Video: Ron Paul condemns drone strike on Awlaki

posted at 4:56 pm on September 30, 2011 by Allahpundit

Not the only libertarian all-star troubled by this morning’s op in Yemen. Earlier on Fox, Gary Johnson confessed to mixed feelings that a U.S. citizen, degenerate though he was, had been targeted for execution without due process. Honestly, I’m conflicted too: Read the exchange between Andy McCarthy and Kevin Williamson at The Corner for sharp arguments on each side. There are two difficulties here, I think. One is the fact of Awlaki’s citizenship, the other is the nature of the combat he was engaged in. No one outside of the far left disputes that if an American joins a foreign army and points a gun at a U.S. soldier on the battlefield, the soldier’s entitled to take him down. No one disputes either that officers are legitimate targets in war, not merely the infantrymen they command. (Ask Admiral Yamamoto about that.) Awlaki was an officer in Al Qaeda’s army, tasked mainly with propaganda but increasingly given to directing would-be killers like Abdulmutallab around the global battlefield. Or so we’re told; there’s endless video out there of him denouncing America and exhorting attacks on the country, but the proof that he was planning operations — the heart of the argument for taking him out — remains within the upper reaches of America’s counterterror establishment.

That’s where his citizenship comes in. If we’re going to kill one of our own without independent review of the evidence that he is in fact fighting or commanding fighters on the other side, then we’re handing the president broaaaad power to kill Americans abroad. As Danger Room says, “[S]houldn’t Awlaki’s American citizenship count for something? If nothing else, doesn’t it oblige the government to at least disclose why it asserts it can kill an American citizen?” The irony is, I doubt the feds would have trouble convincing a judge that Awlaki’s as big a threat as they suspect: Although some experts claim his role in AQ was vastly overstated, his terror ties go all the way back to 9/11. Read Tom Joscelyn’s account of Awlaki’s relationship with three of the hijackers, then read this IntelWire summary of how he spent the past 10 years, assuming more of an operational role in the last few. (And no, contrary to what some on the left might tell you, Awlaki’s journey to jihad wasn’t a reaction to Afghanistan and Iraq. It began before that.) According to one senior U.S. official, he even took an interest in using chemical weapons against Americans. Why can’t we have a mechanism in which a judge either (a) reviews the evidence and signs off on the decision to target a suspect who’s a citizen, a la a probable cause warrant, or (b) adjudicates that the target has constructively expatriated himself by swearing allegiance to an enemy and taking up arms? The most hawkish hawks will hate that idea because it slightly limits the president’s war-making power and introduces a law-enforcement element into the war on terror, but there are worse precedents than involving judges in rare terrorism cases. Like, for instance, letting the president fire drones at anyone he wants, citizen or not, if they happen to be beyond easy reach of U.S. infantrymen.

Here’s Paul. Note the bit at the very end in which he distinguishes Awlaki from Bin Laden on grounds that no one ever said the former was a participant in 9/11. In fact, a lot of people suspect that he was; just follow the links above. Exit question: What would the war on terror have looked like without drones?

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I’m all for Ron Paul hammering Obama with “War Crimes” charges during the debates. Maybe MSNBC will have him on.

faraway on September 30, 2011 at 4:58 PM

Behold the Ghost of Palintard Future

BuckNutty on September 30, 2011 at 4:59 PM

Dear Uncle Ron,

Your campaign is officially toast. Please step aside and let the adults handle this.

Sincerely,
Me

cc: Gary Johnson

Knucklehead on September 30, 2011 at 5:00 PM

Goodbye, Ron. Whenever anyone asks me, “Why not Ron Paul?” This is why.

Matticus Finch on September 30, 2011 at 5:00 PM

The fat lady sings.

stefanite on September 30, 2011 at 5:02 PM

I’ll admit that though I am happy the S.O.B. is dead, when I first heard the news I had to pause and think about how his American citizenship complicates matters.

Did Congress declare him a traitor? Was he tried in absentia? Could/should he have been? Can the President just order a strike like this?

American citizenship does need to count for something, and though I won’t be shedding any tears over this dirtbag, now would be a good time to have this discussion.

Daemonocracy on September 30, 2011 at 5:02 PM

Exit question: What would the war on terror have looked like without drones?

A lot more Americans in body bags.

CTSherman on September 30, 2011 at 5:03 PM

All the jackwagons can’t be on the Left, I guess.

Cicero43 on September 30, 2011 at 5:03 PM

Too much power.

There needs to be some kind of judicial or military tribunal determining they are waging war on the US before we slaughter fellow US citizens with Hellfire missiles fired from unseen Predator drones in the sky. I’m a hawk, but this crosses the line

tommylotto on September 30, 2011 at 5:04 PM

American citizenship does need to count for something, and though I won’t be shedding any tears over this dirtbag, now would be a good time to have this discussion.

Daemonocracy on September 30, 2011 at 5:02 PM

Awlaki took up arms against this country. Our Commander in Chief ordered that he be killed. End of discussion.

pedestrian on September 30, 2011 at 5:05 PM

I have mixed feelings about this too but …

I believe this could be solved if there were a method whereby the US Congress could REVOKE the citizenship of any American for good reason using … say a 2/3rds majority of both houses of Congress?

