by William Teach | October 10, 2010 9:33 am
The editorial board over the use of targeted killing towards Islamist terrorist and their associates, and wag their finger in a “tsk tsk tsk” manner, because, hey, Obama’s the messiah: Lethal Force Under Law
The Obama administration has sharply expanded the shadow war against terrorists, using both the military and the C.I.A. to track down and kill hundreds of them, in a dozen countries, on and off the battlefield.
Personally, I say “Bravo, Obama, Bravo!” After all his wishy washy talk, he has shown some cajones in this area of his job duties. Good for him. Obviously, the NY Times disagrees
The drone program has been effective, killing more than 400 Al Qaeda militants this year alone, according to American officials, but fewer than 10 noncombatants. But assassinations are a grave act and subject to abuse – and imitation by other countries. The government needs to do a better job of showing the world that it is acting in strict compliance with international law.
I’m surprised they didn’t mention the Arizona illegal immigration law, which they, and other liberal outlets, portrayed the same way.
The United States has the right under international law to try to prevent attacks being planned by terrorists connected to Al Qaeda, up to and including killing the plotters. But it is not within the power of a commander in chief to simply declare anyone anywhere a combatant and kill them, without the slightest advance independent oversight. The authorization for military force approved by Congress a week after 9/11 empowers the president to go after only those groups or countries that committed or aided the 9/11 attacks. The Bush administration’s distortion of that mandate led to abuses that harmed the United States around the world.
First of all, by independent oversight, they mean the liberal media. Second, are they really saying that we could only go after a tiny sub-section of jihadis, and only go after them in Afghanistan? Obviously, they are trying to link Iraq to 9/11, which the Bush administration never did, despite liberal Approved Talking Points. Yet, the oath of office the President takes makes it mandatory that he authorize the use of methods to defend the USA from all enemies. Yes, I know, that pesky outdated Constitution thingy.
The issue of who can be targeted applies directly to the case of Anwar al-Awlaki, an American citizen hiding in Yemen, who officials have admitted is on an assassination list. Did he inspire through words the Army psychiatrist who shot up Fort Hood, Tex., last November, and the Nigerian man who tried to blow up an airliner on Christmas? Or did he actively participate in those plots, and others? The difference is crucial. If the United States starts killing every Islamic radical who has called for jihad, there will be no end to the violence.
Perhaps the Islamic jihadi issue will never be settled. Yet, it is better to Do Unto Them Before They Don Unto The USA, a notion that Obama, for all his progressive faults, seems to understand.
The Obama administration needs to go out of its way to demonstrate that it is keeping its promise to do things differently than the Bush administration did. It must explain how targets are chosen, demonstrate that attacks are limited and are a last resort, and allow independent authorities to oversee the process.
In other words, the Times is stamping it’s foot and saying that the Obama admin. MUST explain what is going on, like a 4 year old asking why he/she can’t have a cookie before dinner. And then they’ll end up leaking the information for the world to see. Think I’m over-doing it? The Times goes on to discuss “Public Guidelines”, and ends that section with
The government needs to make public its guidelines for determining who is a terrorist and who can be targeted for death. It should clearly describe how it follows international law in these cases and list the internal procedures and checks it uses before a killing is approved. That can be done without formally acknowledging the strikes are taking place in specific countries.
If only there was some way for the NY Times to easily access information electronically without leaving the comfort of their afternoon cocktail meeting rooms. Then they would be able to find out that Islamic jihadis are, surprise! not covered by the Geneva Conventions, and are considered “unlawful enemy combatants.” They do not wear the uniform of any country, they can be considered “spies,” and can be summarily executed. I think we all understand that the far left will immediately attempt to defend the jihadis, but, do we really understand why? I supposed Bush hatred is one reason, but, really, that is just not good enough.
Next up, the Fish Wrap wants to limit the targets (and make sure they tell everyone about the list, especially the NY Times leadership), and then they want to use “assassination” as a last resort. Hmm, if we can call even a low level Islamist without putting our forces in harms way, targeted killing sounds good to me!
Finally, to wrap it all up, the Times discusses “Independent Oversight.” And, yes, they do want to give all jihadis the American Right of due process. They would like an independent court set up to oversee anyone on the list. Which, we all know the Times and other liberal outlets would whine about. They actually want the “equivalent of a judicial warrant” in order to wage war. No, I’m serious. Read the 4th to last paragraph. Then we get to
Congressional leaders are secretly briefed on each C.I.A. attack, and say they are satisfied with the information they get and with the process. Nonetheless, that process is informal and could be changed at any time by this president or his successors. Formal oversight is a better way of demonstrating confidence in American methods.
To put that in Real Speak, the Times is more interested in the world loving us than doing everything possible to protect our nation and our people.
Crossed at Pirate’s Cove. Follow me on Twitter @WilliamTeach. Re-Change 2010!
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