Obama's Memo on Killing US Citizens Is a Disgrace

Glenn Greenwald: No free society should sanction this
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 5, 2013 1:59 PM CST
President Obama answers a question during a joint news conference.   (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

(Newser) – The Obama administration's rationale for when it's OK to kill US citizens is fundamentally un-American, writes Glenn Greenwald at the Guardian. For example, the Justice Department memo says the US is justified in going after terrorists—based on the assertions of US officials supposedly in the know about who is or isn't a terrorist. Where's the due process? "The distinction between (a) government accusations and (b) proof of guilt is central to every free society, by definition, yet this memo—and those who defend Obama's assassination power—willfully ignore it."

The memo has at its core the "Bush/Cheney worldview," writes Greenwald in his lengthy critique. "If you believe the president has the power to order US citizens executed far from any battlefield with no charges or trial, then it's truly hard to conceive of any asserted power you would find objectionable." Read Greenwald's full column here. At Salon, David Sirota thinks the memo makes clear that the "ever-expanding drone war" is so out of control that not even the Constitution can rein it in. It is, in short, "too big to curtail." Read Sirota's column here. (Read more US Justice Department stories.)

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