Obviously, there has been a big kerfuffle over the “targeted killing” of Anwar al-Awlaki, a United States citizen turned al Qaeda big wig (along with Samir Khan, another traitor who hails originally from North Carolina). Said kerfuffle is bipartisan in nature, with many saying that killing him amounts to assassination of a US citizen, and is unconstitutional, violating the Fifth and Six Amendments. And along comes far left progressive Roger Simon at The Politico to put it into perspective: Can Obama legally kill you?
Should the president have the right to kill you? And if so, under what circumstances?
If you are a U.S. citizen living in the United States and plotting the murder of your neighbors — let’s say they mow their lawns very early every Sunday — it is unlikely a predator drone will fire a Hellfire missile through your kitchen window and take you out.
President Barack Obama, who has become a huge fan of drones, simply would not dream of doing such a thing, and U.S. law would stop him if he did.
But if you are a U.S. citizen living overseas and plotting the death of American citizens from, let’s say, Yemen, you can say hello to our little friends, the 100-lb. Hellfires.
While I certainly respect those who think we are on a slippery slope, I have to whole-heartedly disagree. Furthermore, if you, as a US citizen, head on over to, say, Yemen on a business trip, you won’t be targeted. Unless you plan on joining an al Qaeda cell and preaching violence and/or performing violence against the United States, at which point, you’re a traitor.
This was apparently the first time a U.S. president targeted a U.S. citizen for death overseas, which has upset any number of people ranging from liberals to Ron Paul.
To which I say: “Get over it.”
Not often you’re going to hear a liberal say that. Of course, let’s be honest, this could be do to Simon being an ObamaZombie, and totally in the bag for Obama, and attempting to protect Obama from criticism. One does wonder what Simon would say had Bush done this, or, say, President McCain.
Further, to my way of thinking, targeting a U.S. citizen for death without trial had precedent. About 75,000 U.S. citizens were killed in action by Union soldiers in the Civil War because these “rebels” were in rebellion against the United States. (Abraham Lincoln never recognized rebel forces as citizens of a foreign country because he never recognized the South’s right to secede.)
Al-Awlaki was in rebellion against the United States, actively trying to kill us. Or so says our Justice Department. But we never arrested al-Awlaki, read him his rights, gave him a lawyer and tried him on cable TV.
Arresting Awlaki would have been very, very difficult, and would have put American lives on the line, provided Yemen even gave the US permission to have members of our armed services operating on the ground in Yemen.
Had this happened back in 2001-2003, there would barely be any discussion of the issue. The farther we have gotten away from 9/11, the more people want to look at the issue as an intellectual study. We remember how some people freaked out over waterboarding a grand total of 3 stone cold terrorists, along with other issues. We remember how we were now supposed to treat stone cold jihadis with kid gloves. But, no, Obama won’t be launching a drone strike on a TEA Party gathering.