TRUMP IS INHERITING POWER TO ASSASSINATE ANYONE, INCLUDING US CITIZENS, WITH NO OVERSIGHT | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED

TRUMP IS INHERITING POWER TO ASSASSINATE ANYONE, INCLUDING US CITIZENS, WITH NO OVERSIGHT

The Obama administration institutionalized a global killing apparatus that is unaccountable to the judiciary, and only nominally accountable to Congress. If US citizens aren't always entitled to due process, what limits will there be on attacks on non-citizens, especially under a Trump presidency?

Now, as President-elect Donald Trump prepares to take office after a campaign in which he promised to carry out war crimes, such as killing the families of suspected terrorists and reviving the torture program, Awlaki's death is getting renewed attention. If Awlaki, a US citizen, could be deprived of life without judicial oversight, what limits will there be on Trump's authority to carry out similar strikes against citizens and non-citizens alike?

Jameel Jaffer, author of the new book The Drone Memos and director of the Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University, explained to me that at its core, the Awlaki case was about centralized power in the executive branch.

"My concern is, the Obama administration claimed the authority to kill people far away from conventional battlefields without ever having to account for its action to any court," Jaffer told me in a phone interview. "And the al-Awlaki case was really about that question: Should the government be able to kill its own citizens without explaining to a court why it's doing it? The Obama administration was very successful in persuading the courts to defer to the executive branch. The result is that this awesome power is not subject now to any meaningful oversight by the judiciary. And that power will now be available to the next administration."

Webmaster's Commentary: 

I would like to hope that Trump's threat to extrajudicially assassinate people and their families was simply campaign rhetoric, and nothing more.

My hope is, after having taken the Oath of Office, he will very much move to the center.

Should he choose to exercise this executive power of extrajudicial assassination, he will prove himself a profound disappointment, and moral embarrassment, to many of the people who supported him over Clinton in this last election cycle.

Comments

I agree that it was campaign rhetoric...

AuntieX

I agree that it was campaign rhetoric...I think Trump's crazy torture talk early in the campaign was to get him past the neocon gatekeepers during the primary election process so that he'd sound acceptably warmonginering...Oh their horror when they found out differently and that Putin wants to work WITH the Russians!

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