NBC News’s investigative correspondent, Michael Isikoff, reported on a chilling story of governmental overreach. Isikoff reported on a confidential Justice Department memo that authorizes the US government to assassinate American citizens located outside of the United States. Should the government conclude that such individuals are “senior operational leaders” of known terrorist organizations, they have the legal authority to assassinate such individuals even without evidence of imminent threat to the United States.
The shocking Justice Department memo is likely created to be cover for future legal actions that may be taken against Americans who authorize this ultimate of sanctions. In September 2011 a US drone strike in Yemen killed American citizens Anwar al-Awlaki and Samir Khan who were supposedly involved with Al Qaeda.
Deputy legal director of the ACLU, Jameel Jaffer, rightfully said of the Administration’s plan:
“This is a chilling document. Basically, it argues that the government has the right to carry out the extrajudicial killing of an American citizen. … It recognizes some limits on the authority it sets out, but the limits are elastic and vaguely defined, and it’s easy to see how they could be manipulated.”
It is remarkable how far we have come in four years. Shortly after his first election Barack Obama and his Atty. Gen. Eric Holder threaten criminal action against government employees involved in waterboarding suspected terrorists during the Bush administration. Since then the President has used assassinations without due process on the same type of individuals and creates a legal memo for justification. Where is the moral outrage from the Left?
President Obama is indeed a uniter. Who else could have gotten this Blogger and the ACLU on the same page on an important issue!