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Thread: Justice Department memo reveals legal case for drone strikes on Americans

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    Regular Member OC for ME's Avatar
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    Justice Department memo reveals legal case for drone strikes on Americans

    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.

    Further on in the article.

    Brennan was the first administration official to publicly acknowledge drone strikes in a speech last year, calling them “consistent with the inherent right of self-defense.” In a separate talk at the Northwestern University Law School in March, Attorney General Eric Holder specifically endorsed the constitutionality of targeted killings of Americans, saying they could be justified if government officials determine the target poses “an imminent threat of violent attack.”

    http://openchannel.nbcnews.com/_news...americans?lite
    Not good news.
    "I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it." - Thomas Jefferson.

    "Better that ten guilty persons escape, than that one innocent suffer" - English jurist William Blackstone.
    It is AFAIK original to me. Compromise is failure on the installment plan, particularly when dealing with so intractable an opponent as ignorance. - Nightmare

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    Regular Member crazydude6030's Avatar
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    Re: Justice Department memo reveals legal case for drone strikes on Americans

    That's bs. Isn't due process supposed to prevent this?

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    Justice Department memo reveals legal case for drone strikes on Americans

    Quote Originally Posted by crazydude6030 View Post
    That's bs. Isn't due process supposed to prevent this?

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    Saw this last night. Blatently illegal, IMO.

    "It's just the AQ members we want to shoot without trial."

    "Well, it is just those who have abetted AQ members."

    "Well, it is just those who we deem as domestic terrorists."

    "Well, it is just those who we deem dangerous."

    "We are only coming for people like YOU MF'er! Bow down before the almighty US gov."
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    Regular Member crazydude6030's Avatar
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    Re: Justice Department memo reveals legal case for drone strikes on Americans

    Where is the outrage? Why are talk show host all over not jumping on this? Where are all the protesters?

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    This is not a law enforcement issue. This is a national defense issue. (Some folks just don't get the distinction.)

    Last I checked, we are at war with al Qaeda (among others). Our military does not need an overt act, a warrant, or the al Qaeda "senior operational leaders" to be outside America to wage that war on them.

    That being said, I am concerned. With that vast power in the hand of the presidency, it must be wielded carefully and honestly. I don't think, with this president, we can count on that necessary power being wielded in that way. But that is not a problem of the power. As I implied, the power to wage war on those who attack us and want to destroy us, regardless of where they are, is necessary. We must be careful in whom we vest that power, as some will abuse it.

    Elections matter. They have consequences. This is just one of them.

    I pray to God that our Republic survives four more years, until we get another chance to fix it. I don't think it will. God help us.

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    Regular Member OC for ME's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by crazydude6030 View Post
    Where is the outrage? Why are talk show host all over not jumping on this? Where are all the protesters?
    Are these rhetorical questions? Do you understand that the media are predominately liberal......not gunna talk smack about their guy. Protestors (that you seem to be referring to) are leftists and thus liberal. They too will not talk smack about their dude unless it is to further their unemployed lifestyle at my expense.

    The protestors on the right (predominately conservative) are too busy earning a wage and thus too busy sustaining our economy. In other words, I have a job and I must work to pay for leftists protestors to protest.
    "I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it." - Thomas Jefferson.

    "Better that ten guilty persons escape, than that one innocent suffer" - English jurist William Blackstone.
    It is AFAIK original to me. Compromise is failure on the installment plan, particularly when dealing with so intractable an opponent as ignorance. - Nightmare

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    Quote Originally Posted by eye95 View Post
    This is not a law enforcement issue. This is a national defense issue. (Some folks just don't get the distinction.)

    Last I checked, we are at war with al Qaeda (among others). Our military does not need an overt act, a warrant, or the al Qaeda "senior operational leaders" to be outside America to wage that war on them.

