Obama authorizes assassination of US citizen

it5five

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May 31, 2006
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http://www.salon.com/news/opinion/glenn_greenwald/2010/04/07/assassinations

Even Bush didn't have this little regard for the US court system. This is an appalling turn for the Obama administration, which appears to care little about restoring our privacy rights taken away under the Bush administration.

Here are some quotes from the linked article:

When Obama was seeking the Democratic nomination, the Constitutional Law Scholar answered a questionnaire about executive power distributed by The Boston Globe's Charlie Savage, and this was one of his answers:

5. Does the Constitution permit a president to detain US citizens without charges as unlawful enemy combatants?

[Obama]: No. I reject the Bush Administration's claim that the President has plenary authority under the Constitution to detain U.S. citizens without charges as unlawful enemy combatants.

So back then, Obama said the President lacks the power merely to detain U.S. citizens without charges. Now, as President, he claims the power to assassinate them without charges. Could even his hardest-core loyalists try to reconcile that with a straight face? As Spencer Ackerman documents today, not even John Yoo claimed that the President possessed the power Obama is claiming here.
Just to get a sense for how extreme this behavior is, consider -- as the NYT reported -- that not even George Bush targeted American citizens for this type of extra-judicial killing (though a 2002 drone attack in Yemen did result in the death of an American citizen). Even more strikingly, Antonin Scalia, in the 2004 case of Hamdi v. Rumsfeld, wrote an Opinion (joined by Justice Stevens) arguing that it was unconstitutional for the U.S. Government merely to imprison (let alone kill) American citizens as "enemy combatants"; instead, they argued, the Constitution required that Americans be charged with crimes (such as treason) and be given a trial before being punished. The full Hamdi Court held that at least some due process was required before Americans could be imprisoned as "enemy combatants." Yet now, Barack Obama is claiming the right not merely to imprison, but to assassinate far from any battlefield, American citizens with no due process of any kind.
 

Ttownbeast

macrumors 65816
May 10, 2009
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Politics has a short term memory defect don't it? I heard the same stories about Bush, Clinton, Sr., Reagan--here's your tinfoil hat.
 

184550

Guest
May 8, 2008
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I have largely been impressed with Obamas foreign policy, particuarly with regard to Pakistan. I am glad he is doing what is needed to hunt down terrorists around the world.
 

dinaluvsApple

macrumors regular
Oct 14, 2008
220
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Toronto, Ontario, Canada
How a right wing loon interprets obama

1.obama has a hit list of terrorists he wants dead!

"omg look at obama, with no disregard for our laws or legal procedures just going after anybody against him, he must be stopped@!@!!"


2. obama wants to capture and hold trials for all terrorists and suspects against the US.

"omg look at obama, hes sympathizing with these terrorists!!, how dare he waste our tax money giving this MUZZLIMS trials, food and TVS!!!
Somebody stop him
!@!@!@!@!@
 

NT1440

macrumors G5
May 18, 2008
12,141
13,986
I have largely been impressed with Obamas foreign policy, particuarly with regard to Pakistan. I am glad he is doing what is needed to hunt down terrorists around the world.
I'm honestly glad you are at least consistent. I was fully expecting some sort of outcry, but you've held solid onto your views. While I disagree (to some extent) I'm glad that you've shown that you guys aren't all anti Obama no matter what.

Thanks :)
 

bobertoq

macrumors 6502a
Feb 29, 2008
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I have largely been impressed with Obamas foreign policy, particuarly with regard to Pakistan. I am glad he is doing what is needed to hunt down terrorists around the world.
You're being sarcastic, right? I really hope so...

I was kind of confused by the post, too, but allowing the government to assassinate people? That's really pushing it... Especially its own citizens...
Benjamin Franklin said:
Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.
 

184550

Guest
May 8, 2008
1,978
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You're being sarcastic, right? I really hope so...

I was kind of confused by the post, too, but allowing the government to assassinate people? That's really pushing it... Especially its own citizens...
God, you people love that ***** Franklin quote don't you?

You are aware then that the 'liberty' that he refers to in the quote, taken from the late 1700s, was in reference to the question of slavery in the US?

EDIT:

You may also find this interesting. Here's another bit. And another.
 

bobertoq

macrumors 6502a
Feb 29, 2008
599
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God, you people love that ***** Franklin quote don't you?

You are aware then that the 'liberty' that he refers to in the quote, taken from the late 1700s, was in reference to the question of slavery in the US?
And your point? I'm not entirely sure how slavery provides security, but what he was referring to is irrelevant. What he said was right, and I would consider living and privacy "essential liberties."
 

