State Department Gives Legal Rationale For Drone Strikes

Not everything can be rainbows and unicorn poots with the Obama administration. Everyone once in awhile, the people in his administration do something good, as does he himself. Case in point

The Obama administration has for the first time laid out its legal rationale for drone strikes: The State Department’s legal adviser described the reasoning in a major speech to a conference of international lawyers.

Drone attacks have increased dramatically under President Obama, killing suspected terrorists in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia. But the operations are shrouded in secrecy and some international law experts consider them to be illegal assassinations. Until now, the administration has resisted pressure to describe the legal rationale behind the attacks.

So far, the Barry admin has pretty much gone with the “it’s war, you jacka**es,” as they rightly should.

Harold Koh outlined the administration’s thinking in a keynote speech at the American Society of International Lawyers’ annual conference in Washington, D.C.

“The U.S. is in armed conflict with al-Qaida as well as the Taliban and associated forces in response to the horrific acts of 9-11,” he told the crowd of lawyers, “and may use force consistent with its right to self-defense under international law.”

Koh explained that Congress made the conflict official when it passed a law known as the Authorization for the Use of Military Force shortly after the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.

Koh argued that a state engaged in armed conflict or legitimate self defense (such as the U.S., according to Obama administration reasoning) is not required to provide targets with legal process before using lethal force.

Good for him! Good for the Barry admin. Unsurprisingly, some have a problem with this

“It really is stretching beyond what the law permits for this very extreme action -— killing another person without warning -— without a basis of near necessity, simply because of their status” as a member of al-Qaida or a related terrorist group, O’Connell said at the time.

And, of course,

After the speech, ACLU attorney Jameel Jaffer told NPR he’ll file a lawsuit to get the Justice Department document laying out the full legal rationale for these strikes.

“Because we are at war, you jacka*ss!”

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