    That being said, I am concerned. With that vast power in the hand of the presidency, it must be wielded carefully and honestly. I don't think, with this president, we can count on that necessary power being wielded in that way. But that is not a problem of the power. As I implied, the power to wage war on those who attack us and want to destroy us, regardless of where they are, is necessary. We must be careful in whom we vest that power, as some will abuse it.

    Elections matter. They have consequences. This is just one of them.

    I pray to God that our Republic survives four more years, until we get another chance to fix it. I don't think it will. God help us.
    It was vitally important to the DOJ (administration) to ensure that American citizens targeted by the military were targeted lawfully. Americans targeted by the federal government is more than a military exercise. I contend that both military and law enforcement purposes are at issue where the targeting of American citizens is the issue.

    The military does not act preemptively, they must be directed by their political masters. Unfortunately, the military has a very long and loose leash at this point. Perhaps a future commander in chief will shorten and tighten the leash.
    "I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it." - Thomas Jefferson.

    "Better that ten guilty persons escape, than that one innocent suffer" - English jurist William Blackstone.
    It is AFAIK original to me. Compromise is failure on the installment plan, particularly when dealing with so intractable an opponent as ignorance. - Nightmare

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    Regular Member crazydude6030's Avatar
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    Re: Justice Department memo reveals legal case for drone strikes on Americans

    Quote Originally Posted by OC for ME View Post
    Are these rhetorical questions?
    Of course they are. I wrote my reps on this today asking why they are allowing this.

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    Regular Member sudden valley gunner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eye95 View Post
    This is not a law enforcement issue. This is a national defense issue. (Some folks just don't get the distinction.)

    Last I checked, we are at war with al Qaeda (among others). Our military does not need an overt act, a warrant, or the al Qaeda "senior operational leaders" to be outside America to wage that war on them.

    That being said, I am concerned. With that vast power in the hand of the presidency, it must be wielded carefully and honestly. I don't think, with this president, we can count on that necessary power being wielded in that way. But that is not a problem of the power. As I implied, the power to wage war on those who attack us and want to destroy us, regardless of where they are, is necessary. We must be careful in whom we vest that power, as some will abuse it.

    Elections matter. They have consequences. This is just one of them.

    I pray to God that our Republic survives four more years, until we get another chance to fix it. I don't think it will. God help us.
    We are also supposedly at war with Drugs, poverty, etc......don't let the government rationalize their illegal actions.
    I am not anti Cop I am just pro Citizen.

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    Re: Justice Department memo reveals legal case for drone strikes on Americans

    Quote Originally Posted by eye95 View Post
    This is not a law enforcement issue. This is a national defense issue. (Some folks just don't get the distinction.)

    Last I checked, we are at war with al Qaeda (among others). Our military does not need an overt act, a warrant, or the al Qaeda "senior operational leaders" to be outside America to wage that war on them.

    That being said, I am concerned. With that vast power in the hand of the presidency, it must be wielded carefully and honestly. I don't think, with this president, we can count on that necessary power being wielded in that way. But that is not a problem of the power. As I implied, the power to wage war on those who attack us and want to destroy us, regardless of where they are, is necessary. We must be careful in whom we vest that power, as some will abuse it.

    Elections matter. They have consequences. This is just one of them.

    I pray to God that our Republic survives four more years, until we get another chance to fix it. I don't think it will. God help us.
    And by the logic I am reading they could just send drones to take you out.

    My issue here is there is no warrants. No due process. There is nothing keeping him in check. That concerns me

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    Regular Member motoxmann's Avatar
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    I agree with eye95's above post.

    also, due process frequently does not apply for international matters. I read an article on yahoo about this, and in their article they claim the courts have already stated they really have minimal say in the matter.
    the part that concerns me though, is how it is written, loosely stating the same concept can be applied to any American posing any imminent danger to the US from any location.