This could come with a trial behind closed doors – and you could even invite the defendent to come and speak on his behalf.

Once citizenship is revoked … fire when ready.

HondaV65 on September 30, 2011 at 5:05 PM

I’m glad POTUS can pick which Americans he can kill at will.
/
Really?

crash72 on September 30, 2011 at 5:06 PM

Not the only libertarian all-star troubled by this morning’s op in Yemen. Earlier on Fox, Gary Johnson confessed to mixed feelings that a U.S. citizen, degenerate though he was, had been targeted for execution without due process. Honestly, I’m conflicted too

As am I. I lean toward supporting the administration on this one, assuming the evidence against was incontrovertible(which all indications are it is). But I’ll be very curious to see what negative reaction(if any) comes from the left on this one. I mean, if Bush had done this, they’d be calling for his head and everyone knows it.

Doughboy on September 30, 2011 at 5:06 PM

A guy who points a gun at a cop gets no due process, American citizenship or not, so there’s no need for hand-wringing over this.

stefanite on September 30, 2011 at 5:06 PM

My main problem with this whole thing is “who defines what a terrorist is so that killing him is justified?”.

The professional left has been calling the “tea party” terrorists for as long as the media was willing to put a camera in their faces.

Mord on September 30, 2011 at 5:06 PM

The rights afforded you in this country do not follow you to other countries. For example, if I go to China and stand in the town square and blast the Chinese government, when I get arrested I can’t claim I have first amendment rights because I am a US citizen.

The same should be true for terrorist. Their 4th amendment rights don’t follow them to another country or their actions in another country. Now if Awlaki conducted his terrorist business here in the US, then he should be afforded due process. Once he leaves the country, he leaves his rights behind.

ramrants on September 30, 2011 at 5:06 PM

now would be a good time to have this discussion.

Daemonocracy on September 30, 2011 at 5:02 PM

Actually, it might have been a good time BEFORE we started murdering Americans with flying robots firing missiles.

tommylotto on September 30, 2011 at 5:06 PM

Awlaki took up arms against this country. Our Commander in Chief ordered that he be killed. End of discussion.

pedestrian on September 30, 2011 at 5:05 PM

No, as an American citizen he is entitled to due process. The President can not just declare an American citizen a traitor on his own, there is the issue of due process.

Daemonocracy on September 30, 2011 at 5:07 PM

tommylotto on September 30, 2011 at 5:06 PM

Well yeah, but the deed is done.

Daemonocracy on September 30, 2011 at 5:08 PM

I agree with Paul. However, if the Congress would get off it’s arse, it could have declared these clowns traitors and stripped them of their citizenship. Then we can avoid the stain of assassinating American citizens.

rickyricardo on September 30, 2011 at 5:08 PM

No, as an American citizen he is entitled to due process. The President can not just declare an American citizen a traitor on his own, there is the issue of due process.

Daemonocracy on September 30, 2011 at 5:07 PM

stefanite got it exactly right:

stefanite on September 30, 2011 at 5:06 PM

pedestrian on September 30, 2011 at 5:09 PM

Awlaki took up arms against this country. Our Commander in Chief ordered that he be killed. End of discussion.

pedestrian on September 30, 2011 at 5:05 PM

Obama declared war on us. Are we next?

faraway on September 30, 2011 at 5:10 PM

And this guy wants to be commander-in-chief.

Give me a freaking break.

nickj116 on September 30, 2011 at 5:10 PM

Awlaki took up arms against this country. Our Commander in Chief ordered that he be killed. End of discussion.

pedestrian on September 30, 2011 at 5:05 PM

But he didn’t take up arms – and can’t be linked personally to any terrorist acts. He was a big recruiter for extremism though.

I was initially HAPPY about hearing this man was dead – because I detest this guy. But then, I started thinking – what would any American have to do to get “zapped” like Awlaki?

He may certainly supported the enemy – but is this reason enough to execute a “hit” on an American citizen without a trial? What if all he had done was write news articles that were sympathetic with Al Qaida? Would that justify the POTUS putting a contract out on him?

This is a new power for the POTUS – and I’m not opposed to him having it – but there need to be rules written down somewhere on when this kind of action is acceptable.

HondaV65 on September 30, 2011 at 5:10 PM

ramrants on September 30, 2011 at 5:06 PM

As a citizen I retain my constitutional rights which protect me from my own government wherever I go.

Daemonocracy on September 30, 2011 at 5:11 PM

Obama declared war on us. Are we next?

faraway on September 30, 2011 at 5:10 PM

Hyperbole is not a valid argument.

pedestrian on September 30, 2011 at 5:11 PM

If there were only two people to vote for and all they handled were foreign affairs, I would, without hesitation, vote for Obama over Paul.

The Notorious G.O.P on September 30, 2011 at 5:11 PM

Paul is spot on. We are not America anymore if we think it’s OK for the government to carry out extra-judicial executions of its citizens simply because it says they’re “real, real bad.”

AP are you honestly conflicted about this?

As you say, “DUDE.”

CTD on September 30, 2011 at 5:12 PM

The guy tried to get other Americans killed. He repeatedly stated his intent to do Jihad.

There is no doubt as to his guilt. There is no doubt in his death.

