Patterico's Pontifications

3/11/2013

NYT: Obama First to Deliberately Kill American Citizen Without Trial Since the Civil War

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:50 am

And Obama didn’t just kill one American citizen, but three! But one of those was unintended collateral damage and one was a complete mistake. So he’s got that going for him.

But Lindsey Graham wants to know why we didn’t ask these questions about Boooooooooooooosh!

This New York Times article about the killing of Anwar al-Awlaki, which was published over the weekend, is well worth your time. Many of the facts outlined in the article are no surprise to people who have followed these issues closely — but there are those (including me) who are busy in their lives and can learn a lot from this informative piece. For those of you who aren’t going to read the whole thing, I’ll summarize the parts that captured my attention.

First, there is the point made in the headline of this post. Remember how Lindsey Graham chided his Republican colleagues for supporting Rand Paul?

To my Republican colleagues: I don’t remember any of you comin’ down here suggesting that President Bush was going to kill anybody with a drone. I don’t even remember the harshest critics of President Bush on the Democratic side. They had a drone program then. So what is it all of a sudden that has this drone program has gotten every Republican so spun up? What are we up to here?

The New York Times article answers that question, and here is a big part of the answer: President Bush never deliberately killed an American as an enemy combatant without trial.

It was the culmination of years of painstaking intelligence work, intense deliberation by lawyers working for President Obama and turf fights between the Pentagon and the C.I.A., whose parallel drone wars converged on the killing grounds of Yemen. For what was apparently the first time since the Civil War, the United States government had carried out the deliberate killing of an American citizen as a wartime enemy and without a trial.

Another fun part of the article was the discussion about Marty Lederman’s participation in the justification for killing an American. Those of you who followed blogs about these issues during the Bush years will remember Lederman as one of the harsher critics of Bush’s assertion of executive powers. He was brought into the Office of Legal Counsel as a symbol from Obama that Things Would Be Different — and all of a sudden he was drafting memos saying sure, you can kill an American citizen without trial.

But my favorite part is where his Careful Research was (temporarily) undercut by something he read . . . on a legal blog:

And while the Constitution generally requires judicial process before the government may kill an American, the Supreme Court has held that in some contexts — like when the police, in order to protect innocent bystanders, ram a car to stop a high-speed chase — no prior permission from a judge is necessary; the lawyers concluded that the wartime threat posed by Mr. Awlaki qualified as such a context, and so his constitutional rights did not bar the government from killing him without a trial.

But as months passed, Mr. Barron and Mr. Lederman grew uneasy. They told colleagues there were issues they had not adequately addressed, particularly after reading a legal blog that focused on a statute that bars Americans from killing other Americans overseas. In light of the gravity of the question and with more time, they began drafting a second, more comprehensive memo, expanding and refining their legal analysis and, in an unusual step, researching and citing dense thickets of intelligence reports supporting the premise that Mr. Awlaki was plotting attacks.

Their labors played out against the backdrop of how some of their predecessors under President George W. Bush had become defined by their once-secret memos asserting a nearly unlimited view of executive authority, like that a president’s wartime powers allowed him to defy Congressional statutes limiting torture and surveillance.

Indeed, Mr. Barron and Mr. Lederman had produced a definitive denunciation of such reasoning, co-writing a book-length, two-part Harvard Law Review essay in 2008 concluding that the Bush team’s theory of presidential powers that could not be checked by Congress was “an even more radical attempt to remake the constitutional law of war powers than is often recognized.” Then a senator, Mr. Obama had called the Bush theory that a president could bypass a statute requiring warrants for surveillance “illegal and unconstitutional.”

So, the President and lawyers who had said Bush could not ignore a statute outlawing wiretapping were faced with President’s desire to ignore a statute outlawing killing Americans. What an inconvenience!

Luckily, they found a way around it! Although the prohibition on killing Americans overseas was definitive and lacked exceptions (unlike a statute on domestic killings), a judge had ruled that the exceptions to the domestic killings prohibition necessarily applied to the prohibition on overseas killing. Pesky legal obstacle, you go squish now!

Anyway, the other takeaway from the article — which, again, is nothing new, but it helps to have the fact handy — is that Obama has now killed three American citizens with the drone program. One was al-Awlaki, whose classification changed from annoying propagandist for jihad (who somehow seemed to have talked to every terrorist in history just before their crimes, from 9/11 hijackers to Nidal Hasan) to enemy combatant based on the word of the underwear bomber, who told the feds al-Awlaki had explicitly encouraged him to commit his act of terror. The second was Samir Khan, who was still classified as annoying propagandist but was with al-Awlaki when the drone struck. The third was al-Awlaki’s son, who was at an eatery when bad intelligence caused a drone to fire a missile at a terrorist who wasn’t there.

