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John Brennan
The Senate has confirmed the nomination of John Brennan as the new director of the Central Intelligence Agency by a vote of 63-34.

The vote was held up Wednesday by a 13-hour filibuster by Republican Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky asking questions that some critics complained should have been asked by Democrats. Brennan wasn't Paul's specific target:

Throughout the filibuster, Paul said he simply wanted the White House to clarify that it would not use unmanned aerial drones to kill American citizens on U.S. soil — a point he felt the White House hadn’t been clear enough on.

In a letter to Paul sent earlier Thursday afternoon, Attorney General Eric H. Holder gave him his wish.

“It has come to my attention that you have now asked an additional question: ‘Does the President have the authority to use a weaponized drone to kill an American not engaged in combat on American soil?’” Holder wrote. “The answer to that question is no.”

Paul's filibuster was the ninth longest on record, a far cry from the 24-hour, 18-minute effort by Sen. Strom Thurmond against the Civil Rights Act of 1957.

The roll call is here.

1:38 PM PT: President Obama has made a statement on the confirmation.


Originally posted to Meteor Blades on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 12:59 PM PST.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (20+ / 0-)

    Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

    by Meteor Blades on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 12:59:29 PM PST

  •  is this good news or bad news? nt (5+ / 0-)
  •  Another day - another disgrace (15+ / 0-)

    In American politics. Thank you Obama for making a Bush era torture advocate who was unacceptable in 2008 our new CIA director. This is depressing.

    President Obama would have been a republican in the 1980's & 1990's. Go figure.

    by Tool on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 01:03:16 PM PST

  •  Lethal drone strikes are out. (7+ / 0-)

    One small step for the Bill of Rights.


    "Information is power. But like all power there are those who want to keep it for themselves" Aaron Swartz, 1986 - 2013
    TheStarsHollowGazette.com

    by TheMomCat on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 01:03:34 PM PST

    •  I seriously doubt that (8+ / 0-)

      If they can use 'em, they will. They'll just make sure to do it "lawfully".

      Like credit default swaps.

      "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

      by kovie on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 01:07:01 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  It was a welcome, explicit, clear and (0+ / 0-)

      unambiguous answer.

      It ought never to have been necessary to ask the question. This clear answer is welcome mitigation of the black mark against this country, and this administration, that the situation merited the question in the first place.

      •  Hmm (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        3goldens, shaharazade, aliasalias

        They only ruled out using drones.

        The bigger the question is the right to due process. Holder's opinions on that leave a lot to be desired. He still didn't say that the president can't order some one killed on American soil without due process.


        "Information is power. But like all power there are those who want to keep it for themselves" Aaron Swartz, 1986 - 2013
        TheStarsHollowGazette.com

        by TheMomCat on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 01:25:49 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  It's about the right to due process (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Justus

          of non-combatants. Combatants do not have the right to due process, that's a settled debate. If you fire on US Citizens or US Soldiers you prove yourself guilty on the battlefield. Non-combatants on the other hand...that's a tricky question.

          Rand Paul raised some interesting questions:

          Where is the battle space? I think that it's unlawful for the DoD and the executive office to define the battle space as everywhere and unending.

          Who is an enemy non-combatant, and where are they guaranteed the right to due process? By simply talking to militant muslim radicals enough to make you an enemy non-combatant? Are they only guaranteed the right to due process inside the territories of the United States?

          These questions are important questions regardless of drone use. They would be equally important if it were a SEAL team the white house were using every time.

        •  Maybe the Feds (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          TheMomCat, aliasalias

          won't drone you as a terrorist, but there going to be handing them out to the police soon. So watch the skies and don't cause any trouble cause the new ones will apparently be able to inside your house. They will find out if your naughty or nice.

      •  Because people who are willing to encourage (4+ / 0-)

        torture and who condone the killing of Americans via drones would never lie to Congress.

      •  hahaha you've got to be kidding me (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        420 forever, aliasalias, NonnyO

        You could drive a fucking truck (or fly a fleet of drones) through the hole Holder left in that statement.

        “It has come to my attention that you have now asked an additional question: ‘Does the President have the authority to use a weaponized drone to kill an American not engaged in combat on American soil?’” Holder wrote. “The answer to that question is no.”
        Notice the question is not; "Does the president have the authority to used drones against Americans?" or "Does the president have the authority to use drones on American soil?" nor does he elaborate on the "not engaged in combat" portion.

