use of drones against targets in other countries yesterday at volokh.com: What Kind of Drones Arms Race Is Coming?.

One problem I see is the question of where does it end? Both taking out OBL and Awlaki required the intentional violation of other countries' sovereignty and integrity of their borders. Sure, the Pakis were harboring OBL, and the Yeminis not only doing that, but also it not really being much of a country to start with. But how would we feel if the tables were turned, and, for example, an Iranian sub launched a cruse missile at the White House?

The problem there is that there are international norms that have been in place for centuries, that you need to declare war in order to invade another country (or have UN resolutions allowing such, as we did in Iraq). For awhile we seemed to follow this in Vietnam, but later, the blatant military invasion of an (soon to be ditched) ally caused us to respond there through air strikes and mining of harbors.

In these cases though, the sovereignty of countries is being intentionally and somewhat publicly violated to take out specific individuals.

Where does it end? Where are the new international norms going to end up? Does taking out a single military facility fall under the same rules? (like a plant making WDMs)?

Quaestor said...

Are you seriously comparing Jihadists to political dissidents?

It's a reductio ad absurdum argument, obviously. But I think the point is the First Amendment is generally content-neutral. I don't believe any of us supports al-Qaeda or its goals, but the question is did al-Awaki have the right to say the thing he said? My answer would be yes, but he also said he was at war with America and he had a right to be taken at his word as well.

Robert Cook said...

"Ultimately, we are entitled to protect ourselves. It is a fundamental right of individuals and its extends to a government protecting its people. But it can be abused and we are a nation of laws. I am not a big fan of waterboarding, but as outrages go it is rather down on my list (as his killing Alwaki)."

If you find the use of torture by our government or our assassination without due process of an American citizen to be "rather low down" on your list of outrages, I can't imagine what you would find troubling.

If we make exceptions to the legal and constitutional prohibitions against "cruel and unusual punishment" and (the deprivation of) "life, liberty, or property, without due process of law" in order to "protect ourselves", as you say--(and which brings to mind Franklin's quote: "Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety")--we will utterly fail at self-defense and will simply have put ourselves at greater danger from our own government.

PETER V. BELLA said...

The Obama people are principled foolish hypocrites.

Quaestor said...

Brice Hayden wrote:
In these cases though, the sovereignty of countries is being intentionally and somewhat publicly violated to take out specific individuals...

The sovereignty question works to the advantage of the nations currently involved. Normally nations are responsible for the actions of their citizens and residents, however Pakistan and Yemen always plead helplessness when the question of acts of international terrorism are committed by organization based on the territory of these self-admittedly dysfunctional states. Otherwise the United States would have a legitimate casus belli against those countries.

Unfortunately the US is hardly innocent in this regard. Since 1969 an organization calling it self Irish Northern Aid Committee (Noraid) has been providing funds for various causes in Northern Ireland, including political operations of Sinn Féin, the legal wing of the IRA and indirectly into the coffers of the gunmen -- thanks to the efforts of the late and unlamented Ted Kennedy and other slugs.

Kirk Parker said...

Cookie,

There were no trials for Rommel or Yamamoto, either. Nor for the lowliest private in the Wehrmacht or sailor in the IJN, for that matter.

What was your point?

Robert Cook said...

Kirk Parker,

What is your point?

Fred4Pres said...

Robert Cook, don't misunderstand me. I have consistently been against waterboarding. I am absolutely opposed to torture (and I do consider waterboarding on the wrong side of the line of what constitute's torture). That said, no I do not have any real concerns about targeting a guy like Alawaki in Yemen when he is self admittedly engaged in jihad against the United States.

As far as the waterboarding of KSM and the other high value al Qaeda guys who got it, I was against it. I think the proper way to do interrogations is this way.

But even if I consider it a mistake, I do not consider Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld war criminals given the circumstances. As I do not consider Obama a criminal for targeting Alawaki. I agree we have to be cautious about this and understand bad and unintended abuses can happen.

John McCain softened his stance on waterboarding (a bit) after speaking to Cheney (Sullivan vilified him for it). McCain is still opposed to it but I suspect Cheney revealed to him some information they got from KSM. I am not an ends justifies the means sort of guy, but I also recognize we are at war and bad things happen.