Meaning we’re 1 for 3 with Americans who Lederman says it’s OK to kill without trial.

It amazes me how little the details of this appear to have been discussed on blogs.

I still remember the intense debates over FISA. Bloggers dove into the details of the justification for Bush’s decision to ignore the law. I never bought into Bush’s Article II justifications, which struck me as too much of an assertion of kingly powers, but for a while, I bought the argument that FISA authorized Bush to conduct the wiretaps. I ultimately changed my mind in 2008, because FISA explicitly provided for a declaration of war, meaning the AUMF could not implicitly authorize what the statute had already expressly prohibited.

The details of the legal discussion aren’t particularly relevant to this post — but what is relevant is that legal blogs were actively discussing these issues.

While there are certainly blogs that must be discussing the legal underpinnings of the authority to kill Americans, it seems to me that these discussions have not been as prevalent. This seems wrong to me. We’re talking about killing Americans, not wiretapping them. Shouldn’t the legal reasoning involved be at least as much at the forefront of our minds?

I, for one, pledge to try to dive into this further as time permits.

108 Responses to “NYT: Obama First to Deliberately Kill American Citizen Without Trial Since the Civil War”

  1. that’s nothing wait til you see how many americans the fascist little pig kills with obamacare

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  2. Yes, but Andrew McCarthy at the National Review Online says it perfectly acceptable and supported by both precedent and commentary on the Constitution by Alexander Hamilton to execute American citizens by executive order in time of war – or AUMF – and, supported by the editors of National Review, doesn’t think the administration has even ordered drone strikes at any American citizen sitting in a cafe.

    So perhaps the problem is deeper than how far people will go to stretch the legal precedents, but that there are advocates on “both sides” willing to embrace this extension of executive power no matter what.

    Sam (133e2f)

  3. The relevant point is that all three of the “Americans” who were killed were on foreign soil completely away from any American law enforcement mechanisms; Senator Paul’s point concerned targeting Americans in the United States, where our law enforcement powers are in place.

    A question I have is the move which charged al Qaeda spokesrat Sulaiman Abu Ghaith, a son-in-law of Osama bin Laden, in federal district court, with conspiracy to kill Americans. How can Mr Ghaith, who until this time never set foot in the United States, be charged with violating a law which can only apply within United States legal jurisdiction?

    The Dana who isn't a lawyer (3e4784)

  4. 2. So perhaps the problem is deeper than how far people will go to stretch the legal precedents, but that there are advocates on “both sides” willing to embrace this extension of executive power no matter what.

    Comment by Sam (133e2f) — 3/11/2013 @ 8:22 am

    That isn’t the problem. I like Andy McCarthy as much as the next guy but it doesn’t mean I think he’s always right simply because he’s Andy McCarthy.

    Perhaps the problem is the Krugman/Friedman fans don’t view things the same way?

    Steve57 (60a887)

  5. For what was apparently the first time since the Civil War, the United States government had carried out the deliberate killing of an American citizen as a wartime enemy and without a trial.

    Didn’t some American citizens of German descent join Hitler’s forces during WWII? Pretty sure that’s true, and many of them were KIA.

    Arguably, those weren’t “deliberate”, but from a constitutional standpoint, I don’t think that makes a difference.

    Kman (5576bf)

  6. Lindsay Graham is remarkably poorly informed. He sounds like the kind of politician who can be counted on to firmly support the policies of the lobbiest who got to him last. Having no memory nor independent knowledge of world affairs must be a blessing in a place like Washington D. C.

    And as for Alwaki, Catherine Herridge in The Next Wave wrote extensivly about his activities related to the rampup to the 9-11 attacks and a subsequent visit to the U.S. There was something very mysterious going on with him that reached high enough into the Bush administration that Alwaki was allowed to pass thru customs despite being recognized in that visit a year after 9-11. I expect that senior, non-political officials had made deals with him that they didn’t want exposed in order to protect their careers. I say non-political because they must still be in office in order to convince hte one that a hell fire missile into a cafe is an appropriate measure.

    bobathome (c0c2b5)

  7. When it comes to Sulaiman Abu Ghaith, not an American citizen, and who has never set foot in the US previously, it is interesting that the Obama Administration decided to charge him in federal district court, while kill orders are issued for actual American citizens, who happen to be beyond the reach of law enforcement.