Ron Paul should really start to consider moving into Mexico before he gets fenced in.

William Amos on September 30, 2011 at 5:13 PM

stefanite got it exactly right:

stefanite on September 30, 2011 at 5:06 PM

pedestrian on September 30, 2011 at 5:09 PM

No he did not get it right, Awlaki was executed by either the CIA or the military. There was no attempt to arrest him.

Daemonocracy on September 30, 2011 at 5:13 PM

No, as an American citizen he is entitled to due process. The President can not just declare an American citizen a traitor on his own, there is the issue of due process.

Daemonocracy on September 30, 2011 at 5:07 PM

It really isn’t that hard to understand. Yes, I’m a ‘Paul-nut’ and none of us are arguing whether or not the man was evil and shouldn’t meet his maker sooner rather than later.

But you simply can’t give the President, as Allah said, BROADDDDDD powers to take down whomever he deems a ‘terrorist.’

Don’t you remember what Joseph B. said about the Tea party? ::

Notorious GOP on September 30, 2011 at 5:13 PM

He may certainly supported the enemy – but is this reason enough to execute a “hit” on an American citizen without a trial? What if all he had done was write news articles that were sympathetic with Al Qaida?

HondaV65 on September 30, 2011 at 5:10 PM

We are at war with Al Qaeda. The person who is in charge of the deciding who is to be killed and who is not is the Commander in Chief. The Constitution does not call for judicial oversight of the CinC’s decisions.

pedestrian on September 30, 2011 at 5:15 PM

Obama declared war on us. Are we next?

faraway on September 30, 2011 at 5:10 PM

Hyperbole is not a valid argument.

pedestrian on September 30, 2011 at 5:11 PM

Maybe you missed this

We are at War, We Are Your Army. Let’s Take These Sons Of Bitches Out.

faraway on September 30, 2011 at 5:15 PM

Wow. So, all those Symbionese Liberation Army Guys really were murdered by The Man.

/s

trigon on September 30, 2011 at 5:15 PM

If he’s in the middle of robbing a liquor store we can shoot him without due process. I’m OK with this. It’s not a sentence; it’s eliminating a threat.

Ronnie on September 30, 2011 at 5:15 PM

But I thought the left was against these targeted killings of anyone, citizen or not. I remember when they wanted Bush to capture Bin Laden and bring him to trial even though he was not a citizen and self admitted ordering the 9-11 attacks. What changed……Oh yeah, that changed. Never mind.

Now I’m sure they are going to complain that the “republicans” are criticizing this just because it was Obama who ordered it.

AverageJoe on September 30, 2011 at 5:16 PM

Obama declared war on us. Are we next?

faraway on September 30, 2011 at 5:10 PM

Hyperbole is not a valid argument.

pedestrian on September 30, 2011 at 5:11 PM

Maybe you missed this

We are at W.ar, We Are Your Army. Let’s Take These Sons Of B*tches Out.

faraway on September 30, 2011 at 5:16 PM

No he did not get it right, Awlaki was executed by either the CIA or the military. There was no attempt to arrest him.

Daemonocracy on September 30, 2011 at 5:13 PM

You don’t get — I’m saying that openly joining and working for the enemy in a time of war >>> pointing a gun at a cop. No due process, just “Hey what’s that noi”–BOOOOM!!

stefanite on September 30, 2011 at 5:17 PM

Yeah, thank goodness he’ll never be president…

Scrappy on September 30, 2011 at 5:17 PM

There is no doubt as to his guilt.

Ok. So as long as the the government does not “doubt” a citizen’s guilt, it can go ahead and kill him without trial or due process. Great.

CTD on September 30, 2011 at 5:18 PM

The guy tried to get other Americans killed. He repeatedly stated his intent to do Jihad.

There is no doubt as to his guilt. There is no doubt in his death.

William Amos on September 30, 2011 at 5:13 PM

I think most of us can agree that this guy should have been dead.

Kind of the way I think that guy in Florida that was executed last week deserved what he got.

But the thing is – the guy in Florida was convicted via due process, he was not simply dragged off the street and executed by the order of the President.

This is a new power for a President – and one I’m not sure the founders would have agreed with.

There’s a RIGHT WAY to do this – and we need to establish that method – and it should have checks and balances attached to it.

Once that’s done – I’m totally fine with this. But it’s a slippery slope until that happens.

HondaV65 on September 30, 2011 at 5:18 PM

We are at W.ar, We Are Your Army. Let’s Take These Sons Of B*tches Out.

faraway on September 30, 2011 at 5:16 PM

That is a very good reason not to elect Hoffa to be president.

pedestrian on September 30, 2011 at 5:18 PM

If there is another McVeigh, watch for Obama to send out drones over Tea Party rally’s.

Yes, I’m being sarcastic. But maybe not.

V-rod on September 30, 2011 at 5:20 PM

Sorry Ron Pauliana, some men just need killin’ and Awlaki was one of those men. There are times when you have to tell the rules to sit down and shut the frak up.

Limerick on September 30, 2011 at 5:20 PM

No one outside of the far left disputes that if an American joins a foreign army and points a gun at a U.S. soldier on the battlefield, the soldier’s entitled to take him down. No one disputes either that officers are legitimate targets in war, not merely the infantrymen they command. (Ask Admiral Yamamoto about that.)

