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Thread: Court orders U.S. to release memo on drones, al-Awlaki killing

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    Court orders U.S. to release memo on drones, al-Awlaki killing

    NEW YORK (Reuters) - A federal appeals court ordered the U.S. Department of Justice to turn over key portions of a memorandum justifying the government's targeted killing of people linked to terrorism, including Americans.

    In a case pitting executive power against the public's right to know what its government does, the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals reversed a lower court ruling preserving the secrecy of the legal rationale for the killings, such as the death of U.S. citizen Anwar al-Awlaki in a 2011 drone strike in Yemen.

    Ruling for the New York Times, a unanimous three-judge panel said the government waived its right to secrecy by making repeated public statements justifying targeted killings.

    ... skipping

    "The court reaffirmed a bedrock principle of democracy: The people do not have to accept blindly the government's assurances that it is operating within the bounds of the law; they get to see for themselves the legal justification that the government is working from," McCraw said in a statement.

    ... skipping

    "This is a resounding rejection of the government's effort to use secrecy and selective disclosure to manipulate public opinion about the targeted killing program," ACLU Deputy Legal Director Jameel Jaffer said in a statement.

    The case is New York Times Co et al v. U.S. Department of Justice et al, 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, Nos. 13-422, 13-445.

    Court orders U.S. to release memo on drones, al-Awlaki killing

    Sometimes the judiciary does get it right but I'm sure this will not rise to the level of war crimes as it should.

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    Re: Court orders U.S. to release memo on drones, al-Awlaki killing

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob0627 View Post
    NEW YORK (Reuters) - A federal appeals court ordered the U.S. Department of Justice to turn over key portions of a memorandum justifying the government's targeted killing of people linked to terrorism, including Americans.

    In a case pitting executive power against the public's right to know what its government does, the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals reversed a lower court ruling preserving the secrecy of the legal rationale for the killings, such as the death of U.S. citizen Anwar al-Awlaki in a 2011 drone strike in Yemen.

    Ruling for the New York Times, a unanimous three-judge panel said the government waived its right to secrecy by making repeated public statements justifying targeted killings.

    ... skipping

    "The court reaffirmed a bedrock principle of democracy: The people do not have to accept blindly the government's assurances that it is operating within the bounds of the law; they get to see for themselves the legal justification that the government is working from," McCraw said in a statement.

    ... skipping

    "This is a resounding rejection of the government's effort to use secrecy and selective disclosure to manipulate public opinion about the targeted killing program," ACLU Deputy Legal Director Jameel Jaffer said in a statement.

    The case is New York Times Co et al v. U.S. Department of Justice et al, 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, Nos. 13-422, 13-445.

    Court orders U.S. to release memo on drones, al-Awlaki killing

    Sometimes the judiciary does get it right but I'm sure this will not rise to the level of war crimes as it should.
    And what happens if the government decides they don't want to turn this information over because of a DoJ internal investigation (that may or may not actually exist) or possibly a matter of national security. The Judiciary can only get it right if the government entity they are ordering complies. What we've seen so far is this current WH more so than any previous, will simply ignore the order - so then what? If this President says no to the order - who's going to make him? The DoJ? Congress? The media sure as hell won't badger him or his appointees.
    I think if Thomas Jefferson were looking down, the author of the Bill of Rights, on whats being proposed here, hed agree with it. He would agree that the First Amendment cannot be absolute. - Chuck Schumer (D). Yet, Madison and Mason wrote the Bill of Rights, according to Sheila Jackson Lee, 400 years ago. Yup, it's a fact.


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    Re: Court orders U.S. to release memo on drones, al-Awlaki killing

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob0627 View Post
    NEW YORK (Reuters) - A federal appeals court ordered the U.S. Department of Justice to turn over key portions of a memorandum justifying the government's targeted killing of people linked to terrorism, including Americans.

    In a case pitting executive power against the public's right to know what its government does, the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals reversed a lower court ruling preserving the secrecy of the legal rationale for the killings, such as the death of U.S. citizen Anwar al-Awlaki in a 2011 drone strike in Yemen.

    Ruling for the New York Times, a unanimous three-judge panel said the government waived its right to secrecy by making repeated public statements justifying targeted killings.

    ... skipping

    "The court reaffirmed a bedrock principle of democracy: The people do not have to accept blindly the government's assurances that it is operating within the bounds of the law; they get to see for themselves the legal justification that the government is working from," McCraw said in a statement.

    ... skipping

    "This is a resounding rejection of the government's effort to use secrecy and selective disclosure to manipulate public opinion about the targeted killing program," ACLU Deputy Legal Director Jameel Jaffer said in a statement.

    The case is New York Times Co et al v. U.S. Department of Justice et al, 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, Nos. 13-422, 13-445.

    Court orders U.S. to release memo on drones, al-Awlaki killing

    Sometimes the judiciary does get it right but I'm sure this will not rise to the level of war crimes as it should.
    I think it would be very interesting to read how the government analyzed targeted killing.