    The Dana who notices these things (3e4784)

  8. Glenn Greenwald and Professor Ryan Goodman address similar concerns. Goodman’s op-ed is especially interesting because it addresses weaknesses in Holder’s response.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  9. Of course, there’s the interesting question of what happens if Mr Ghaith is acquitted.

    The concerned Dana (3e4784)

  10. kman

    the war against germany was a declared war and any person giving aide to the enemy was declared an enemy combantant, ergo there is a huge difference between what a democrat FDR did and the democrat Obama did.

    But I’m more than okay with it

    EPWJ (590d06)

  11. Just remember: Kman is here to Speak Twoof to Powder. I don’t think he even cares about any of the issues about which he posts. He just wants to show how boss cool he is by contradicting others. Even if he makes no sense.

    Simon Jester (c8876d)

  12. As noted, there were many (hundreds, probably) of U.S. citizens in the armed forces of the Axis powers during WW II.

    There was a lot of migration back as well as forth in that era of mass immigration. The infamous propagandist William Joyce (“Lord Haw-haw”) was born in the U.S. and could have claimed U.S. citizenship.

    There are perhaps even more pseudo-Americans around today. It is quite common for women from some countries to give birth in the U.S. so the child can have a U.S. passport. Koreans do it to avoid future military service. Middle Easterners do it a lot; Embassy personnel there frequently encounter “Americans” who have not set foot in the U.S. since they were a month old.

    Now suppose one of these became an al-Qaeda figure. Does his nominal citizenship protect him more than the Saudi or Egyptian standing next to him?

    The present contretemps arises from the fact that we can and do compile more detailed intelligence about targets, and that we can make the decision to shoot at a much higher level than before.

    It makes the decision feel different, but really it isn’t.

    Rich Rostrom (47c4e2)

  13. 18 USC § 1119 – Foreign murder of United States nationals
    (b) Offense.— A person who, being a national of the United States, kills or attempts to kill a national of the United States while such national is outside the United States but within the jurisdiction of another country shall be punished as provided under sections 1111, 1112, and 1113.

    Neo (d1c681)

  14. 5. Didn’t some American citizens of German descent join Hitler’s forces during WWII? Pretty sure that’s true, and many of them were KIA.

    Arguably, those weren’t “deliberate”, but from a constitutional standpoint, I don’t think that makes a difference.

    Comment by Kman (5576bf) — 3/11/2013 @ 8:58 am

    It wasn’t just the Germans. I personally know (or knew in the case of the deceased) American citizens who were trapped by the outbreak of war between the US and Japan because their parents had sent them back for schooling.

    Then jumped at the chance to work for the occupation forces to get a little payback for what they had to endure from the Japanese authorities during the war years. Thing is, lots did cooperate with the Japanese authorities. Who do you think was monitoring the frequencies ships and aircraft were using to speak in the clear?

    Tokyo Rose

    It happens more than you think. Still, it seems to me there is a distinction between setting out to sink the IJN Yamato and setting out to kill Awlaki.

    Not that I’m saying killing Awlaki was wrong. Just a different kettle of fish.

    Steve57 (60a887)

  15. How can Mr Ghaith, who until this time never set foot in the United States, be charged with violating a law which can only apply within United States legal jurisdiction?

    Comment by The Dana who isn’t a lawyer (3e4784) — 3/11/2013 @ 8:36 am

    Ahem, the same way we hanged Goering and von Ribentrop? Unlawful warfare anywhere can be prosecuted as a crime anywhere and everywhere, see e.g. The Nuremberg Principles. (I want to see it applied in Sudan and the Congo, BTW.)

    nk (53646e)

  16. Following up on Professor Goodman’s concerns that I linked above, the White House claims that it can target Americans who are “engaged in combat” but it won’t define or limit what that means.

    al-Awlaki was a propagandist and operator killed after getting breakfast. And, as Goodman writes, Obama has included financiers as acceptable targets for foreign drone strikes. If the same rules apply in the U.S., at the very least we can expect more unintended collateral damage and mistaken deaths.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  17. Rostrum, you are wrong. The decision is different. A combatant in the field is anonymous, he’s targeted for his role and status. Standing on a battlefield armed or engaged in a combatant role. Being located within a military facility or military vehicle.

    Using intelligence to identify a specific person, then deciding to target that person when found, regardless of their actions/status/role at the time they are found, is different.