And I note the hypocrisy of Sullivan in not going after Obama.

Quaestor said...

What is your point?

Are you really that obtuse, Robert?

Robert Cook said...

"That said, no I do not have any real concerns about targeting a guy like Alawaki in Yemen when he is self admittedly engaged in jihad against the United States."

What do you mean by "self-admittedly engaged in jihad against the United States?"

Do you mean just that he had stated he was in favor of those who make war against America, or do you assert he admitted having participated in the active planning or direction of actual terror plots against the United States?

Hoosier Daddy said...

"... What matters is that unknown persons within the Administration have an easy way to eliminate pesky problems, and we have no way of knowing if those problems were our problems or just theirs..."

I'm pretty sure the Government has always had this ability.

Robert Cook said...

"Are you really that obtuse, Robert?"

I guess I am, as it seems Kirk Parker is making a comparison between dissimilar things, so...what point does he--or do you--think he's making?

Quaestor said...

Robert Cook wrote:
... or do you assert he admitted having participated in the active planning or direction of actual terror plots against the United States?

I assert no such thing because al-Awaki himself studious avoided such self-incrimination. You're arguing like a sophist, Cookie. Don't go there as you're not up to it.

Hoosier Daddy said...

"... What do you mean by "self-admittedly engaged in jihad against the United States?".."

The fact that he was whacked along with three other al qaeda members?

Robert Cook said...

"... What matters is that unknown persons within the Administration have an easy way to eliminate pesky problems, and we have no way of knowing if those problems were our problems or just theirs..."

"I'm pretty sure the Government has always had this ability."

Yes, and this is troubling enough. What distinguishes our recent assassination and makes it a grave danger to us all is that previous such killings--assuming, as we can--they have taken place, were conducted covertly, and with the danger that if discovered, there would be legal repercussions, while the White House now asserts it has a legal right to order and execute such unilateral extra-judicial killings of American citizens.

The President is asserting unchecked power of life and death over any of us, at his say so, proudly and out loud.

Quaestor said...

I guess I am, as it seems Kirk Parker is making a comparison between dissimilar things, so...what point does he--or do you--think he's making?

Not dissimilar at all, In war enemy leaders and enemy combatants are to be killed or otherwise rendered harmless. Prosecuting war is not a job for prosecuting counsel.

Robert Cook said...

Qaestor,

I may not be up to your high level of incisive discourse, but you seem awfully careless at reading.
My question was a response to Fred4Pres, not to you.

Quaestor said...

Sorry, Cook. I made the same point earlier.

wv: retryop - military jargon for a mulligan.

Quaestor said...

For your amusement Lederman comments on Yoo.

wv: probar - purposely and repeatedly obscured beyond all recognition

Hoosier Daddy said...

"... Yes, and this is troubling enough. What distinguishes our recent assassination and makes it a grave danger to us all.."

Well really only a danger for those who decide to relocate to a foreign country, join up with a terrorist group and advocate for the killing of your fellow citizens.

I'll lay odds that had al alawaki been holed up in an apartment on fifth avenue in NYC, the FBI would have kicked down his door and frogmarched him to court versus flinging a missile through the window.

Robert Cook said...

"Not dissimilar at all, In war enemy leaders and enemy combatants are to be killed or otherwise rendered harmless. Prosecuting war is not a job for prosecuting counsel."

Completely dissimilar. Rommel was forced to kill himself as a result of his complicity in a plot to assassinate Hitler, (though Rommel himself reputedly preferred that Hitler be arrested and tried for his crimes), in order to save his family from a dire end, and Yamamoto was killed in battle, as were the more lowly soldiers in all the armies.

Awlaki was an American citizen who was protected under the Constitution and was as much entitled to due process of law as any of us; he was not on a battlefield, he was not shot at close range where it was either kill him or be killed by him, and we have not been presented with any proof he was actively engaged in terror plots against us. More pertinent, no such proof was lodged against him in a court of law. All we have is the say so of the government.

