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A confidential Justice Department memo concludes that the U.S. government can order the killing of American citizens if they are believed to be “senior operational leaders” of al-Qaida or “an associated force” — even if there is no intelligence indicating they are engaged in an active plot to attack the U.S.
The 16-page memo, a copy of which was obtained by NBC News, provides new details about the legal reasoning behind one of the Obama administration’s most secretive and controversial polices: its dramatically increased use of drone strikes against al-Qaida suspects abroad, including those aimed at American citizens, such as the September 2011 strike in Yemen that killed alleged al-Qaida operatives Anwar al-Awlaki and Samir Khan. Both were U.S. citizens who had never been indicted by the U.S. government nor charged with any crimes.
Meanwhile, Mika @ “MORNING JOE” admits that the drone attack policy would NOT be tolerated by the Left if George W. Bush was using it:
Unusual candor from Mika Brzezinski and Harold Ford, Jr. on the double standard that exists for Republicans and Democrats. Discussing on today’s Morning Joe the Obama administration memo that has been uncovered authorizing the use of drone strikes to kill U.S. citizens abroad, Mika admitted that there would have been a “huge controversy” if such a memo had surfaced during the Bush administration. Ford said that “Democrats have to think now about how they conducted themselves and the questions they raised about Bush administration tactics.” Joe Scarborough flatly declared that had the policy come to light under Bush, it would have been “stopped” by the ensuing outcry. View the video after the jump.
Talk about the Constitutional question of the day!
It has been a legal question, a quagmire, from the moment that his name was added to the CIA list….. the first time an American was a target for death by his own country. OK, albeit a country that he HATED, that he was intenet to commit jihad, that he successfully rallied support from within the US to commit acts of terrorism within the borders of the US.
Yet, Anwar Al-Awlaki was an American citizen. Born in New Mexico to Yemini parents, he was educated here as well. The 5th Amendment guarantees us due process under the law. Placing national security above all else, the acts that Al-Awlaki is suspected to be a part of were treasonous, but he did not receive a trial in our courts; he was not found guilty by a jury of his peers; he wasn’t even tried in abstentia!
So I ask, as we strive to retain every shred of the preciousness of the liberties afforded us by the US Constitution, do the ends justify the means in the Al-Awlaki matter by not providing him his constitutional due process rights?
I will expect that our frequent commentor, Historian Dude, will state that Senator Marco Rubio meets the Constitutional eligibility requirements to serve this great Nation as a Vice President , and ultimately, as the Nation’s first President of Hispanic heritage. After all, the Historian Dude has argued that Barack Obama, born in Hawaii to a British subject, and thus having dual-citizenship, is entitled to be POTUS.
But from American Thinker, the Rubio eligibility is a bit muddied:
Marco Rubio is on most short lists for the Republican vice presidential nomination. The principal objection many conservatives have is whether Rubio is constitutionally eligible. How should we view this issue? At the outset, we need to dispose of the idea that the Constitution contemplates political parties nominating candidates to run for president or vice president. It does not.
In a discussion with the smarter part of the JAMES family, despite our support of Sen. Rubio, it was argued that though he was born here, his parents were not yet citizens (same applies to Gov. Jindal), and thus Rubio is not eligible to be President based on prior interpretations, and the application of Vittal’s Law of Nations. As a underscoring point to this, it was stated to JAMES that the Muslim cleric, Anwar al-Awlaki, was born here in the United States to Yemeni parents attending school here. Do we want to say that he is eligible to be the POTUS?
So, as we clarify the Constitution for a balanced-budget amendment, and put the election of the Senators back into the hands of the State, should we also clarify the exact wording needed to fulfill the intent of our forefathers in prescribing that the POTUS be a natural-born citizen of this great country?