Yes actually they do dispute that. They don’t actually say it because they know it won’t fly but that is effectively what Ron Paul wants. Its like saying we are fine with you going to war just don’t use violence to do it with.

If we’re going to kill one of our own without independent review of the evidence that he is in fact fighting or commanding fighters on the other side, then we’re handing the president broaaaad power to kill Americans abroad.

He isn’t one of our own when he betrays his country any more than Benedict Arnold was one of our own.

You cannot give due process in a war. Its not a police action its a military campaign. Dropping a 2,000 lb bomb doesn’t allow for due process, it just doesn’t.

“[S]houldn’t Awlaki’s American citizenship count for something? If nothing else, doesn’t it oblige the government to at least disclose why it asserts it can kill an American citizen?”

It should count for a firing squad if he is captured, then tried, and then executed.

sharrukin on September 30, 2011 at 5:20 PM

We are at war with Al Qaeda. The person who is in charge of the deciding who is to be killed and who is not is the Commander in Chief. The Constitution does not call for judicial oversight of the CinC’s decisions.

pedestrian on September 30, 2011 at 5:15 PM

Ok, but did Congress officially declare war against Al-Qaeda?

Daemonocracy on September 30, 2011 at 5:20 PM

By his actions Awlaki gave up any protection his citizenship might have afforded him. He “joined” an army fighting this nation and for that his death is a valid consequence.

katiejane on September 30, 2011 at 5:20 PM

Ok. So as long as the the government does not “doubt” a citizen’s guilt, it can go ahead and kill him without trial or due process. Great.

CTD on September 30, 2011 at 5:18 PM

Due process for every enemy kill. Great.

Ronnie on September 30, 2011 at 5:21 PM

he didn’t take up arms

His ‘arms’ was the internet.

pambi on September 30, 2011 at 5:21 PM

“I think it’s sad” that Ron Paul thinks he’s a Republican.

kirkill on September 30, 2011 at 5:21 PM

Is Ron Paul a pacifist?

No, as an American citizen he is entitled to due process. The President can not just declare an American citizen a traitor on his own, there is the issue of due process.

Daemonocracy on September 30, 2011 at 5:07 PM

This is a true statement.

But there are other factors:

U.S. citizens are subject to loss of citizenship if they perform certain acts voluntarily and with the intention to relinquish U.S. citizenship. These acts include:

Obtaining naturalization in a foreign state;

Taking an oath, affirmation or other formal declaration to a foreign state or its political subdivisions;

Entering or serving in the armed forces of a foreign state engaged in hostilities against the U.S. or serving as a commissioned or non-commissioned officer in the armed forces of a foreign state;

Accepting employment with a foreign government if (a) one has the nationality of that foreign state or (b) a declaration of allegiance is required in accepting the position;

Formally renouncing U.S. citizenship before a U.S. consular officer outside the United States;

Formally renouncing U.S. citizenship within the U.S. (but only “in time of war”);

Conviction for an act of treason.

Its the “intention” thats critical. No due process is necessary if you intend to relinquish. You just say it, and its done. Of course, intent is a tough thing to prove without prima facie evidence, but it isn’t impossible. Registering to vote in a state is proof of intent to become a resident of that state.

In other words, the state can strip you of citizenship through due process, or by your own actions you can give it away. Certainly in Awlikibooti’s case, he gave his away.

BobMbx on September 30, 2011 at 5:22 PM

No he did not get it right, Awlaki was executed by either the CIA or the military. There was no attempt to arrest him.

Daemonocracy on September 30, 2011 at 5:13 PM

You don’t know this. Somebody could have chalked ‘You’re under arrest’ on the nose of the missile.

trigon on September 30, 2011 at 5:22 PM

Once that’s done – I’m totally fine with this. But it’s a slippery slope until that happens.

HondaV65 on September 30, 2011 at 5:18 PM

It’s far more likely that the “slippery slop” tilts in the other direction, leading to the libs tying the hands of our government’s ablity to kill radical islamists.

stefanite on September 30, 2011 at 5:22 PM

If there is another McVeigh, watch for Obama to send out drones over Tea Party rally’s.

V-rod on September 30, 2011 at 5:20 PM

If Congress voted to use the armed forces to put down an armed insurrection, I would not expect judicial review of each and every act of combat.

pedestrian on September 30, 2011 at 5:22 PM

You don’t get — I’m saying that openly joining and working for the enemy in a time of war >>> pointing a gun at a cop. No due process, just “Hey what’s that noi”–BOOOOM!!

stefanite on September 30, 2011 at 5:17 PM

By that definition – Lincoln would have had the authority to assasinate Jefferson Davis – and anyone else who actively participated in rebellion against the union during the civil war.

Lincoln was VERY LIBERAL when it came to violating the constitution during that war. He ignored a SCOTUS decision to release a newspaper editor who was being held without charges. Lincoln suspended Habeas Corpus …

But Lincoln NEVER, as CINC – ordered the Union Army or any security force to execute a Southern leader … or anyone in the South – or anyone who supported the South.

Obama has just done that.

I’m glad this guy is dead – but where does this new “power” take us in the future against people who aren’t so obviously guilty?

