Paul Bremer and served in the Department of Justice under Janet Reno.
Seems like this D.C. power couple has really hitched their little red wagon to that whole "terrorism" thing. You ever think about how many folks would be working at Burger King if the CIA backed "terrorists" didn't exist? Not that there's anything wrong with working at Burger King. At least those guys aren't trying to justify murdering people (obvious fallacy in that argument aside).
There's a lot wrong with this memo which is odd because suddenly all those congressional voices who claimed Obama didn't have the authority to murder us in our sleep all of a sudden stood up and said "Oh well... there you have it. I guess I was wrong. Carry on President Drone Strike."
Lots to be said about self preservation I suppose. You can ask Paul Wellstone about that. Oh wait, no you can't.
David Swanson offered up a couple of things that stood out to him, which was good, but he failed to mention one of the glaring problems, or better still, two of them. But still, his evaluation of the memo is worth mentioning for this:
"In the end, the memo admits that calling something a war isn’t good enough; the targeted victim has to have been an imminent threat to the United States. But who gets to decide whether he or she was that? Why, whoever does the killing of course. And what happens if nobody ever even makes an unsupported assertion to that effect? Nothing, of course." -- David Swanson
David leaves it at that without giving his readers the most important part of his argument: any and all presumed justification in the extra-judicial murder of Anwar al-Awlaki generated by this memo is contradicted by the fact that supposed evidence against him, was redacted from the memo itself.
Take a look at this part of a decent article appearing on AlterNet:
3. No evidence is presented. Many portions of Barron’s legal reasoning were released. But one important part of the U.S. case against Awlaki remains redacted in the legal memo: the actual evidence used to determine Awlaki was "an active, high-level leader of an enemy force who is continually involved in planning and recruiting for terrorist attacks," as the memo states. Civil liberties activists and journalists have questioned that assertion. And the government has not released evidence that backs it up. -- AlterNet
Awlaki was to Yemen as ISIS is to Iraq. He was an internet sock puppet who gave speeches that were mildly threatening at worst. Mainly just ideological opposition to our imperial games abroad in the Middle East.
As is usually the case with our "terrorist" flavors of the day, Awlaki had an unusual background for someone so opposed to the Great Satan: he dined with him.
"Anwar al-Awlaki – the radical spiritual leader linked to several 9/11 attackers, the Fort Hood shooting, and the attempted Christmas Day bombing of an airliner – was a guest at the Pentagon (for a dinner and meet and greet) in the months after 9/11, a Pentagon official confirmed to CBS News.
"Awlaki was invited as '...part of an informal outreach program' in which officials sought contact '...with leading members of the Muslim community,' the official said. At that time, Awlaki was widely viewed as a 'moderate' imam at a mosque in Northern Virginia." -- CBS Oct. 2010
This guy turned out to be the leading motive behind all sorts of odd "terrorist" activities from 9/11 to the Christmas Eve Pampers of Doom Psyop. Hell, had the narrative been that he was still alive, he probably would have been used as the pretext for the Benghazi attack and kept Killary from having to use the "Innocence of the Muslims" cover.
The most famous of his pretext jobs of course was the Dec. 2009 cruise missile strike which was authorized by President Peace Prize in an effort to help our puppet dictator in Yemen thwart a legitimate uprising against him. The missiles killed 23 children and ObamaGod and his "progressive" followers were suddenly desperate for some kind of justification for that brutal, horrific act committed by their savior. So, along comes ISIS in Yemen or al-Awlaki for short and everything is forgiven.
(read Peace Prize President Kills 23 Children and 17 Women in Order to Protect the Assets of the IMF and World Bank Dec. 2009)
Frankly, it's offensive that we are sitting around pondering whether or not Obama has the authority to murder one U.S. citizen (a guy who was partying at the Pentagon not that long ago) after the piece of shit slaughtered 23 children on behalf of a brutal dictatorship in Yemen. Where the fuck is all the Adam Lanza outrage from the progressive left on that one?
So now we have our Pentagon partier, enemy of the Great Satan, serving his needs in yet another way: providing the pretext for Obama's Murder Loophole Memo. Curious how the “terrorists” always seem to do that, isn’t it? (“Further, the process of transformation, even if it brings revolutionary change, is likely to be a long one, absent some catastrophic and catalyzing event – like a new Pearl Harbor.” Dick Cheney, Paul Wolfowitz, Donald Rumsfeld Rebuilding Americas Defenses -- PNAC, 2000 )
All that said, one thing Mr. Swanson seems to forget to mention in his mostly on-point criticism of the Murder Loophole Memo is the fact that it's partly based on Israeli law... not ours.
AlterNet and many others have mentioned this less than subtle fact while for some reason, Mr. Swanson didn't. Go figure. I guess David didn't want to have to apologize like Gary Oldman recently did for saying Jews control Hollywood or something to that effect.
"2. Israeli law is cited as a precedent. The U.S. and its number one ally in the Middle East are fond of borrowing from each other when it comes to the most repressive tactics used in the war on terror. Drones are no exception–and neither is the killing of Awlaki.
"Buried in a footnote in the memo is a citation of an Israeli Supreme Court decision on why extrajudicial assassinations are legal if capture is not feasible.
"As the Electronic Intifada's Rania Khalek notes, in 2006, the Israeli Supreme Court ruled that it was legal to extrajudicially target alleged Palestinian militants if an operation to capture the person is impossible or involves high risk to soldiers. That case and reasoning is cited in the Justice Department memo to justify why Awlaki was killed.
"It also mirrors what U.S. officials have said in public: that 'targeted killings' - the euphemism for assassinations–are justified when capturing the suspect is not feasible. But the memo doesn't provide reasons why capturing Awlaki was not feasible. The U.S. is a strong ally of the Yemeni government, which had also been going after Awlaki. Critics of the operation to kill Awlaki have questioned why Yemeni forces didn’t arrest the man." AlterNet(http://www.alternet.org/civil-liberties/8-things-you-should-know-about-shocking-legal-memo-justified-assassinating-us?paging=off¤t_page=1#bookmark)
Obviously, there are immense legal problems with this administration trying to cite Israeli Supreme Court cases as justification for actions taken here. In my opinion, that's the old "turd in the punchbowl" ruling, meaning that footnote should basically have discredited the entire memo as any sort of authoritative legal document. That’s too say nothing of large parts of it being redacted.
What's interesting here though is the fact that much of it WAS redacted and for some reason those administration editors saw fit to leave that footnote intact for all of us to see.
Why do you think they did that? They could have easily redacted it and whatever clause made reference to it. But instead, they deliberately left it so the citizens of this country who actually pay attention would see it... would see that President Peace Prize is adopting precedents set by one of the most brutal and criminal governments in the so-called "free world"
I guess that's part and parcel of the message being sent. You can figure out what that is for yourself. I would hate to have to apologize to Bibi like Randy did to Jessie Jackson on South Park for suggesting Tel Aviv controls Washington or the U.S. is becoming too much like Israel.
For all you strangely silent "progressives" out there, yeah, there is a lot wrong with the Obama Murder Loophole Justification Memo and it just goes to show you need to be careful of all that CHANGE you ask for, cuz you just might get it.
Or better still, maybe you should take more time to vet your heroes in the future. Just sayin..
Obama's Deeply Flawed Murder Loophole Memo Cites Israeli Law