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View Diary: Was Al-Awlaki A Citizen When He Was Killed? (130 comments)

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  •  Due Process? (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    skrekk, Paul1a, ParaHammer, diffrntdrummr

    He forfeited that when he went to war against the country.

    ...the GOP seems perfectly willing to hold their breath until the whole country turns Blue.

    by tommy2tone on Sat Mar 09, 2013 at 08:38:19 PM PST

    [ Parent ]

    •  nope (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      chuckvw, Sparhawk, Bisbonian, OldSoldier99

      as a citizen, he should have gotten due process - he was NOT in a foreign military organization, and there's very little evidence that he did anything other than make speeches.

      (Is it time for the pitchforks and torches yet?)

      by PJEvans on Sat Mar 09, 2013 at 08:47:03 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  There is lots of evidence (4+ / 0-)

        that al-Awlaki was connected to several global terrorist plots.

        Wikipedia is a good place to start.

        •  Do Plots Nullify Citizenship? (7+ / 0-)

          Terrorists don't threaten nations, states, counties or cities. They threaten individuals, vehicles and buildings. They're criminals. Capone was a criminal not the USS fucking R.

          We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

          by Gooserock on Sat Mar 09, 2013 at 08:51:07 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I did not claim (4+ / 0-)

            that plots nullify citizenship.  I'm pretty sure the answer to that is no.

            But there seems to be this idea out there that al-Awlaki was merely a guy speaking out against American imperialism, when that couldn't be further from the truth.

          •  in today's world organizations = countries (0+ / 0-)

            it seems, even organizations that are relatively impotent.  al Qaeda struck its greatest and most telling blow on 9/11 but also blew its wad as analysis reveals, instead of grunts, the plot involved the brightest and best or the next generation of al Qaeda leaders.  Since 9/11, al Qaeda has not been able to mount any sort of credible threat to the US.

            However, even from the grave, I would argue that bin Laden continues to win the struggle as his actions have transformed our society into something it never would have been otherwise  

          •  A nation is comprised of citizens (0+ / 0-)

            The way to threaten a nation is through its citizens.

        •  who put it in (0+ / 0-)

          Wikipedia? do you trust them on this? do you trust the usual unnamed government officials?

          (Is it time for the pitchforks and torches yet?)

          by PJEvans on Sat Mar 09, 2013 at 08:55:33 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  Were there 2 witnesses to the same overt act... (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Sparhawk, Bisbonian

          ...or a confession in open court? Because that's the standard for convicting someone for treason, last time I checked Article III, §3. And it sure sounds like that's what he was being accused of when we targeted him for extrajudicial execution.

          "Speaking for myself only" - Armando

          by JR on Sat Mar 09, 2013 at 09:30:10 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Did not even claim that. (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Bronx59, BvueDem

            I was responding only to the claim that al-Awlaki didn't do anything but give speeches.

          •  Red Herring. Not charged with Treason. (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            BvueDem, Dr Swig Mcjigger
            •  "A rose by any other name..." (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              denise b

              First, he wasn't charged with anything when the President put him on a kill list and signed a standing kill order.

              Second, dress it up how you like, he was accused of making war against the United States. That was the justification behind his assassination. The reason the definition of what constitutes treason is right there in the Constitution is to prevent some administration or Congress from claiming that they're not actually claiming someone committed treason per se, but some new, inventive crime.

              Let's call it "unmutuality." (I love "The Prisoner.")

              Let's assume that, one day, the federal government declared the crime of "unmutuality" would consist of the same elements as treason, but, since it isn't treason ("it's unmutuality!") they could punish entire families (or, in constitutional terms, "work corruption of blood"). After all, that punishment is specifically banned for treason, but not for unmutuality. So what's the problem?

              Trying to weasel out of observing the Constitution isn't cool. Especially when the goal is to be able to extrajudicially kill citizens.

              "Speaking for myself only" - Armando

              by JR on Sun Mar 10, 2013 at 09:13:15 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

      •  It's actually true (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        diffrntdrummr, BvueDem

        read the 5th Amendment:

        No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.
        If you go to war against the country, it does not have to provide you due process.

        And there is not one word about citizenship in there.  This applies to all persons equally.

        Now one can make the argument he was not in "service".  But citizenship has nothing to do with that argument.

        •  That exception applies to active duty military (0+ / 0-)

          during wartime.

          Otherwise,

          No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, [except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger] . . .
          Read more carefully.  Try again.
          •  I don't think an al-Awlaki crime is diary issue (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            BvueDem, Dr Swig Mcjigger

            I'm not at all sure what I think of the OP's argument, but the refutations along these lines aren't going to work. As I understand it, the killing of al-Awlaki is not an execution related to a crime for which he was unconstitutionally convicted, any more than criminal justice is implicated in the battlefield deaths of a few US Citizens who fought on the Axis side in WW2 (generally, because they were in the wrong place at the wrong time and got drafted in enemy armies).

            Nor am I impressed with claims he only made speeches and plots. Rear echelon guys are perfectly valid targets.

            What I do wonder about is whether he was a member of a foreign military organization at all, whether Al Qaeda minus an active operational wing qualifies. And, far from proceeding in secret, I think US Citizens who want to take their chances in a treason or terrorism trial should be identified and given a chance to surrender.

    •  There's a Treason Clause in the Constitution... (5+ / 0-)

      ...that covers exactly that instance.

      Your argument is invalid.

      "Speaking for myself only" - Armando

      by JR on Sat Mar 09, 2013 at 08:53:05 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  historical note: only Confederate executed was (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Bisbonian

      commander of Andersonville by the name of Wirtz if memory serves.  Instead of summary execution, he was given a military court martial as were other Confederate leaders.  It seems that this standard has been abandoned

      •  This example doesn't shed much light (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        fou, BvueDem

        on Al-Awlaki's situation.  Wirtz (?) must have been prosecuted AFTER the war was over, not while the Confederacy was involved in active combat.  He was also a U.S. citizen on U.S. territory.  So he would have had due process rights.  Al-Awlaki was outside the U.S. and his claim on citizenship appears to have been tenuous at best.  So from a legal standpoint these aren't similar situations.  

      •  Tens of thousands KILLED in battle w/o trial (4+ / 0-)

        Here is the standard: If you are at war with the United States, you will be on the receiving end of incoming lethal force.

        This was true in the Civil war, as in every war.

        •  but WWII was our last war (0+ / 0-)

          everything since has been a "police action" so it really seems we should send in cops and not troops.  
          BTW are we currently at war with China since it appears they have mounted cyber attacks on various US companies or are we at war with Iran since we have mounted cyber attacks on their defense computer networks.

          Defining war in this day and age tends to get messy

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