HondaV65 on September 30, 2011 at 5:23 PM

“slippery slope”

oops

stefanite on September 30, 2011 at 5:23 PM

Richard Miniter writes

http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2011/09/30/anwar-al-awlaki-and-why-president-barack-obama-is-right-to-kill-u-s-citizens.html

President Obama’s targeted killing of Anwar al-Awlaki, who was born in New Mexico and died in Yemen fighting for al Qaeda, is a victory for America and for common sense.

For the first time since the days of Abraham Lincoln, an American president has ordered the killing of a U.S. citizen, far from any battlefield or courtroom.

And like Abraham Lincoln, Obama has saved the constitution and the country by defending it against a nihilistic and narrow reading of the constitution that would prevent the country from protecting itself.

This has shocked the American Civil Liberties Union, Ron Paul, legal scholars, and libertarians, who have long argued that the constitution’s Fifth Amendment, which says that no citizen shall be “deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law” means that the constitution bars killing non-combatants without a trial. Since Awlaki had not been convicted in a proper court or hasn’t been killed while shooting at American soldiers, they contend, his killing is unconstitutional. A side argument, beloved by the ACLU, is that the method of deciding who goes on the CIA target list is secret and therefore an illegal violation of due process.

These are clever arguments, but wrong. Federal courts have rejected the ACLU’s view when it brought a case seeking to bar the listing of U.S. citizens on the CIA’s terrorist hit list. Awlaki’s own father made a similar argument in another court and it too was rejected.

In the first year of the Obama administration, an intense legal and ethical debate raged behind closed doors. Ultimately, the president himself had to decide. A former constitutional law lecturer, Obama knew the stakes. Wars usually tempt presidents into stretching constitutional limits and, initially, he seemed skeptical of targeting U.S. citizens.

—-

read it all

jp on September 30, 2011 at 5:23 PM

Why can’t we have a mechanism in which a judge either (a) reviews the evidence and signs off on the decision to target a suspect who’s a citizen, a la a probable cause warrant, or (b) adjudicates that the target has constructively expatriated himself by swearing allegiance to an enemy and taking up arms?

I think it would be good idea to have a judge review decisions about traitors, as long as the proceedings were kept secret for a long time, though what information that can be made public should be at the time of the traitor’s death. On the other hand, the last thing in the world I would want for is for some open process with leftists lawyers doing everything they can to subvert our safety.

thuja on September 30, 2011 at 5:23 PM

One overriding meme from the left is that Al Qaeda and other Islamists strike against us barbecue we have conducted military operations in their lands and NOT because of their adherence to Islam.

In other words, it is political and revenge-based, not based on a religious motive.

Well, sorry lefties, Khan’s Manifesto proves you wrong:

“With that said, my status as a traitor is not entirely a reaction to America’s criminality. The core of my being is really based on religious convictions in the absence of politics. I began on this path as an Islamic activist who didn’t believe in fighting any government since, as I had believed, taking on a standing army was impossible for Muslims today. I was already aware that the government’s of the modern world a shari’ah-based state that would have jihad as a part of its foreign policy. However, that didn’t stop me from believing in my general Islamic obligation of working for the establishment of an Islamic State. The ninth verse of Şūrah as-Şaff was my inspiration: {It is He who sent His Messenger with guidance and the religion of truth to manifest it over all religion, although those who associate others with Allah may hate it}. The way I understood this verse was that Muhammad صلى الله عليه وسلم was sent with the mission of bringing Islam to the world; not for it to only remain in the homes and mosques, but to have it as a working system of government that would shape entire societies based on the guidelines of Qur’an and Sunnah.

When my views changed regarding the obligation of jihad in this age – that it will remain individually obligatory (fard `ayn) upon all the Muslims of the world until all of our lands are recaptured from the occupiers – through a purely intellectual conviction from the religious texts (as opposed to pure hatred of American foreign policy), I knew at that point that my religion required me to fight America and her allies as Islam doesn’t shy from stating who is the occupier. I didn’t require sitting with any esteemed scholar to confirm this as the Islamic evidences supporting this position have remained irrefutable ever since the fatawa of Shaykh Abdullah Azzam became widespread; and as for many of those whom I tested, I saw fear and denial in their faces because, quite simply, the truth hurts as it requires our sacrifice to make it manifest.

I am a traitor to America because my religion requires me to be one, {although those who associate others with Allah may hate it}. I am terrifically proud to be a part of such a religion and what Muslim wouldn’t? Islam has the answer to life’s problems and it is what bonds humanity together for the good. The annual hajj is just one example of that. Islam requires its domination and after eighty plus years of living in a post-Caliphate world, I would think that it’s about time Muslims came together to tear down the obstacles. The most important of these obstacles today is obviously America. It is America who has her military and intelligence bases spread throughout our lands in order to help protect their client governments from Muslims who work for Islam’s establishment.”

Opposite Day on September 30, 2011 at 5:23 PM

I’m actually glad that the guy is dead, I’m just troubled that a precedent has been started.

The Federal Government shouldn’t be able to kill a US citizen without a trial.

Nidal Hasan is getting one.
The A-hole who tried to car-bomb times square got one.
Bin Laden didn’t get one, but F*ck him, he isn’t an American.
McVeigh got one.
Ted Kaczynski got one.