184550

Guest
May 8, 2008
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And your point? I'm not entirely sure how slavery provides security, but what he was referring to is irrelevant. What he said was right, and I would consider living and privacy "essential liberties."
My point is that if you look at the orignal historic basis for that quote, it has zero connection to the topic you're applying it to. Therefore, how can you be sure what Franklin's opinion would be this topic?

Should have paid attention in history...
 

NT1440

macrumors G5
May 18, 2008
12,141
13,986
My point is that if you look at the orignal historic basis for that quote, it has zero connection to the topic you're applying it to. Therefore, how can you be sure what Franklin's opinion would be this topic?

Should have paid attention in history...
Lol how many quotes are misused by the right?

Just sayin.
 

184550

Guest
May 8, 2008
1,978
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Lol how many quotes are misused by the right?

Just sayin.
I wouldn't know considering that I usually line up with Democrats on social issues and Republicans on foreign policy.

Regardless of that, show me a popular quote that 'the right' misuses and I'll be glad to find out its true basis.
 

bobertoq

macrumors 6502a
Feb 29, 2008
599
0
My point is that if you look at the orignal historic basis for that quote, it has zero connection to the topic you're applying it to. Therefore, how can you be sure what Franklin's opinion would be this topic?

Should have paid attention in history...
And my point was that, regardless of what Benjamin Franklin would think, in my opinion, essential liberties are always more important than security. Giving the government this much power is dangerous and another step towards authoritarianism.
 

No1451

macrumors 6502
Oct 20, 2008
474
0
Ottawa, ON
I don't get it, I read that article and I cannot anywhere find a place where they mention names, instead we get "an american official".

Can someone explain to me what he has said/done that supports this article?
 

Ttownbeast

macrumors 65816
May 10, 2009
1,135
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God, you people love that ***** Franklin quote don't you?

You are aware then that the 'liberty' that he refers to in the quote, taken from the late 1700s, was in reference to the question of slavery in the US?

EDIT:

You may also find this interesting. Here's another bit. And another.
The problem with people and the abuse of that Franklin quote is the belief that it only applies to their own group.
 

it5five

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Original poster
May 31, 2006
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I may not have been very clear in my first post, or you may not have read the article I linked to, but here's my attempt at a clarification and some corrections.

1. I'm not a right wing loon. I've been called one more than once in this thread, which is hilarious and dead wrong, since I'm one of the most "left" members on this board. Since when are Socialists "right wing loons"?

2. This isn't a "conspiracy" of any sort. It isn't vague ramblings saying that Obama can kill whoever he wants. Here is a Washington Post article defining this program:

After the Sept. 11 attacks, Bush gave the CIA, and later the military, authority to kill U.S. citizens abroad if strong evidence existed that an American was involved in organizing or carrying out terrorist actions against the United States or U.S. interests, military and intelligence officials said. The evidence has to meet a certain, defined threshold. The person, for instance, has to pose "a continuing and imminent threat to U.S. persons and interests," said one former intelligence official.

The Obama administration has adopted the same stance. If a U.S. citizen joins al-Qaeda, "it doesn't really change anything from the standpoint of whether we can target them," a senior administration official said. "They are then part of the enemy."

Both the CIA and the JSOC maintain lists of individuals, called "High Value Targets" and "High Value Individuals," whom they seek to kill or capture. The JSOC list includes three Americans, including Aulaqi, whose name was added late last year. As of several months ago, the CIA list included three U.S. citizens, and an intelligence official said that Aulaqi's name has now been added.
3. There was another Salon article about this, written by the same person, a few months ago. Here is that article.

I know for a fact that some of you in this thread who don't see this as a big deal or who are calling me a right wing conspiracy theorist were livid with G.W. Bush's practice of detaining "enemy combatants" without trial for years.

I'd like to say something very important again: Any criticism of Obama does not make the person being critical a right wing loon. The right pulled the same thing with Bush; denouncing any and all critics of the president and defending his every move and action. If I see Obama doing something I think is reprehensible, like authorizing the CIA or military to kill a U.S. citizen abroad, away from the "battlefield" (this means at home, at the store, wherever) without any trial or evidence put forth, I'm sure as hell going to criticize him.

Now, does anyone have any legitimate complaints with my thread, or are you going to continue to mock me and paint me as a right wing conspiracy theorist?
 

leekohler

macrumors G5
Dec 22, 2004
14,162
19
Chicago, Illinois
I may not have been very clear in my first post, or you may not have read the article I linked to, but here's my attempt at a clarification and some corrections.