If you feel comfortable with the President having unilateral power of life or death over any of us, having unilateral power to suspend our constitutional protections, that's your right, (however stupid it reveals you to be). Your comfort with such power in the hands of one man, however, does not make it acceptable or safe...or legal.

Hoosier Daddy said...

"... and we have not been presented with any proof he was actively engaged in terror plots against us..."

Aside from the fact he was killed along with three other al qaeda members, yeah no proof he was doing nothing nefarious.

Robert Cook said...

"Well really only a danger for those who decide to relocate to a foreign country, join up with a terrorist group and advocate for the killing of your fellow citizens."

A danger to any citizen whom the government decides is enough of a nuisance to warrant killing. The excuses and accusations and allegations can alway be made to justify the crime.

How do you or any of us know that that by 2018 or 2020 circumtances in this country won't have devolved to the point where anyone uttering any criticism of our dear Leader(s) won't be considered enemies of the state, subject to imprisonment, torture, or execution at will?

"He that would make his own liberty secure, must guard even his enemy from oppression; for if he violates this duty, he establishes a precedent that will reach to himself."

Thomas Paine's words--and his warning--are as current today as when he wrote them.

Hoosier Daddy said...

"... though Rommel himself reputedly preferred that Hitler be arrested and tried for his crimes).."

Which was discussed and discarded as unreasonable because the SS would have turned on the High Command not to mention which Wehrmacht units would not do so as well.

Hoosier Daddy said...

"... How do you or any of us know that that by 2018 or 2020 circumtances in this country won't have devolved to the point where anyone uttering any criticism of our dear Leader(s) won't be considered enemies of the state, subject to imprisonment, torture, or execution at will?.."

You make a good point. Liberals and Democrats have charged any criticism of Obama as racism so its not a stretch to think treason won't be forthcoming.

Robert Cook said...

"Aside from the fact he was killed along with three other al qaeda members, yeah no proof he was doing nothing nefarious."

That equals zero proof of anything. How do we even know the others killed with him were members of AQ?

Even if he was doing something nefarious, and this is the point, he was entitled to due process of law.
The goverment could just as easily bomb a building where you are residing--or "hiding out"--and all other residents in the building can, post mortem, be said to have been members of the notorious Hoosier Freemen Against American Tyranny or what have you. See? Proof! They were terrorists, so you must have been, too!

Hoosier Daddy said...

I'm pretty sure Thomas Paine wasn't thinking of al qaeda as the type of enemy they faced back then.

Hoosier Daddy said...

"... That equals zero proof of anything..."

Of course not. Ordinary citizens hang out with Islamic terrorists all the time. Nothing to see here.

We've arrested quite a few terrorists right here at home and put them on trial. You being a bright lad should be able to figure out why and the difference with Alawaki.

Robert Cook said...

Al Qaeda are nothing! I can't believe how many so-called Macho American Patriots fall for the myth of Al Qaeda as some sort of all-powerful, omnipresent threat-of-threats. We'd be more justified in making existential threats out of the Mafia, or the Bloods or Crips, or any one of the many criminal organizations operating within our country. AQ are just a convenient bogeyman seized on by our government to replace the former--and more serious--threat of Soviet Russia. Having an implacable, omnipresent, unkillable foe justifies suppression of civil liberties at home, the expansion of state power, the diversion of monetary resources to military expeditures rather than to more productive, constructive, and socially beneficial expenditures.

Jeezus! Hasn't anyone around here read 1984?

And Paine's truism applies no less even if AQ were such an all-powerful threat as the government wants us to believe.

Quaestor said...

Robert Cook wrote:
Completely dissimilar. Rommel was forced to kill himself... and Yamamoto was killed in battle...