Counter-terrorisim is simple if you don’t have to confirm your targets. Just kill everyone. Why the hell have so many of our guys been killed and wounded in the Global War on Terror if just pushing a button and ignoring collateral damage is so fucking easy?

Mord on September 30, 2011 at 5:24 PM

It’s far more likely that the “slippery slop” tilts in the other direction, leading to the libs tying the hands of our government’s ablity to kill radical islamists.

stefanite on September 30, 2011 at 5:22 PM

Then the American people will throw the liberals out of office.

That’s the way our Democracy works.

HondaV65 on September 30, 2011 at 5:24 PM

This is the better McCarthy article on Front Page of NR

http://www.nationalreview.com/articles/278843/war-power-paranoia-andrew-c-mccarthy

jp on September 30, 2011 at 5:24 PM

Ok, but did Congress officially declare war against Al-Qaeda?

Daemonocracy on September 30, 2011 at 5:20 PM

They continue to approve money for it. That’s certainly declaring something.

Ronnie on September 30, 2011 at 5:25 PM

it’s WAR on terror, not “left wing mealy mouthed lawyers” on terror. Obama is clearly in campaign mode now!

kirkill on September 30, 2011 at 5:25 PM

Then the American people will throw the liberals out of office.

That’s the way our Democracy works.

HondaV65 on September 30, 2011 at 5:24 PM

umm, under your suicide pact there wouldn’t be any ‘democracy’ left

jp on September 30, 2011 at 5:25 PM

HondaV65 on September 30, 2011 at 5:23 PM

There was difference between Awlaki and Lee? Show me, please the crossing lines. Show me the connection between AQ and the the Bonnie Blue Flag. Balderdash.

Limerick on September 30, 2011 at 5:26 PM

You don’t get — I’m saying that openly joining and working for the enemy in a time of war >>> pointing a gun at a cop. No due process, just “Hey what’s that noi”–BOOOOM!!

stefanite on September 30, 2011 at 5:17 PM

Was he declared a traitor? Treason is a crime and we have these laws for a reason. There should be a clear process for men like Awlaki and declaring what he is besides the President – one man – declaring someone a traitor no matter how obvious.

He was executed, this is not the same as a cop defending himself, those analogies don’t work since different situations require different responses.

Daemonocracy on September 30, 2011 at 5:26 PM

insert ‘no’ before difference.

Limerick on September 30, 2011 at 5:27 PM

Why is the GOP allowing Noam Chomsky to run as a Republican?

flataffect on September 30, 2011 at 5:27 PM

That’s where his citizenship comes in. If we’re going to kill one of our own without independent review of the evidence that he is in fact fighting or commanding fighters on the other side, then we’re handing the president broaaaad power to kill Americans abroad.

No we’re not, ROFL. We’re handing him the specific power to kill Americans abroad who have joined the enemy in killing *US*. Perhaps the problem is that his citizenship wasn’t summarily REVOKED long ago, hmmm?

As Danger Room says, “[S]houldn’t Awlaki’s American citizenship count for something?

Again, no. This is ridiculous. It counted nothing to *him*, why should it count to *us*?

Midas on September 30, 2011 at 5:28 PM

I hope someone would interpret the Constitution for me. I’m too lazy to read it.
/

crash72 on September 30, 2011 at 5:28 PM

Was he declared a traitor?

Daemonocracy on September 30, 2011 at 5:26 PM

Yes, HE declared that many times. HE gave up his citizenship. HE was a legitimate target.

Ronnie on September 30, 2011 at 5:29 PM

But Lincoln NEVER, as CINC – ordered the Union Army or any security force to execute a Southern leader … or anyone in the South – or anyone who supported the South.

No, just thousands of farmboys.

As I detailed in an earlier thread, Abe’s actions and speeches indicate that he never thought of the people of living in the CSA as foreigners. He always considered them US citizens. To preserve the union.

So he’s guilty of slaughtering thousands and thousands of US citizens to ensure the continuance of the union.

They didn’t get due process, and I suggest that everyone that died did not relinquish their citizenship anymore than Almyasshurts did.

BobMbx on September 30, 2011 at 5:29 PM

One of our own. I pray you think not.

Limerick on September 30, 2011 at 5:29 PM

Ok, but did Congress officially declare war against Al-Qaeda?

Daemonocracy on September 30, 2011 at 5:20 PM

The Constitution doesn’t say that a declaration of war has to take a specific wording. The fact that Congress approved a budget that called for taking up arms against Al Qaeda is enough for me.

pedestrian on September 30, 2011 at 5:29 PM

Perhaps the problem is that his citizenship wasn’t summarily REVOKED long ago, hmmm?

You can’t summarily revoke citizenship. But you could adjudicate its revocation. That’s my point in the post.

Allahpundit on September 30, 2011 at 5:30 PM

Mbx: I think that the ‘entering or serving in the armed forces’ section needs to be updated. That’s clearly the easiest way to justify Awlaki’s death (and why someone couldn’t post this this morning, I don’t know), but a terrorist organization is not a foreign state.

They probably should have closed this loophole as soon as 9/11 happened.