        Instead, he throws out a guarded statement only applying to the wildest scenario imaginable, killing an innocent American with a drone.

        Who the fuck thinks that's actually somethign being debated?

      •  except it only addressed American citizens on (0+ / 0-)

        american soil. What about non-citizens on american soil?

        That quote about GDP by Robert Kennedy

        by erichiro on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 04:59:10 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  With this administration we should take (0+ / 0-)

          what we can get. IPU knows that precious little in the way of defending certain rights or advocating for anything that even vaguely comes close to center-left will come out of this administration. It's too cozy with Republicans.

    •  Well, one right, anyway... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      aliasalias, 420 forever

      I'm not forgetting that there has been no repeal of AUMF, Patriot Act, MCA '06, MCA '09, FISA fiasco '08, or 'office of faith-based initiatives.'

      Keith Olbermann on the Bill of Right! -American's one right

      Keith Olbermann: October 17, 2006

      Keith Olbermann: "Today, 135 years to the day after the last American President (Ulysses S. Grant) suspended habeas corpus, President Bush signed into law the Military Commissions Act of 2006. At its worst, the legislation allows President Bush or Donald Rumsfeld to declare anyone — US citizen or not — an enemy combatant, lock them up and throw away the key without a chance to prove their innocence in a court of law. In other words, every thing the Founding Fathers fought the British empire to free themselves of was reversed and nullified with the stroke of a pen, all under the guise of the War on Terror."

      Jonathan Turley: "People have no idea how significant this is. Really a time of shame this is for the American system.—The strange thing is that we have become sort of constitutional couch potatoes. The Congress just gave the President despotic powers and you could hear the yawn across the country as people turned to Dancing With the Stars. It's otherworldly..People clearly don't realize what a fundamental change it is about who we are as a country. What happened today changed us. And I'm not too sure we're gonna change back anytime soon."

      I'm sick of attempts to steer this nation from principles evolved in The Age of Reason to hallucinations derived from illiterate herdsmen. ~ Crashing Vor

      by NonnyO on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 04:46:54 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  repeal? Hell they've been expanded (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        NonnyO

        Thanks for posting that btw, it deserves to be in a lot of diaries.(not snark)

        without the ants the rainforest dies

        by aliasalias on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 05:13:44 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  :'( Expanded, I know... :'( (2+ / 0-)

          I could weep in frustration about the illegal and unconstitutional things that have been done without our consent.  It's like taxation without representation, but this time it's laws taking our rights away without our consent, and done by our elected representatives, no less.  Don't they realize they're giving up their own rights at the same time?

          When the Senate was 'debating' MCA '06 I was glued to C-SPAN that day, and Leahy and Kennedy brought me to tears arguing against passing the law, and in favor of an amendment that did not take away habeas corpus.  The amendment did not pass, and later that idiotic law passed.  Adding insult to injury was MCA '09 passed under Obama.

          Suggestion: go to the links in the titles of the videos, put them in your Favorites files, and when I'm not around post them (in appropriate diaries about our lost rights and where our lost rights are talked about).  Ditto the Bill Moyers Journal episode for 13 June 2007 where John Nichols talks about that little metaphorical cherry wood box adding and taking away presidential powers.  That was positively prescient.  (The third section of the video for that day was the commentary and does not pertain to the first two sections of the episode.)

          I agree, we need to remember the rights we do not have now, even if we/they act like we still have them.  People forget those illegal and unconstitutional laws have never been repealed, and we should be screaming at out Congress Critters to give us back our rights.

          I'm no longer sure we'll get habeas corpus and/or our unalienable rights back during my lifetime (I'm old).  I want to be wrong in thinking that hunch.  [Oh, please, please, please let me be wrong!]

          {{{Thanks for the thumb's up, aliasalias!}}}

          I'm sick of attempts to steer this nation from principles evolved in The Age of Reason to hallucinations derived from illiterate herdsmen. ~ Crashing Vor

          by NonnyO on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 05:34:42 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  I posted them both on FB just to give perspective (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            NonnyO

            for those that may not be noticing how quickly we are losing rights that weren't easy to get in the first place, how slow people are in realizing it and what it can mean to them and everyone else.
            What's even worse is that in fact we do not know how much we have lost, just ask members of Congress like Sen. Wyden who said the American people would be shocked to know how the Patriot Act is being interpreted by the Obama administration. I think it's safe to guess it isn't in the direction of something good, also because if so it would've been paraded around the media (Lily Ledbetter!).

