The United States says it has killed American-born Anwar al-Awlaki and another man, Samir Kahn, in Yemen. Both were American citizens.
These killings were not on any battlefield. In a face-to-face battle, the government clearly does not have to check IDs before shooting those on attack. But painstakingly seeking out known citizens for killing via remote control would not be hampered by some type of basic due process hearing by outside the executive branch.
The standards applied the Obama Administration for determining whether this action was justified and legal have not been provided to the public, let alone reviewed by any court. Nor have any facts regarding the actions of these two men been determined by any court. Secret laws and secret memos should not be part of US law. Shameful.
Just think about this for a minute. Barack Obama, like George Bush before him, has claimed the authority to order American citizens murdered based solely on the unverified, uncharged, unchecked claim that they are associated with Terrorism and pose “a continuing and imminent threat to U.S. persons and interests.” They’re entitled to no charges, no trial, no ability to contest the accusations. Amazingly, the Bush administration’s policy of merely imprisoning foreign nationals (along with a couple of American citizens) without charges — based solely on the President’s claim that they were Terrorists — produced intense controversy for years. That, one will recall, was a grave assault on the Constitution. Shouldn’t Obama’s policy of ordering American citizens assassinated without any due process or checks of any kind — not imprisoned, but killed — produce at least as much controversy?
- New reality: US assassinates it own citizens with no due process (boingboing.net)
- The Due-Process-Free Assassination of US Citizens is Now Reality (jhaines6.wordpress.com)
- American Citizen Anwar al-Awlaki Assassinated in Yemen (news.firedoglake.com)
- Ron Paul Condemns Obama Admin For ‘Assassinating’ U.S. Born Anwar al-Awlaki (mediaite.com)