Scott H on September 30, 2011 at 5:30 PM

Obligatory….

“Obama would never have ordered Awlaki killed if his poll numbers were not so low.”

AverageJoe on September 30, 2011 at 5:31 PM

Then the American people will throw the liberals out of office.

That’s the way our Democracy works.

HondaV65 on September 30, 2011 at 5:24 PM

Unfortunately, a) they likely won’t, b) will simply replace it with a liberal that has an “-R” after its name, and c) it won’t matter either way. What we had that was worth saving is gone already.

Midas on September 30, 2011 at 5:31 PM

One overriding meme from the left is that Al Qaeda and other Islamists strike against us barbecue we have conducted military operations in their lands and NOT because of their adherence to Islam.

barbecue?

BobMbx on September 30, 2011 at 5:31 PM

§ 1481. LOSS OF NATIONALITY BY NATIVE-BORN OR NATURALIZED CITIZEN; VOLUNTARY ACTION; BURDEN OF PROOF; PRESUMPTIONS

(a) A person who is a national of the United States whether by birth or naturalization, shall lose his nationality by voluntarily performing any of the following acts with the intention of relinquishing United States nationality-

(1) obtaining naturalization in a foreign state upon his own application or upon an application filed by a duly authorized agent, after having attained the age of eighteen years; or

(2) taking an oath or making an affirmation or other formal declaration of allegiance to a foreign state or a political subdivision thereof, after having attained the age of eighteen years; or

(3) entering, or serving in, the armed forces of a foreign state if

(A) such armed forces are engaged in hostilities against the United States, or

(B) such persons serve as a commissioned or non-commissioned officer; or

(4)(A) accepting, serving in, or performing the duties of any office, post, or employment under the government of a foreign state or a political subdivision thereof, after attaining the age of eighteen years if he has or acquires the nationality of such foreign state; or

(B) accepting, serving in, or performing the duties of any office, post, or employment under the government of a foreign state or a political subdivision thereof, after attaining the age of eighteen years for which office, post, or employment an oath, affirmation, or declaration of allegiance is required; or

(5) making a formal renunciation of nationality before a diplomatic or consular officer of the United States in a foreign state, in such form as may be prescribed by the Secretary of State; or

(6) making in the United States a formal written renunciation of nationality in such form as may be prescribed by, and before such officer as may be designated by, the Attorney General, whenever the United States shall be in a state of war and the Attorney General shall approve such renunciation as not contrary to the interests of national defense; or

(7) committing any act of treason against, or attempting by force to overthrow, or bearing arms against, the United States, violating or conspiring to violate any of the provisions of section 2383 of title 18, or willfully performing any act in violation of section 2385 of title 18, or violating section 2384 of title 18 by engaging in a conspiracy to overthrow, put down, or to destroy by force the Government of the United States, or to levy war against them, if and when he is convicted thereof by a court martial or by a court of competent jurisdiction.

(b) Whenever the loss of United States nationality is put in issue in any action or proceeding commenced on or after September 26, 1961 under, or by virtue of, the provisions of this chapter or any other Act, the burden shall be upon the person or party claiming that such loss occurred, to establish such claim by a preponderance of the evidence. Any person who commits or performs, or who has committed or performed, any act of expatriation under the provisions of this chapter or any other Act shall be presumed to have done so voluntarily, but such presumption may be rebutted upon a showing, by a preponderance of the evidence, that the act or acts committed or performed were not done voluntarily.

Have at it.

catmman on September 30, 2011 at 5:32 PM

But Lincoln NEVER, as CINC – ordered the Union Army or any security force to execute a Southern leader … or anyone in the South – or anyone who supported the South.

At one time it was considered inhumane to kill an officer because then the soldiers under his command would have no leader and would then commit atrocities.

It was up to Lincoln to decide whether the best strategy to win the war was to kill Lee or not.

pedestrian on September 30, 2011 at 5:33 PM

I keep asking myself which Constitutional genius jp supports.

Notorious GOP on September 30, 2011 at 5:33 PM

barbecue?

BobMbx on September 30, 2011 at 5:31 PM

Definately… Like Perry, jihadist dont like pork barbecue.

AverageJoe on September 30, 2011 at 5:33 PM

There were American citizens in the Japanese cities that were carpet bombed by the American Air Force in the years 1943 to 1945.

What about their due process? They were in fact guilty of nothing except being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Should the bomber pilots and Curtis LeMay have been tried for murder?

If not then why are we trying to give a confessed traitor more consideration than American P.O.W.’s or, American citizens living in Japan got?

sharrukin on September 30, 2011 at 5:33 PM

There was difference between Awlaki and Lee? Show me, please the crossing lines. Show me the connection between AQ and the the Bonnie Blue Flag. Balderdash.

Limerick on September 30, 2011 at 5:26 PM

The connection? The US was at war with the Confederacy – which it did not recognize as a legitimate government – LINCOLN DID recognize everyone in the South as remaining US citizens.

He never ordered any of them to be executed. Not Lee, not Davis … nor anyone under them.

The US is now at war with AQ – and the President has assumed unilateral authority to hunt down and execute a disgusting man – who nevertheless is an American.

You may agree with killing the guy – but will you agree with killing the next one?