             Imagine in 2008 Obama saying he supported a CPI for Soc. Security (along with raising the age requirement), the privatization of education (Charter Schools),that he would have a secret Kill List, use indefinite detention,sign off on Drone bombings of weddings, funerals, first responders (and the evil 'double tap' hits which ARE a war crime) ,claim he can kill anyone anywhere for reason that can only be known to him and a few (unelected) people, not only renew but expand the Patriot Act,appoint John Brennan-Bernanke-Geither-Summers etc.,appoint Wall Street people and CEO execs (even as Staff), a 'NAFTA on steroids' negotiated in private (and set for fast track in Congress) and...just too damn many things to list.

            What makes it worse is support from the so-called 'left' many of which screamed about things Bush did but are silent (or worse with loud support) about it when it's Obama doing either the same things or even worse, for example Bush stuck people in GITMO ,Obama just has them blown up (along with others).
             Like the reality of Climate change deniers very few will be exempt from the results of all this and it reminds me of the 60's saying about 'you're either part of the solution or you are part of the problem'.

            There are a lot of bread and circuses out there but as things get worse, and they will because they can't get better by doing the wrong things, people won't be able to afford the distractions which means things are gonna get even worse in the mix between the people and law enforcement. People will literally have nothing left to lose.

            Welcome to the Shock Doctrine....with a smile.

            without the ants the rainforest dies

            by aliasalias on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 08:09:39 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  And I noticed Meteor Blades'... (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              aliasalias

              ... open diary where the headline is about Holder's statement regarding bankers too big to jail.

              Gee, thanks, Bill Clinton, for removing all regulations for banks with the 1999 signing of Gramm-Leach-Bliley which repealed Glass-Steagall and its regulations....  [Not!]

              I do hope the realization of what we have lost hits someone soon so someone with cooler heads can start repealing all the bad legislation passed during the Bushista years (and added to in the Obama years).

              I fear too many are too concerned with Reality TV to pay attention.

              It's just incredibly sad, sad, sad....

              ;'(

              I'm sick of attempts to steer this nation from principles evolved in The Age of Reason to hallucinations derived from illiterate herdsmen. ~ Crashing Vor

              by NonnyO on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 12:27:05 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

  •  Not sure if the Livestrong bracelet (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TheMomCat, Shahryar, ukit, shaharazade

    was the most effective way to signal his intention to be an honest and open director. Does the CIA intend to use doping to infiltrate the Global Cycling Terrorism Network, otherwise known as Al Rida RunRedLita?

    "Liberty without virtue would be no blessing to us" - Benjamin Rush, 1777

    by kovie on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 01:03:51 PM PST

  •  I long for the days (0+ / 0-)

    when Julia and Paul Child were members of the OSS.  Simpler times before the CIA became comparable to the scary monster under the bed for me.

    I guess it makes no difference who is in charge -- as long as it isn't Dick Cheney.

    " My faith in the Constitution is whole; it is complete; it is total." Barbara Jordan, 1974

    by gchaucer2 on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 01:06:05 PM PST

  •  I have a question. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    cherish0708

    Since when is it acceptable practice to demand concessions from the White House to perform a congressional approval of a candidate to a cabinet post?

    The issues were totally and completely unrelated, yet the rules of order allow for this type of...insanity?  I realize someone can filibuster by reading Ayn Rand, or a phone book, or repetitively reading a chinese takeout menu, but to actually make demands?

    This is what I mean when I say the Republicans are domestic terrorists.

    Yes, I'm very leery about Brennan as CIA Director, but the real terror here, in my opinion, is how Senate (R)s are wielding the filibuster like a cudgel simply to force PBO into yet another compromise.

    Anyone else think it's time we instituted a vote of no confidence of our own?  Occupy:  Capitol Hill?

    "Never argue with an idiot. They will drag you down to their level, and beat you with experience every time." --Unknown

    by Subwoofer of the House on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 01:07:31 PM PST

    •  CIA Director and spy drones are not related? (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      corvo, squarewheel, NonnyO, aliasalias

      Who do you think operates a good number of these drones?