Rommel is a bad example, however he was the target of numerous assassination attempts. That he escaped death at the hands of the British doesn't really constitute an different case from al-Awaki, who also escaped at least one other attempt on his life by the Americans applying the same principle. Furthermore if you believe that there is a fundamental difference between the killing of Yamamoto, an enemy admiral, by a force of USAAC pilots dispatched specifically to kill him, and the killing of Anwar al-Awaki, an enemy recruiter and propagandist, by an armed UAV controlled by USAF personnel specifically ordered to kill him then you are ignoring at least three points: Firstly, though Yamamoto was an enemy commander his status as such was pursuant to his status as a subject of the Emperor of Japan and a officer in his service, an as such obliged to make war on the United States. Yamamoto may have been a war criminal in that he planned the Pearl Harbor attack, but that is debatable. Al-Awaki, however, as an American citizen was also a traitor as well as an officer in an enemy armed force, therefore doubly liable to the extreme sanction. Citizenship is more than the accidents of birth, it also implies allegiance. This is why all this argle-bargle about Obama's impeachable offense is just that. It's going nowhere. Al-awaki's words are writings prove his treasonable intent. Secondly, both Yamamoto and al-Awaki were beyond the reach of feasible capture unless you want to risk dozens of more valuable lives in an operation not likely to produce anything but corpses. Thirdly, if the point of a military operation is specifically to kill a specific person its an assassination -- that's the terminology used.

Quaestor said...

Robert Cook wrote:
Jeezus! Hasn't anyone around here read 1984?

I suppose many have, and more closely than you have evidently.

Robert Cook said...

"Ordinary citizens hang out with Islamic terrorists all the time. Nothing to see here."

For all you know, they might. After all, the people we demonize as Islamic terrorists are members of their communities, and many with whom they associate probably are not affiliated with them or their activities. (And this is to accept that those killed with Awlaki were AQ members. for which we have only the government's say-so.) By the same token, we have never killed any innocent non-combatants in Iraq or Afghanistan; if they were there, and we killed them, they were terrorists!

You're a hopeless case.

Robert Cook said...

"Al-Awaki, however, as an American citizen was also a traitor as well as an officer in an enemy armed force...."

Proof, please? Has evidence of that been presented at trial? Has a judge or jury found that so on the evidence?

It's people like you and Hoosier who are enabling the accretion of police state powers to the government, and who will ultimately be responsible when we discover we are ruled by an outright tyranny.

Robert Cook said...

"I suppose many have, and more closely than you have evidently."

Evidently not.

Fred4Pres said...

Robert Cook, how much is Ron Paul paying you?

Yeah, you're right, al Qaeda is no big deal. Are you going to give us a Truther argument next? What an idiot you are.

Ron Paul's fiscal policies make sense, but the man is friggin bat shit crazy on foriegn policy. I do not want to see America engaged in a bunch of foreign engagements all the time, but certain threats cannot be ignored.

Fred4Pres said...

Quaestor said...
What is your point?

Are you really that obtuse, Robert?

10/10/11 1:57 PM


Yes, Robert is a Paulbot.

Pragmatist said...

Even police shoot criminals that they cannot capture or are a danger. Killing him does not change him from criminal to combatant. And there is a difference between killing known terrorists and imprisoning and torturing people who are suspected terrorists and are not given a day in court. I think O could put his record up against W any day and not have to worry. At least he did not kill 4000+ looking for Osama in the wrong place.

Hoosier Daddy said...

I'm a hopeless case? Hahahaha!

That's pretty funny Cook. You subscribe to the ridiculous theory that the country is run by some shadowy elite plutocracy yet when 3000 Americans are slaughtered by Islamic terrorists you insist they're a made up threat.

Hysterical.

Pragmatist said...

The "poor Al-Waki was an American Citizen" crowd are really funny. He was also a terrorist and a person who was on the run and trying to kill Americans. And he is now barking in hell where he belongs. Why is the Right so soft on terrorism all of a sudden? Embarrassed their man not only could not get them (did he really want to???)but killed thousands of innocent people shooting in the wrong direction. Maybe Ron Paul should put on a turdan and go join his friends in Pakistan.

Quaestor said...

Robert Cook wrote:
Evidently not.

I'd say nice come back, Cook, if I though you were a preschooler.

Robert Cook said...

Nope, I'm not a partisan of Ron Paul. While on some issues he is eminently more sane than most of his peers, on others...he is not.

I didn't say AQ were not dangerous, but they are in no way an existential threat. WE have killed more people and caused more destruction worldwide than they, and our government, our military/industrial/financial complex--unchecked--is far more a danger to us than AQ.