All we’re asking for here is for some formal procedure to be established with checks and balances so that the President doesn’t have willy-nilly control over shooting American citizens.

Too much to ask? Jesus man – you do realize that Hugo Chavez orders this kind of thing all the time and there are no checks on him. Why would we emulate his example?

HondaV65 on September 30, 2011 at 5:33 PM

How many innocent people have to die before some of these great “thinkers” get their priorities straight. Geez! People are stupid sometimes. Awlaki and Bin Laden are in Hell and nothing more than casualties in the war on terror. Too bad we couldn’t put pork chops in their pockets before they took the bullet. Due process for mass murdering terrorists my ass.

ultracon on September 30, 2011 at 5:34 PM

Catherine Herridge reported that Awlaki assisted several of the 9/11 bombers in settling in the U.S. preparatory to those attacks. He directly influenced the Fort Hood shooter. He’s hidden in Yemen in order to continue to conduct war against his native land. Death to traitors.

flataffect on September 30, 2011 at 5:34 PM

This is a classroom excercise in jaw-wagging. There is no reason NOT to scatter Alwaki’s brains across the universe. None. Thump your BoR’s all you want, the man had no ‘rihts’. He chose his end and we delivered it to him.

Limerick on September 30, 2011 at 5:35 PM

This is what happens when we can’t interrogate people at GITMO. They just start killing combatants instead of capturing them.

Obama only has himself to thank for this one.

E L Frederick (Sniper One) on September 30, 2011 at 5:35 PM

To expect our armed forces to go to Yemen and kidnap this a$$hat to placate some people’s bizarre notions regarding the constitution is just plain nuts.

Blake on September 30, 2011 at 5:35 PM

sharrukin on September 30, 2011 at 5:33 PM

Any innocent Americans killed as a result of carpet bombing were collateral casualties – they were not specifically targeted by the President of the United States – in fact, they were not targeted at all.

HondaV65 on September 30, 2011 at 5:36 PM

jp on September 30, 2011 at 5:23 PM

That was a good read and has alleviated my concerns. The Lincoln comparison had crossed my mind, but one was a declared war by Congress and this one is not. My concern was should Congress or the courts be involved in some manner, but Federal courts have already rejected the ACLU’s arguments in barring American Citizens from being put on the CIA hit list according to that article.

http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2011/09/30/anwar-al-awlaki-and-why-president-barack-obama-is-right-to-kill-u-s-citizens.html

Daemonocracy on September 30, 2011 at 5:36 PM

catmman on September 30, 2011 at 5:32 PM

Thanks. Couldn’t find that in my copy of the Constitution, but I agree, he was an American citizen at the time of his death and afforded all rights.

crash72 on September 30, 2011 at 5:36 PM

I’m afraid Ron Paul is simply reaffirming the fact that he needs to retire. In the past, before we got all politically correct, an individual like Awlaki would have been hung for treason on the battlefield.

I find that a Hellfire missile is an adequate substitute.

hachiban on September 30, 2011 at 5:36 PM

“What would the war on terror have looked like without drones?”

It would like the Bush administration and GITMO along with John Yoo and the lawyers.

Obama said BS to all that and just went with a Gunnery Sergeant Hartman approach of “kill em’ all and let God sort em’ out” approach that the left would NEVER have allowed during the Bush administration.

Imagine if instead of capturing KSM and subjecting him to the HORRORS of GITMO and weatherboarding, we just found out were he was and just turned him and any others around him in the kill zone of the missile into GOO.

Would the left rent it’s clothes in disgust of the abandoning of “due process’ and all those other wailing memes?

Of course they would . In BUSH was in office.

Welcome to the new war my friends!

I love that Obama can kill with Dona and the left not only gives him a pass, they celebrate it!

Kill em’ all!

Bomb all the damn countries who harbor this scum and turn them into GOO!

Opposite Day on September 30, 2011 at 5:37 PM

Have at it.

catmman on September 30, 2011 at 5:32 PM

You’re late. I assume the bold is yours.

Way up at the top of there is an excerpt that says with the intention of relinquishing United States nationality-.

Its an “and” function, “meaning any of the below and this”.

Personally, I think he gave away his citizenship. Just like Rahm gave away his residency in Ill. But, we all know how that turned out.

BobMbx on September 30, 2011 at 5:37 PM

catmman: Under 7(b) of what you cite… isn’t that ‘guilty until proven innocent’?

Scott H on September 30, 2011 at 5:37 PM

To expect our armed forces to go to Yemen and kidnap this a$$hat to placate some people’s bizarre notions regarding the constitution is just plain nuts.

Blake on September 30, 2011 at 5:35 PM

You don’t have to do that …

Hold a closed door trial in Congress – you can even invite the defendent to show up to defend himself. He won’t – but who cares? Congress reviews the evidence – and if cause is merited – they revoke the guys citizenship.

Then the POTUS can target the guy the same way he did OBL.

This guy’s been out there forever – we’ve had time to run through any administrative procedure to legitimize this.

HondaV65 on September 30, 2011 at 5:38 PM

Daemonocracy on September 30, 2011 at 5:36 PM

So you must be against bin laden’s death too, since we’re not at war or something…

Ronnie on September 30, 2011 at 5:38 PM

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