      Oh.. wait.. The CIA says they don't have any drones?  Oh..ok.. wink wink

      •  No, that's not what I said (0+ / 0-)

        The demand from the White House on answers to that question were entirely unrelated to the capability of Brennan of carrying out the duties of Director of the CIA.

        I would understand if they demanded answers from Brennan concerning this issue, but the White House?

        Next, we'll have the appointment of the Surgeon General held up while they demand PBO send them a few dozen pizzas.

        "Never argue with an idiot. They will drag you down to their level, and beat you with experience every time." --Unknown

        by Subwoofer of the House on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 01:46:41 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  But they did ask Brennan (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          aliasalias, NonnyO

          and he responded there is no geographical limitation to killing with drones - implying that it is within their power to kill with drones on American soil.

          Rand Paul wanted the White House and DoJ to confirm or deny that is their policy as well.  They wouldn't respond until today.

          •  Not with respect to CIA, (0+ / 0-)

            by statute.  They also responded two days ago, but Rand Paul saw an opportunity to grandstand.  Today's response was pithier, but didn't actually differ from the previous letter - it just framed the question differently.

            Difficult, difficult, lemon difficult.

            by Loge on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 02:22:19 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

  •  A day (5+ / 0-)

    Well this marks the first time in at least 13 years that I agree with anything a Republican has done.  And it's Rand Paul no less.  

    So ... Yea.

  •  Yeah, great... (6+ / 0-)

    another CIA director in the mold of whatzis-name Dulles (which ever one ran the CIA, I forget) who thought it was his own personal fiefdom to hunt down Reds'n'stuff, experiment on people and all sorts of extra-fun shit like that including toppling Democracy's he didn't much care for.

    Brennan can't even lie with a straight face, much less tell the truth.  He's a consummate insider in DC and is going to ensure that whatever he does is covered up and all the bodies will be buried somewhere next to Jimmy Hoffa's.  

    Seemingly this country has forgotten (if it ever learned them) the lessons of Watergate, about secrecy, lying and deceit.  It seemed like once upon a time we were on the way to being a better nation and now lookkee..we have John fucking Brennan running the most unaccountable organization outside the NSA.  

    We're so fucked. Thanks, BHO for this one.  It's only your legacy after all.

    A celibate clergy is an especially good idea, because it tends to suppress any hereditary propensity toward fanaticism. -Carl Sagan

    by jo fish on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 01:08:38 PM PST

  •  DRONES... were used by BUSH..no complaints. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Brown Thrasher, MichaelPH

    I saw first complaints here by Anarchists of OCCUPY supporting tweets from AlQaeda types in Pakistan, Yemen etc.

    They are emminently effective. I would like military only to be using, but there are already hundreds surveiling our borders now.

    Proud to be part of the 21st Century Democratic Majority Party of the 3M's.. Multiracial,Multigender and MiddleClass

    by LOrion on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 01:09:56 PM PST

  •  Finally, Holder answers a clear question, clearly. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Quicklund

    Apart from Brennan, about whom there is strong disagreement - and rightfully so! - Holder's is the correct and sensible answer.

    Where were the Republicans asking such questions during debates and oversight on the Patriot Act? Er, ... during debates. Er, ... what passed for debates. Time after time.

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

    by TRPChicago on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 01:11:10 PM PST

    •  No. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      420 forever, johanus, aliasalias

      The president having the authority to kill innocent Americans with drones (the scenario offered in Holders letter) has never been an area of legitimate debate.

      The questions that are actually of importance are:

      Does the President have the authority to kill US citizens (regardless of location or method) without a trial?

      Does the President have the authority to use weaponized drones within the US?

      What determines whether a US citizen is engaged in combat?

      •  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 ]

  •  Holder is a loser! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    NonnyO

    The fact that R Paul could put together a filibusterer (that I, a radical leftest support) is a total failure of the Obama administration.

    WTF is going on here--no drones over US territory.  This is really creepy.

    The plural of anecdote is NOT data

    by Dr Arcadia on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 01:12:24 PM PST

    •  You really think drones are going away? (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cherish0708, johanus, WakeUpNeo

      There are cameras everywhere now but for some reason cameras that fly are going away? I could build a drone myself if I put my mind, checkbook, and internet shopping to it. The technology is here and it is not going away.

      Trying to prohibit "drones" is not a progressive thing, it is an impossible thing. The progressive thing to do is to well-regulate their use just like other facts of life.