Quaestor said...

Pragmatist wrote:
Why is the Right so soft on terrorism all of a sudden?

Barking up the wrong tree seems to be characteristic of your comments here not matter what the topic. Not very pragmatic of you, Pragmatist.

Fred4Pres said...

Robert, don't you have a protest to get to? Perhaps you are logging in on your iPhone. What city did you pick to show up at?

Robert Cook said...

"He was also a terrorist and a person who was on the run and trying to kill Americans."

Proof, please?

Just saying something is so--no matter how repeatedly--doesn't make it so or prove it to be so. And if it were so, it doesn't remove from Alawki the due process guarantees to which he was entitled as a citizen.

Quaestor said...

Robert Cook wrote:
I didn't say AQ were not dangerous, but they are in no way an existential threat.

Their threat was very existential to those in the WTS, the Pentagon and the passengers about the three hijacked airliners.

Quaestor said...

correction: aboard the three hijacked airliners.

Robert Cook said...

"You subscribe to the ridiculous theory that the country is run by some shadowy elite plutocracy...."

Oh, they're hardly shadowy. They sit on the NYSE and in the boardrooms and executive suites of the banks and financial and corporate institutions, and they are prominent, "respected" citizens.

Robert Cook said...

"Their threat was very existential to those in the WTS, the Pentagon and the passengers about the three hijacked airliners."

Of course. But not to the nation as a whole. AQ is in no way capable--and never was--of repeating that feat with any frequency, and probably not at all.

Quaestor said...

Of course. But not to the nation as a whole. AQ is in no way capable--and never was--of repeating that feat with any frequency, and probably not at all.

Impossible to demonstrate. Luckily people like you are not responsible for our defense.

Maguro said...

Killing him does not change him from criminal to combatant. And there is a difference between killing known terrorists and imprisoning and torturing people who are suspected terrorists and are not given a day in court.

Hilarious. So al-Alkawi was a "known terrorist" so it's OK to off him without a trial, but KSM was just a "suspected terrorist" who should have had his day in court.

And you make this distinction how, exactly?

Do elaborate. I hope you've got something other that "Obama is awesome" to fall back on.

Cedarford said...

KenK said...
Okay Drill Sgt. I understand. But the second part wouldn't be an automatic no-appeal death sentence. I am just very leery of having some lawyer in the pay of the WH/pres saying "okay go ahead and kill this guy here's a memo". Where is the check or balance on this?

------------------
1. CONGRESSIONAL OVERSIGHT!
2. The Lincoln and FDR Administrations prety well put to bed the idea that US Citizens on the enemy side were somehow sacrosanct from other than by lawyers dealing with them in civilian courts with full due process.
People following Lincoln's orders in the Civil War killed 280,000 US citizens without trial and destroyed vast amounts of their property w/o "due process".
3. Complete vindication for the legal views of John Yoo. Even mainstream democrat legal authorities have concluded that liberals, the progressive Jews of the ACLU, and EuroLeft are wrong.

Kirk Parker said...

Cookie,

My point is that enemy personnel that are engaged on foreign battlefields have never been addressed through US courts, regardless of where they fit in the command structure.

And fyi, "never" is quite a long time. I think the onus is on you to explain why we should start now.

And just to clarify: Rommel was injured when directly attacked by Allied forces during Normandy; Yamamoto's flight was specifically targetted because of intelligence information. Why Al-Alwaki needs to be treated differently is for you to prove.

And note, we already agree that if he were in the US, we wouldn't send the military after him (unless the military were already directly engaged on US soil as the result of a foreign invasion), and we already disagree that merely being a US citizen is enough to protect him on a foreign battlefield, so if you have nothing more to add then let's just disagree and go our separate ways on this matter.

wv: caphs -- where veal comes from.

Cedarford said...

KenK said...
Congress could change rule #43 to permit trials in absentia. If Alwaki wants to contest the charges let him show up and do so. And let the feds, CIA or who ever show up and show their evidence in a court before a judge. I am not a lawyer but I do believe that congress can and should revisit a lot of this stuff to make it more applicable to the day and age we live in now

====================
Criminal Trials in absentia are ruled unconstitutional by SCOTUS, and generally worldwide. It, of course, would be a lot easier for the state to mount a prosecution without the defendent present, with just a public defender to say what he presumed would be "the defendents side" and then work out a plea bargain with prosecutors.

