The fact that we are asking ourselves this question is disturbing enough. Here we stand at the dawn of the twenty-first century and the country is on the brink of descending into to tyranny. What else would you call it if the military or police were called on to use such extreme measures?
Rand Paul’s Filibuster
On Wednesday (March 6, 2013), Sen. Rand Paul, R-Kentucky, filibustered the nomination of John Brennan to head the Central Intelligence Agency for 13 hours. It was his way of protesting the Justice Department’s refusal to say definitively whether or not it believes the Obama administration has the right to use drones to kill American citizens on American soil. Sen. Paul mercifully ended his rambling, though, without receiving a response from the Justice Dept.
Attorney General Eric Holder’s Response
However, the Attorney General did respond to Sen. Paul’s concerns later on , but the administration’s initial silence on the matter was deafening, causing some to believe that the administration was at least entertaining the idea.
Last September, President Obama gave the go-ahead for the drone strike that killed American born, and Al-Qaida leader, Anwar Al-Awlaki. Al-Awlaki was an outspoken critic of America and had even advocated the killing of innocent Americans, according to an article on Foxnews.com.
Although President Obama had hailed the killing of Al-Awlaki as a significant blow to Al-Qaida’s operations, legal scholars questioned the legality of his actions: “…Placing someone on a kill list for months or years seems fundamentally inconsistent with the legal definition of ‘imminent,’ and so there’s really no reason why a judicial role can’t happen here,” Ben Wizner of the ACLU said.
One can only imagine the uproar that would’ve ensued had such an attack occurred on American soil.
What Was Not Said
At any rate, Attorney General’s response was vague to say the least. It did address the question of whether or not the administration had the right to use drones to kill Americans not engaged in combat, but it left open the possibility of using such measures against Americans who did engaged in combat activities.
Thecaucus.blogs.nytimes.com: Rand Paul Leads Filibuster of Brennan Nomination
Therightscoop.com: Holder finally responds to Paul’s question – and Paul responds
Foxnews.com: Two U.S.-Born Terrorists Killed in CIA-Led Drone Strike
Huffingtonpost.com: Al-Awlaki Killing In Yemen Raises Constitutional Questions