  •  Y'all will all be sorry (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    corvo

    When the Cubans and Soviets invade Colorado, like they did in 'Red Dawn," you'll all wish the Wolverines were authorized to use weaponized drones.

  •  "Not engaged in combat" (4+ / 0-)

    And we decide what combat means.

    •  it means you are dead & of military age (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      NonnyO

      and that is the current definition in all the Countries where we're blowing up people.
      But! if we have the same rights as a goat herder in Pakistan that means with proof a person can be posthumously found innocent.
      You can't do that prior to getting bombed because you will not know if you are on the Kill List, it's secret, and besides that you can't ask because then it wouldn't be a secret.
      Don't ya just love that respect for the law?

      without the ants the rainforest dies

      by aliasalias on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 04:39:38 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  They said Rand was "droning on and on." (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    corvo, Brown Thrasher, aliasalias

    Boo. Hiss.

    Throughout the filibuster, Paul said he simply wanted the White House to clarify that it would not use unmanned aerial drones to kill American citizens on U.S. soil...
    Now in all seriousness, regardless of the merit of Paul's inquiry, I find it disturbing that we live in this unmanned aerial drone era, where an issue that we should be able to dismiss as unthinkable ends up aired on the floor of the Senate for 13 hours.  

    "Nach dem Spiel ist vor dem Spiel." -Sepp Herberger

    by surfbird007 on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 01:14:11 PM PST

  •  "not engaged in combat"? (4+ / 0-)

    there you have it.

    As long as Holder, or some future Yoo, doesn't redefine "combat" to include some kind of cyberwarfare, etc.  then it's all good.

    The whole drone policy is a foul stain on our national integrity.

    Obama is no different, and in many ways much worse than the Bush junta when it comes to twisting legal logic to justify illegal war crime activity.

    This appointment is another example of how wrong is the norm.

    We have always been at war with Eastasia!!

    Ignorance is Strength!

  •  The Drone Program Didn't Start W/ Obama, Ya Know (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Shahryar

    Where were all the filibusters by Republicans when George Bush was using drones?  Where were all the questions by Republicans about drone use from 2000 to 2008?  Not a peep, not a murmur, not a single filibuster, eh?

    During last night's stunt, the junior Senator from Texas, Ted Cruz, actually read passages from Ayn Rand.  A few weeks ago this same junior senator was accusing Chuck Hagel of taking money from North Korea & Saudi Arabia.  

    And Mr Filibuster, Rand Paul, just appeared on conservative talk show host Hugh Hewitt's radio program stating he heard that Chuck Hagel was associated w/ "Friends of Hamas".  He heard a report somewhere he said.

    He read it on Brietbart.com.  It was a made up joke & Rand Paul went w/ it, flew w/ it & believed it.  

    Why should I give Rand Paul credibility?  

  •  I loved Alice in Wonderland and was hoping he'd (0+ / 0-)

    give Dicken's a try, or perhaps a little Winnie the Pooh!

    Women are 51% of the population yet are represented in congress by barely 17%! Until our representation reflects the population, we risk sliding backwards .....

    by 51percent on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 01:22:38 PM PST

  •  Are people here just as afraid of a missile droppi (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Brown Thrasher

    ng on them from Obama as they are a drone?, if not, why not?

  •  Obama adds insult to injury: (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TheMomCat, Willa Rogers, aliasalias
    With the bipartisan confirmation of John Brennan as Director of the Central Intelligence Agency, the Senate has recognized in John the qualities I value so much—his determination to keep America safe, his commitment to working with Congress,  his ability to build relationships with foreign partners, and his fidelity to the values that define us as a nation.  
    Full statement here

    “In the beginning there was nothing, which exploded.” Terry Pratchett

    by 420 forever on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 01:30:36 PM PST

    •  Hey, ask any Native American (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      420 forever, aliasalias

      about the values that define us as a nation.

      Dogs from the street can have all the desirable qualities that one could want from pet dogs. Most adopted stray dogs are usually humble and exceptionally faithful to their owners as if they are grateful for this kindness. -- H.M. Bhumibol Adulyadej

      by corvo on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 01:45:59 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  The issue is targeted killing. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    TheMomCat, corvo, aliasalias

    What a Targeted Killing in the US Would Look Like
    By: emptywheel
    Tuesday February 19, 2013 1:03 pm

    The arrest was staged at a warehouse controlled by the FBI, outfitted with 5 closed circuit video cameras that gave the FBI full visibility into anyone entering and leaving the warehouse, as well as pallets loaded with sandbags to provide cover. Altogether 66 FBI Agents participated in the arrest, with 29 Agents, including a K-9 team and snipers, inside the warehouse itself, along with helicopter cover, another K-9 team, and a control room nearby. Members of the FBI’s Hostage Rescue and SWAT teams participated, with Agents flying in from Columbia, South Carolina and DC via a previous operation in Los Angeles. The team had practiced the arrest scenario up to 10 times before the actual arrest.

