Wednesday, November 16, 2011

All linkey...

I sometimes get to feeling like all I do on this blog is quote Blunt Object, but come the hell on--this stuff is gold:

Okay, just informally, let’s have a show of hands: who thinks it’s a great idea that the Executive has

"...the power to target — in total secrecy and with no checks or due process — their fellow citizens for execution: specifically, assassination-by-CIA
and likes to use it?"

Mainstream progressive think-tank the Center for American Progress? Nice of you to stand up and be counted. Yes, I know; targeted killing without due process would be evil awful bad no-good totally wrong if Dubya was still in office, but like Communism it works if only the right people can be put in charge.

Republican Presidential nomination slate at the foreign policy debate? Well of course, all y’all probably creamed your pant-oh, Ron Paul, you’re such a kidder!

"It took Ron Paul — whom every Good Progressive will tell you is Completely Crazy and Insane — to point out to the GOP the rather glaring inconsistency between, on the one hand, distrusting government authorities to run health care, but on the other, wanting to empower the President to kill whomever he wants with no transparency or due process."

Seriously now, Dr. Paul, let’s get with the program of killing brown guys with scary ay-rab sounding names. No? Where’s your bipartisanship, Dr. Paul? Don’t you want to reach across the aisle to those CAP folks and show America that the Party of Lincoln is ready to compromise on important foreign-policy issues?

To be fair, I think we need a reevaluation of the legitimate rules of engagement in a world where warfare has changed to the point of being unrecognizable to, say, the participants in the Hague convention. But in the absence of an explicit consensus on those rules of engagement, I'm very reluctant to accept "the President can just kill folks he thinks need killing" as a substitute, and certainly not in total secrecy with no obligation to provide any evidence that the target is a legitimate one.


  1. Thanks for the link(s)!

    I agree with you on the need for a new set of ROE to cover non-state actors. (While we're at it, can we get rid of the insulting and obtuse "No you can't has a hollowpoints, not yours" crap?) But as I understand it, the al-Awlaki killings weren't covered under the rubric of "war" -- they were flat-out star chamber assassinations straight from the Executive.

  2. ..And without even the courtesy of issuing a letter of marque and reprisal.