    Why war crimes? Possibly persons should be tried in absentia, but in general I don't really see any way to justify not stopping people from organizing mass murder of citizens and that is, what these targets do.

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    Re: Court orders U.S. to release memo on drones, al-Awlaki killing

    Quote Originally Posted by Ockham View Post
    And what happens if the government decides they don't want to turn this information over because of a DoJ internal investigation (that may or may not actually exist) or possibly a matter of national security. The Judiciary can only get it right if the government entity they are ordering complies. What we've seen so far is this current WH more so than any previous, will simply ignore the order - so then what? If this President says no to the order - who's going to make him? The DoJ? Congress? The media sure as hell won't badger him or his appointees.
    Maybe the police need to be separated from the executive, you mean?

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    Re: Court orders U.S. to release memo on drones, al-Awlaki killing

    Quote Originally Posted by Ockham View Post
    And what happens if the government decides they don't want to turn this information over because of a DoJ internal investigation (that may or may not actually exist) or possibly a matter of national security. The Judiciary can only get it right if the government entity they are ordering complies. What we've seen so far is this current WH more so than any previous, will simply ignore the order - so then what? If this President says no to the order - who's going to make him? The DoJ? Congress? The media sure as hell won't badger him or his appointees.
    The only thing a court can do is charge those who don't comply with contempt of court. Of course the defendants can appeal to a higher court, in this case it may be SCOTUS.

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    Re: Court orders U.S. to release memo on drones, al-Awlaki killing

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob0627 View Post
    N

    Sometimes the judiciary does get it right but I'm sure this will not rise to the level of war crimes as it should.
    Use quotes, please.

    Killing an american citizen without due process certainly is a domestic crime. But I agree, droning enemies (who are not americans) is just war. Id like to know how the executive keeps this secret from the congress.
    Last edited by jonny5; 04-21-14 at 04:56 PM.

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    Re: Court orders U.S. to release memo on drones, al-Awlaki killing

    Quote Originally Posted by Ockham View Post
    And what happens if the government decides they don't want to turn this information over because of a DoJ internal investigation (that may or may not actually exist) or possibly a matter of national security. The Judiciary can only get it right if the government entity they are ordering complies. What we've seen so far is this current WH more so than any previous, will simply ignore the order - so then what? If this President says no to the order - who's going to make him? The DoJ? Congress? The media sure as hell won't badger him or his appointees.
    Congress. Its their job to check the executive.

    The Senate shall have the sole Power to try all Impeachments. When sitting for that Purpose, they shall be on Oath or Affirmation. When the President of the United States is tried, the Chief Justice shall preside: And no Person shall be convicted without the Concurrence of two thirds of the Members present.

    Judgment in Cases of Impeachment shall not extend further than to removal from Office, and disqualification to hold and enjoy any Office of honor, Trust or Profit under the United States: but the Party convicted shall nevertheless be liable and subject to Indictment, Trial, Judgment and Punishment, according to Law.
    Section. 4.

    The President, Vice President and all civil Officers of the United States, shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors.

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    Re: Court orders U.S. to release memo on drones, al-Awlaki killing

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob0627 View Post
    The only thing a court can do is charge those who don't comply with contempt of court. Of course the defendants can appeal to a higher court, in this case it may be SCOTUS.
    And of course that would yield nothing since no one is going to haul to jail Holder or Obama. So there you have it.
    I think if Thomas Jefferson were looking down, the author of the Bill of Rights, on whats being proposed here, hed agree with it. He would agree that the First Amendment cannot be absolute. - Chuck Schumer (D). Yet, Madison and Mason wrote the Bill of Rights, according to Sheila Jackson Lee, 400 years ago. Yup, it's a fact.


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    Re: Court orders U.S. to release memo on drones, al-Awlaki killing

    Quote Originally Posted by jonny5 View Post
    Killing an american citizen without due process certainly is a domestic crime. But I agree, droning enemies is just war. Id like to know how the executive keeps this secret from the congress.
    Using armed drones may be part of war but using them on civilians and/or in countries where there has been no declaration of war is clearly a war crime.

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    Re: Court orders U.S. to release memo on drones, al-Awlaki killing

    Quote Originally Posted by jonny5 View Post
    Congress. Its their job to check the executive.
    The House could impeach but the Senate does not have the votes to convict. Impeachment also takes a toll on the majority party bringing the impeachment to light unless it's a bi-partisan impeachment - in Obama or Holder's case, I would suggest impeachment proceedings regardless of the reason (whether this issue or any other or this compounded with other issues) would be drawn down party lines. Therefore Congress cannot compel a President or Holder to do anything unless there is a majority or better, super majority in the House and Senate of one party, and the President being the opposite party.
    I think if Thomas Jefferson were looking down, the author of the Bill of Rights, on whats being proposed here, hed agree with it. He would agree that the First Amendment cannot be absolute. - Chuck Schumer (D). Yet, Madison and Mason wrote the Bill of Rights, according to Sheila Jackson Lee, 400 years ago. Yup, it's a fact.


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