    The arrest started when the FBI detonated 3 pre-positioned diversionary explosives in the room in which the leader, 4 accomplices, two undercover officers and an informant had been moving boxes (the FBI insiders had already left the scene). That allowed the FBI team, wearing bullet proof gear and helmets, to move into place.

    On orders, “FBI, show me your hands, on the ground!” the leader’s four accomplices put their hands up and got down on the ground (for a variety of reasons, the FBI doesn’t have recordings of the audio of the event). The leader hesitated, but then got face down on the ground, though the FBI claims his hands were not visible.

    At that point, 62 seconds after the diversionary explosions, the K-9 handler, who had been briefed that the leader was the main target of the investigation, released the dog and gave the “bite” command, the first time he had ever done so in the year he had been a K-9 handler; the dog lunged at the leader’s arm or face. The FBI claims the leader raised a gun and shot the dog three times. One accomplice disagrees, describing that the leader had both hands on the dog, trying to keep him away from his face. Two FBI Agents who admitted shooting their rifles also had Glocks, though of a different caliber than the one allegedly used by the leader. There was no gunpowder residue found on the leader and no fingerprints found on the Glock.

    In the next 4 seconds, 4 different FBI officers shot the leader with their Colt M4 rifles (3 were from the Hostage Rescue Team that had flown in for this arrest), set on semiautomatic. He was hit a total of 21 times. He died within a minute.

    This was the culmination of a 3-year counterterrorism investigation into Imam Luqman Abdullah, a black Muslim who led a mosque in Detroit.

    Warning: Several minutes into this video (included at the link), graphic images of a corpse appear. Also, the government may start tracking your online viewing if you view this YouTube, as someone started following my mostly defunct YouTube account after I watched it.

    Perhaps you think Marcy Wheeler is a disreputable source.
  •   every Oabma a nomination is a melodrama (0+ / 0-)
  •  MB, any chance you can post the breakdown (0+ / 0-)

    of the vote? I'd like to know which Democrats voted aye.

    “In the beginning there was nothing, which exploded.” Terry Pratchett

    by 420 forever on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 01:33:48 PM PST

    •  All except Leahy, Merkley, Sanders (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      420 forever, Loge
      •  Thanks - what a disgrace. nt (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        corvo

        “In the beginning there was nothing, which exploded.” Terry Pratchett

        by 420 forever on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 01:35:45 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  You do realize Brennan is a progressive on the (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Loge

          drone issue right? he personally was not the issue, the issue was legal opinions.

          •  Brennan endorsed Bush's torture and rendition (5+ / 0-)

            program. That's all I need to know about him.

            “In the beginning there was nothing, which exploded.” Terry Pratchett

            by 420 forever on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 01:41:53 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  But can't comment (4+ / 0-)

            whether waterboarding is torture because he's "not a lawyer." You are aware that he withdrew himself from consideration in 2009 because of his possible involvement in ordering waterboarding that has never been fully invesitgated.


            "Information is power. But like all power there are those who want to keep it for themselves" Aaron Swartz, 1986 - 2013
            TheStarsHollowGazette.com

            by TheMomCat on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 01:44:58 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  He's not for waterboarding, that's what matters (0+ / 0-)
              •  asdf (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Meteor Blades, TheMomCat, aliasalias
                Mr. BRENNAN: Well, the CIA has acknowledged that it has detained about 100 terrorists since 9/11, and about a third of them have been subjected to what the CIA refers to as enhanced interrogation tactics, and only a small proportion of those have in fact been subjected to the most serious types of enhanced procedures.

                SMITH: Right. And you say some of this has born fruit.

                Mr. BRENNAN: There have been a lot of information that has come out from these interrogation procedures that the agency has in fact used against the real hard-core terrorists. It has saved lives. And let’s not forget, these are hardened terrorists who have been responsible for 9/11, who have shown no remorse at all for the deaths of 3,000 innocents.