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    Justice Department memo reveals legal case for drone strikes on Americans

    Quote Originally Posted by OC for ME View Post
    It was vitally important to the DOJ (administration) to ensure that American citizens targeted by the military were targeted lawfully. Americans targeted by the federal government is more than a military exercise. I contend that both military and law enforcement purposes are at issue where the targeting of American citizens is the issue.

    The military does not act preemptively, they must be directed by their political masters. Unfortunately, the military has a very long and loose leash at this point. Perhaps a future commander in chief will shorten and tighten the leash.
    I don't want the Justice Department overseeing military operations. There is a military justice system to prosecute members who use military force illegally. For the higher level folks (the president and the secretaries), the Congress and the People are supposed to provide that check. If the president abuses his military authority illegally against non-combatant civilians, it is up to Congress to try and punish him. If they won't do that, it is up to the electorate to do something about them and the president. If that effort fails...well, the words, "When in the course of Human Events...," come to mind. (I still hope it does not come to that.)

    However, complaining about the president exercising his proper authority to target enemy combatants, wherever they are, including on US soil, or saying that the Justice Department should pass on all such targeting is ridiculous and flies in the face of the Constitution.

    If and when the president, his secretaries, or his officers illegally use that military force against civilians in the US who are not part of the defined enemy that the military is fighting, then the systems in place for punishing those actions, none of which involve civilian courts or the DOJ, should be used.


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    Justice Department memo reveals legal case for drone strikes on Americans

    Quote Originally Posted by motoxmann View Post
    I agree with eye95's above post.

    also, due process frequently does not apply for international matters. I read an article on yahoo about this, and in their article they claim the courts have already stated they really have minimal say in the matter.
    the part that concerns me though, is how it is written, loosely stating the same concept can be applied to any American posing any imminent danger to the US from any location.
    Also, due process does not apply to military actions. It applies to law enforcement and judicial actions.


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    Re: Justice Department memo reveals legal case for drone strikes on Americans

    Quote Originally Posted by crazydude6030 View Post
    Of course they are. I wrote my reps on this today asking why they are allowing this.
    Would you mind posting what your rep said, and of when permission, would you let me send it to my rep/newspaper, just to see the reaction?

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    Justice Department memo reveals legal case for drone strikes on Americans

    Quote Originally Posted by crazydude6030 View Post
    And by the logic I am reading they could just send drones to take you out.

    My issue here is there is no warrants. No due process. There is nothing keeping him in check. That concerns me

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    Then you have not followed my logic. I am not at war with the US. Al Qaeda is. If the president were to target me, or any other such target, then the correct process is impeachment by Congress, conviction, removal from office, and punishment.

    My point, which seems to have eluded your logical abilities, is that there is a distinction between military and law enforcement matters. Striking against the enemy, wherever he is, is of no concern to the courts or to the Justice Department. It is a military decision. There are systems in place to handle the criminal misuse of that authority.

    It is not criminal to militarily target enemy combatants, even on US soil. If they use drones to kill al Qaeda leaders, they are simply doing the job given them. Criminally targeting others is another matter, but still not one for the DOJ or for the courts.


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    Re: Justice Department memo reveals legal case for drone strikes on Americans

    Quote Originally Posted by eye95 View Post
    Then you have not followed my logic.
    I wasn't talking about your logic cheif, I was talking about the memo. Sorry for the confusion
    Last edited by crazydude6030; 02-05-2013 at 12:53 PM.

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    Re: Justice Department memo reveals legal case for drone strikes on Americans

    Quote Originally Posted by mpguy View Post
    Would you mind posting what your rep said, and of when permission, would you let me send it to my rep/newspaper, just to see the reaction?

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    They always take a few weeks to respond to me. Heck I am still getting responses from the 2nd round of emails on control and I have sent at least 5-6 out so far

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    Justice Department memo reveals legal case for drone strikes on Americans

    Quote Originally Posted by crazydude6030 View Post
    I wasn't talking about your logic cheif, I was talking about the memo. Sorry for the confusion
    The fault for the confusion is partly mine. Sorry 'bout that, Chief.