1. I'm not a right wing loon. I've been called one more than once in this thread, which is hilarious and dead wrong, since I'm one of the most "left" members on this board. Since when are Socialists "right wing loons"?

2. This isn't a "conspiracy" of any sort. It isn't vague ramblings saying that Obama can kill whoever he wants. Here is a Washington Post article defining this program:



3. There was another Salon article about this, written by the same person, a few months ago. Here is that article.

I know for a fact that some of you in this thread who don't see this as a big deal or who are calling me a right wing conspiracy theorist were livid with G.W. Bush's practice of detaining "enemy combatants" without trial for years.

I'd like to say something very important again: Any criticism of Obama does not make the person being critical a right wing loon. The right pulled the same thing with Bush; denouncing any and all critics of the president and defending his every move and action. If I see Obama doing something I think is reprehensible, like authorizing the CIA or military to kill a U.S. citizen abroad, away from the "battlefield" (this means at home, at the store, wherever) without any trial or evidence put forth, I'm sure as hell going to criticize him.

Now, does anyone have any legitimate complaints with my thread, or are you going to continue to mock me and paint me as a right wing conspiracy theorist?
I wasn't mocking you- your OP was very strange and didn't seem to match up with the thread title. Now that it's more clear, I understand what you're saying.

And no- Obama absolutely should not be doing this, but I am not surprised. Look how happy it made Nathanmuir. This is political strategy if I've ever seen it, disgusting as it is.
 

it5five

macrumors 65816
Original poster
May 31, 2006
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I didn't think you were mocking me, just confused about my first post (which I know I should have put more information in). I was referring to a few people who posted after you did.
 

imac/cheese

macrumors 6502a
Jun 7, 2007
555
1
1. I'm not a right wing loon. I've been called one more than once in this thread, which is hilarious and dead wrong, since I'm one of the most "left" members on this board. Since when are Socialists "right wing loons"?
Having seen you posting here for a couple years, I really laughed out loud when I saw you being called a right-wing loon.
 

Eraserhead

macrumors G4
Nov 3, 2005
10,300
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UK
I wasn't mocking you- your OP was very strange and didn't seem to match up with the thread title. Now that it's more clear, I understand what you're saying.

And no- Obama absolutely should not be doing this, but I am not surprised. Look how happy it made Nathanmuir. This is political strategy if I've ever seen it, disgusting as it is.
This is an appalling development for the US.

FWIW Olbermann is against this:

http://www.salon.com/news/opinion/glenn_greenwald/2010/04/08/olbermann/index.html
 

Desertrat

macrumors newbie
Jul 4, 2003
2
706
Terlingua, Texas
it5Five, snark is much easier than actual thinking...

I have mixed emotions on this. If someone is known to have taken action, and it's not merely an accusation based upon suspicion by some lower-level functionary, the "review and findings" is a form of substitute for the judicial process. The National Security Council is not just some bunch of guys off the street. And, really, it's not the killing as killing which bothers me.

But I have the same old worry as about any sort of death penalty, judicial or otherwise: Did they kill the right guy?
 

it5five

macrumors 65816
Original poster
May 31, 2006
1,220
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Must be an Americanism. I've known the word for a long time. Snark is a snide remark, and the word is a combination of both. Snide remark.
 

mkrishnan

Moderator emeritus
Jan 9, 2004
29,641
12
Grand Rapids, MI, USA
I wasn't mocking you- your OP was very strange and didn't seem to match up with the thread title. Now that it's more clear, I understand what you're saying.

And no- Obama absolutely should not be doing this, but I am not surprised. Look how happy it made Nathanmuir. This is political strategy if I've ever seen it, disgusting as it is.
[side rant]This is the problem with the rise of blogging as being perceived as a replacement to traditional journalism. There actually is value to the editing process and space limitations imposed by magazines and newspaper articles. This blog is almost completely unreadable -- sections have to be read over and over again to understand what connection between events and theories the author is proposing, or how any one paragraph relates to any of the other paragraphs[/side rant]

That being said, no, I don't care for it either. OTOH, I've consistently said that I think the broad area of restoring civil liberties is the one area in which I have been consistently dissatisfied with President Obama and his administration's work. I personally consider the entire "non-enemy combatant" business not only a load of malarkey but a serious violation of our basic American values. I want a return to the ideas that, if someone committed a crime, they are duly charged and duly processed, that they have an appropriate right to face their accusers, and that the public has a right to oversee the judicial process to verify that American values of civil liberty and fairness are being upheld by it.