                Linky

                “In the beginning there was nothing, which exploded.” Terry Pratchett

                by 420 forever on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 01:53:11 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  It's more like a Venn diagram (0+ / 0-)

                  not all forms of torture imaginable were "enhanced interrogation," and not all "enhanced interrogation" is torture.  

                  From the same link, "Brennan did say that one particular technique, waterboarding, "is certainly subjecting an individual to severe pain and suffering, which is the classic definition of torture. And I believe, quite frankly, it's inconsistent with American values and it's something that should be prohibited."

                  It's not clear whether he's claiming waterboarding (or other things that would qualify as torture) produced useful information, but he's also saying it wouldn't matter.

                  Difficult, difficult, lemon difficult.

                  by Loge on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 02:30:49 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

              •  How do you know (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                aliasalias

                he didn't approve it? That is a war crime. There are no statute of limitation on war crimes.


                "Information is power. But like all power there are those who want to keep it for themselves" Aaron Swartz, 1986 - 2013
                TheStarsHollowGazette.com

                by TheMomCat on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 02:45:35 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

    •  Roll call is online (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      420 forever, Loge, Meteor Blades, NonnyO

      here.

    •  here are the 'nays' and it's some sorry company (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      NonnyO, 420 forever

      Ayotte (R-NH)
      Barrasso (R-WY)
      Blunt (R-MO)
      Boozman (R-AR)
      Chambliss (R-GA)
      Cochran (R-MS)
      Cornyn (R-TX)
      Crapo (R-ID)
      Cruz (R-TX)
      Enzi (R-WY)
      Fischer (R-NE)
      Grassley (R-IA)    Heller (R-NV)
      Hoeven (R-ND)
      Inhofe (R-OK)
      Isakson (R-GA)
      Johanns (R-NE)
      Johnson (R-WI)
      Leahy (D-VT)
      Lee (R-UT)
      McConnell (R-KY)
      Merkley (D-OR)
      Moran (R-KS)
      Paul (R-KY)    Portman (R-OH)
      Risch (R-ID)
      Roberts (R-KS)
      Sanders (I-VT)
      Scott (R-SC)
      Sessions (R-AL)
      Shelby (R-AL)
      Thune (R-SD)
      Toomey (R-PA)
      Wicker (R-MS)

      without the ants the rainforest dies

      by aliasalias on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 04:56:48 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Trust Bernie Sanders... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        420 forever, aliasalias

        ... to vote with We The People...!  Often Patrick Leahy does, too, but sometimes he disappoints.  I don't know anything about Merkley.

        Giving props to Paul yesterday dang near made me apoplectic since I vehemently disagree with pretty much everything that comes out of his mouth otherwise; sad day to know a Repuke can do something Dems should have been doing all along for other things that mattered as much - a nice, old-fashioned filibuster, not the usual passive filibuster in which Repukes engage.

        Thanks, aliasalias.

        [Both my Dem senators voted in favor of Brennan.  I have to compose an email telling them how disappointed I am in them.  Ugh.]

        I'm sick of attempts to steer this nation from principles evolved in The Age of Reason to hallucinations derived from illiterate herdsmen. ~ Crashing Vor

        by NonnyO on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 05:44:30 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  yeah my Sens both Murray & Cantwell voted YES (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          NonnyO

          for the Assassination Czar, Patty Murray's vote didn't surprise me and this former Chair of the Super Cat Food Committee Chair will be right in line with signing on to Obama's grand swindle aka Grand Bargain when enuf pain has been inflicted to make it happen
          Maybe if they get too much flack like the CPI ( now its the Superlative CPI -no joke) it'll get renamed the Superlative Grand Bargain.
          No change just different words,which sounds all too familiar.

          without the ants the rainforest dies

          by aliasalias on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 08:21:35 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  Senator Rand Paul Second Letter from Holder (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ek hornbeck


    "Information is power. But like all power there are those who want to keep it for themselves" Aaron Swartz, 1986 - 2013
    TheStarsHollowGazette.com

    by TheMomCat on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 01:40:14 PM PST

  •  if only buhdydharma were here -- (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ek hornbeck

    he'd tell us all to "CLAP LOUDER!!!" . . .