It would take all the hassles out of having to go out and arrest someone that didn't turn themselves in for any indictment made public. The trial, or more likely plea bargain would be a one-day thing. And if you bagged the perp later - off they go, no trial, to serve their sentence or await execution..

No more viability to a "fugitive from justice" phrase. "The State", cops, DAs - would all love it.

It also illustrates the peril the Left would put us in by insisting that there is no such thing as war - only crime and war is resolved through a criminal justice process that would have things like trials in absentia for all criminals made legitimate..And transform soldiers and F-16 pilots into "law enforcement personnel".

I think we would all like to have 2 systems - one for people not at war with us, and one system to defeat the enemy. Attempts to claim it is all one big civilian justice system imperils the liberties of non-enemy.

Cedarford said...

Robert Cook said...
"Al-Awaki, however, as an American citizen was also a traitor as well as an officer in an enemy armed force...."

Proof, please? Has evidence of that been presented at trial? Has a judge or jury found that so on the evidence?

==================
Your stupid comeback could also apply to Admiral Yamamoto.

1. What proof did we have that he was the guy in charge of planning the Pearl Harbor attack or dozens of other attacks in the Pacific, other than the word of certain US government officials?
2. Was evidence of Yamamoto's deeds ever presented at a civilian trial before his "extrajudicial murder"?
3. What civilian judge and jury found so on the evidence? What did Mr. Yamamotos appointed attorney, paid 70,000 dollars or so by US taxpayers to represent the Admiral..have to say in his defense?? Why did Yamamoto not respond to the arrest warrant, and why were law enforcement heroes not dispatched to Rabaul to arrest him??

Crimso said...

"Jeezus! Hasn't anyone around here read 1984?"

I read it when I was quite young. I'd ask The Falling Man if he read it, but he's unavailable for comment. I'd bet he'd say al Qaeda was an existential threat. I suppose it's a matter of perspective, his being watching the upper floors of the WTC recede into the sky.

I will say (as I have in the past), that your consistency in the positions you hold is refreshing, even when I consider those positions wrong.

Crimso said...

"At least he did not kill 4000+ looking for Osama in the wrong place."

Are you referring to Afghanistan? Because if this is a refernce to Iraq, please provide a citation indicating that was the purpose of the war there.

Crimso said...

Robert Cook:

What is your stance on the killing of other Americans by the Federal government from 1861-1865?

I've had this discussion numerous times with people of all sorts of political views. It is a stickier wicket than most people first realize. They tend to take the viewpoint that practicing slavery essentially caused the people of the South to forfeit their due process rights.

(I am a native Southerner, by the distance of a couple of miles, who thinks the South was wrong)

Kirk Parker said...

Oh, crap! I agree with C4. Well, at least it's to disagree with Mr. Cook.

Quaestor said...

Cedarford: Are you disputing me or Robert Cook?

Joe Schmoe said...

America's Politico said:
GOP cannot win TX (you heard it here first), MA (same), etc.

Way to go out on a limb and say the GOP can't win MA. One of the bluest of blue states, MA hasn't gone GOP for prez since Reagan. And before him it was all D-D-D-D.

What's your next 'heard it here first' prediction, that winter will follow fall?

Fred4Pres said...

"You subscribe to the ridiculous theory that the country is run by some shadowy elite plutocracy...."

Oh, they're hardly shadowy. They sit on the NYSE and in the boardrooms and executive suites of the banks and financial and corporate institutions, and they are prominent, "respected" citizens.




Actually "Robert," you are being monitored by those people you fear. We know all about you. Yes, I am one of them.

ken in sc said...

Saying that AQ is not an existential threat, is like saying that bears, wolves and mountain lions are no threat to humans. It merely means they can't kill enough of us to affect our population density. If AQ is allowed to flourish unopposed, they may attract more of their co-religionists, and truly become an existential threat.