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Rand Paul speaking in defense of liberty on the floor of the Senate

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Besides, none of this means that federal agents who kill someone without justification, on US soil, are immune from prosecution.What are you talking about? Al Awlaki's son was killed in the drone strike targeting Ibrahim al-Banna. Asking for a reason is nonsensical. There wasn't a reason, because there was no intention to kill him.

 

Okay I did not know that. Sorry... By the way did anyone from Washington actually say who the real target was or are we just assuming that it was not the kid, or that he was not included?

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Nicky, the feasibility of arrest was addressed in the white paper on page 7 or 8. If arrest is feasible, no strike will happen.

 

You're right that the rules of war apply to strikes on US soil if the US is in fact at war on US soil. You're also right that, by extension, the judicial process changes. Unfortunately the US doesn't clearly define it's wars or wartime objectives anymore. It is currently engaged in one such perpetual war with borderless enemies, which makes this an issue when it wouldn't otherwise be one. Congress gave an authorization of force to invade Afghanistan. The executive branch then (rightly) used this authorization of force to apply to Al Qaida and its 'affiliates'. It seems on the verge of being applied even more broadly. Applying the authorization of force to other Islamist terrorist groups may be appropriate, but where does it end? At Hamas and Hezbollah? All states that sponsor terror? When we're at war with Domestic Christian militias? I'd like to see a military victory against state sponsors of terror, but I also think that, at some point, we need another authorization of force.

 

The Fort Hood shooter "isn't" an enemy combatant despite his relationship to al-Awlaki, who was. It seems to me that Rand Paul's grandstanding doesn't really address my primary concerns. I will, however, support him to the extent that he brings clarity to these issues.

Edited by FeatherFall
typo correction
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Here is the video that originally got me interested in the issue in early February. Cato's Julian Sanchez discusses the white paper:

 

He discussed al-Awlaki's son, but I don't want that issue to get in the way of Sanchez's other points (as Nicky mentioned, the son was probably not the primary target). One of the important points Sanchez raised was this: not only is the oversight kept secret, but there was also an attempt to keep the legal justification for such oversight secret.

Edited by FeatherFall
fixed video link
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In Anwar al-Awlaki's case, if I recall correctly, from being born in Colorado. I would guess a somewhat significant percentage now are natural born. And the First Amendment pretty much prohibits the US government from screening a citizenship candidate' views on theocracy.

 

Would it be different if the candidate was a Nazi propagandist in World War II? I can see your point about being born here, but from what I remember, a lot of these fiery Imam's in Britain were imigrants, and if that is the case in the U.S., I don't see how the first ammendment applies in those cases. If we are at war with Islamism (or whatever you want to call it) we should not permit propaganda from entering into this country. This is the incitement to violence case in the context of war.

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This wouldn't be an issue of the president would properly define his conflicts. The WSJ video that the president does actually have the right to kill people without trial during war. Its not a fifth amendment issue, the danger comes from the altruism and pragmatism inherent in main stream foreign policy discussions.

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