    Dogs from the street can have all the desirable qualities that one could want from pet dogs. Most adopted stray dogs are usually humble and exceptionally faithful to their owners as if they are grateful for this kindness. -- H.M. Bhumibol Adulyadej

    by corvo on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 01:47:45 PM PST

  •  Sad day for civil rights. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    420 forever, NonnyO, aliasalias

    Senator Paul's valiant effort to derail John Brennan's appointment is very much admired and appreciated.  Not so much for the Democrats (save Senator Wyden) who refused to stand-up in defense of what's left of civil rights.  Shame on them, and the president.

    "The highest patriotism is not a blind acceptance of official policy, but a love of one's country deep enough to call her to a higher plain." --George McGovern

    by Progressive Pride on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 01:55:44 PM PST

  •  Is there a "clean" person to run the CIA? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    NonnyO

    really, the CIA is an extra-judicial agency that does what it wants and tells no one and almost none of what they do could be considered legal or ethical.

  •  Although this ain't my country.. (0+ / 0-)

    I do live here, and just looking at this chap makes me feel I would rather have him on our side than not.
    Talk about menacing looking.

    Jeeez

    peace

    keith

    "Love is what we were born with. Fear is what we learned here." Marianne Williamson

    by Canadian Green Card Alien on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 02:36:09 PM PST

  •  "Not engaged in combat" (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    aliasalias

    So is are Occupy protesters in the act of being pepper-sprayed "engaged in combat" under the terms of the "Global War on Terror"? If a large crowd of people protest in the financial district of a city, and the mayor of that city has mobilized the police to disperse them, are they "engaged in combat"?

    I'll bet that if the legal answer is not yet "yes", in a few years it will be. You no longer have to be military personnel of a foreign government to be "engaged in combat" against the United States. You only have to be opposed to "American Interests" (such as taking the oil). Those who disrupt the financial activities of American cities are (clearly!) opposed to "American Interests" and hence could be enemy combatants under the WoT rules. Likewise those disrupting the construction of oil pipelines, etc.

    •  Stop being paranoid, OWS is not considered 'combat (0+ / 0-)

      ' by anybody.

      •  the FBI labeled them as 'terrorists' (0+ / 0-)

        Here's just one of many links about it...http://news.yahoo.com/...

        Now that it's been over a year since the Occupy movement swept across the country, FOIA requests are being fulfilled, revealing uncomfortable details about how authorities viewed the protestors. One such request by the Partnership for Civil Justice came through this weekend, and the 112 heavily redacted pages reveal that the FBI approached the Occupy Wall Street protests as "criminal activity" -- which is not terribly surprising -- and investigated the groups as perpetrators of "domestic terrorism" -- which is fairly unsettling. More specifically, the Feds enlisted its own as well as local terrorism task forces in nine different cities across the country to investigate Occupy.
        (emphasis mine)

        without the ants the rainforest dies

        by aliasalias on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 05:08:38 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  That's because they were easily shooed away (0+ / 0-)

        with tear gas and horses. But if an Occupy movement should appear that is more resistant to police power, they would be deemed "combatants" very quickly.

  •  All that GOP palaver FOR NOTHING!!!! (0+ / 0-)

    Remember this when GOP/TPers whine on and on about wasted money.

    Rand Paul is an idiot. And McCain and Graham said as much.

    There. I said it.

    Ugh. --UB.

    "Daddy, every time a bell rings, a Libertaria­n picks up his Pan Am tickets for the Libertaria­n Paradise of East Somalia!"

    by unclebucky on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 02:40:59 PM PST

  •  What a difference four years makes. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    420 forever, aliasalias, NonnyO

    Apparently he's no longer too toxic to nominate. Seems like a step backward to me.

    "The Democratic Party is not our friend: it is the only party we can negotiate with."

    by 2020adam on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 03:04:30 PM PST

  •  Hope and change! (0+ / 0-)

    My brother in law mocked me today "They told me if I voted for Romney the CIA head would approve torture and drone secret drones killing Americans. And they were right".

  •  How did Rand Paul ever become an MD? He has (0+ / 0-)

    one of the most sub-standard intellects ever to be elected to high office. Ok, there's W and Palin, too. But, then Rand is right up there with them. He doesn't understand the most basic things he's talking about, and seems to prefer internet conspiracy theories to research.

    Just doing my part to piss off right wing nuts, one smart ass comment at a time.

    by tekno2600 on Thu Mar 07, 2013 at 07:29:29 PM PST

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