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    Regular Member OC for ME's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by eye95 View Post
    I don't want the Justice Department overseeing military operations. There is a military justice system to prosecute members who use military force illegally. For the higher level folks (the president and the secretaries), the Congress and the People are supposed to provide that check. If the president abuses his military authority illegally against non-combatant civilians, it is up to Congress to try and punish him. If they won't do that, it is up to the electorate to do something about them and the president. If that effort fails...well, the words, "When in the course of Human Events...," come to mind. (I still hope it does not come to that.)

    However, complaining about the president exercising his proper authority to target enemy combatants, wherever they are, including on US soil, or saying that the Justice Department should pass on all such targeting is ridiculous and flies in the face of the Constitution.

    If and when the president, his secretaries, or his officers illegally use that military force against civilians in the US who are not part of the defined enemy that the military is fighting, then the systems in place for punishing those actions, none of which involve civilian courts or the DOJ, should be used.


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    The military is being used to further DOJ ends at the direction of the CinC. This is fact.

    The DOJ is directing (indirectly) military operations and military personnel. The DOJ and the DOD are joined at the hip in the targeting of American citizens.

    http://abcnews.go.com/International/...erica-18390970

    The last NDAA seemed to clearly define "enemy combatant" but I remain unconvinced that a unambiguous definition is defined in the law. I fear that our right to due process is based more on geography rather than on constitutional principles. There is no constitutional justification, in my view, to "target" any American citizen and use the armed forces to engage that American citizen.
    "I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it." - Thomas Jefferson.

    "Better that ten guilty persons escape, than that one innocent suffer" - English jurist William Blackstone.
    It is AFAIK original to me. Compromise is failure on the installment plan, particularly when dealing with so intractable an opponent as ignorance. - Nightmare

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    Quote Originally Posted by OC for ME View Post
    Not good news.
    Oh, its great news. This is us doing it to ourselves by way of our representative government. If any more American citizens are killed by drone strikes, then the deceased actually committed suicide because we are the government and the government is us. It all makes perfect sense. There is no reason to be concerned.
    I'll make you an offer: I will argue and fight for all of your rights, if you will do the same for me. That is the only way freedom can work. We have to respect all rights, all the time--and strive to win the rights of the other guy as much as for ourselves.

    If I am equal to another, how can I legitimately govern him without his express individual consent?

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    Agreed. 100%

    People used the same logic in supporting the patriot act because it was for our "own safety" and the government promised they would only use it on people like Al-Qaeda and not the American people, yet what has the government been doing with it. Both of these certainly violate the constitution plain and simple. Not one single thing people can say changes this fact.
    Last edited by zack991; 02-06-2013 at 06:39 AM.
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    Because it may be abused does not make this ruling unconstitutional. It would only be unconstitutional if its use as stated violates the Constitution. Attacking those with whom we are at war, even on US soil, is not unconstitutional, so there is nothing wrong with the DOJ saying that military drones can be used to target al Qaeda leadership in America.

    Now, if the military were to use this ruling to go after Americans whom they knew were NOT al Qaeda, then they would be running afoul of the Constitution and of this ruling! They would be subject to both military justice and, having committed a crime, civilian justice.

    Because someone might abuse a law (or a ruling) in an unconstitutional way is a silly reason to be against the law (or ruling) that is not, on its face, unconstitutional.

    Believing otherwise is the logical equivalent of being against guns because they might be used criminally.

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    Hey, don't drone me bro ...

    Looks like they gave them themselves a reason to kill anyone ... do not accept those free, gov't giveaway, trips outside the US !

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    Regular Member crazydude6030's Avatar
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    Re: Justice Department memo reveals legal case for drone strikes on Americans

    Quote Originally Posted by davidmcbeth View Post
    Looks like they gave them themselves a reason to kill anyone ... do not accept those free, gov't giveaway, trips outside the US !
    Who says it has to be outside the US?

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