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View Diary: Senate confirms John Brennan as new CIA director (146 comments)

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  •  The best questions raise other questions. (0+ / 0-)

    Up front, are you saying "No" to AG Holder's answer? Or to my comment about Brennan?

    I had understood Holder to be answering the very question Rand Paul was asking. That's why the AG could give him that crisp an answer. With the certainty of the word "innocent" and I agree, it is not even a challenging question. I do not respect Rand Paul much, but he is a US Senator and the Senate floor is a place for "legitimate debate."

    To your questions, in order:

    1. Does the President have the authority to kill US citizens (regardless of location or method) without a trial? How does the President become certain that a US citizen is not among a group of enemy combatants abroad? If he thinks there might be, would he have to give all the combats a "trial" or single out the American and kill the others? (To pinpoint the issue, assume the group is shooting at US troops.) MY ANSWER: I think he cannot be certain. Working with my assumption, he need not be.

    2. Does the President have the authority to use weaponized drones within the US? What is the difference between using a "weaponized drone" and, say, a mortar shot into a compound? And, would your question be any different if the official at issue was not the President but, say, a chief law enforcement officer in consultation with a prosecutor and maybe the governor? MY ANSWER: Drones are scarifying, but so are other weapons. I don't think the important issue hangs on drones or the President.

    3. What determines whether a US citizen is engaged in combat? The assumption in #1 above certainly seems like one instance.  MY ANSWER: There would be many instances, but it's your turn.

    (I don't mean to be flip. I do mean to make your questions more precise, thereby to seek answers that are as sensible as you and I can make them.)

    2014 IS COMING. Build up the Senate. Win back the House : 17 seats. Plus!

    by TRPChicago on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 02:42:05 PM PST

    [ Parent ]

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