    SPQR (768505)

  18. Senator Graham said: “To my Republican colleagues: I don’t remember any of you comin’ down here suggesting that President Bush was going to kill anybody with a drone. I don’t even remember the harshest critics of President Bush on the Democratic side. They had a drone program then. So what is it all of a sudden that has this drone program has gotten every Republican so spun up? What are we up to here?”

    Well, the reason it has me a bit spun up is that we didn’t have drones operating in American airspace when Bush was president. Now, the number of drones being used by law enforcement over our own homes and streets is growing exponentially. Domestic drones violate our Constitutional rights already. We’ve already seen arrests being made following surveillance by a drone:
    http://pjmedia.com/tatler/headline/police-use-of-drones-leads-to-arrest-of-north-dakota-farmer/

    Armed drones over our cities are on the way:
    http://theroycroftreport.com/2012/05/23/armed-domestic-drones-are-coming-to-your-town/

    Given the poor management of militarized police tactics — I do not need to tell Patterico’s readers about the plethora of police home invasions, many of which have ended in the death of some innocent party, including dogs — is it really so unbelievable that they would be equally careless in managing armed drones?

    Whatever atrocities our militarized police are already committing with SWAT teams and botched home invasions will surely be exacerbated when they get their hands on armed domestic drones. Maybe Obama won’t try to kill us, but local police and the feds definitely will. Remember how the LA police shot up vehicles that only maybe looked a little like Dorner’s truck? The one with the little old ladies? Imagine if the cops had used an armed domestic drone to attack that truck.

    Congress needs to affirm protections for Americans against the use of armed domestic drones by any government official, at any and all levels of government. Rand Paul didn’t go far enough.

    pa (4f643b)

  19. Our Windy City Barrister wrote:

    Ahem, the same way we hanged Goering and von Ribentrop? Unlawful warfare anywhere can be prosecuted as a crime anywhere and everywhere, see e.g. The Nuremberg Principles. (I want to see it applied in Sudan and the Congo, BTW.)

    I’ve always been of the opinion that the Nuremberg trials were simply the excuses of the winners to hang the losers, pretty much as Curtis LeMay said would have been his fate had Japan won the war.

    However, Mr Ghaith has only been charged with conspiracy thus far; not committing unlawful warfare but planning to commit unlawful warfare. And if such a trial is to be held, ought not it to be held at the ICC at The Hague?

    The Dana who still isn't a lawyer (3e4784)

  20. 15. al-Awlaki was a propagandist and operator killed after getting breakfast. And, as Goodman writes, Obama has included financiers as acceptable targets for foreign drone strikes. If the same rules apply in the U.S., at the very least we can expect more unintended collateral damage and mistaken deaths.

    Comment by DRJ (a83b8b) — 3/11/2013 @ 9:34 am

    Prosecutors like Pat perform an invaluable service to society. I don’t think that can be said enough.

    But then I think defense attorneys also perform an an invaluable service by requiring prosecutors to show their work.

    The value the work prosecutors do is directly related to their ability to show they are hitting a high bar. As a conservative I don’t think it’s just tax money that the government should be able to take without proving its case, but your freedom and your life as well.

    But those are the laws that should apply only if you are legitimately here.

    Steve57 (60a887)

  21. Somewhat off topic but possibly relevant:

    The newspaper of record has forgotten (or is ignoring) the murder of Vickie Weaver at Ruby Ridge. In late Summer of 1992 she was standing in the doorway of her home holding her 10 month old infant when an FBI sniper, Lon Horiuchi, trespassing on Weaver land, shot her in the head without warning from a concealed position 200 yards away, half of her face blown off she was dead before she hit the threshold.

    Vickie Weaver had not been charged with a crime, nor was there a warrant out for her arrest or even a subpoena for her testimony outstanding. Her husband Randy was wanted for failing to appear for trial on trumped up charges, and Deputy US Marshal Art Roderick had already shot the family dog and the Weaver’s 14 year old son Sammy in the back, killing both of them.

    Just before he shot Vickie, Horiuchi attempted to kill her husband by shooting him in the back without warning. Horiuchi admitted he targeted Weaver’s spine but missed a few inched off to the side. Randy survived as did 2 daughters, they eventually got taxpayer hush money, $100,000 for Randy and 1 million each for the girls.

    The local county DA subsequently indicted Horiuchi for manslaughter but the trial was removed to federal court and quickly dismissed on grounds of sovereign immunity. The Ninth Circus reversed that decision, however a new county DA had taken office following the 2000 election and dropped all charges against Horiuchi and most of the same team went off to do pretty much the same thing all over again at Waco.

    ropelight (0156a0)

  22. LeMay and Truman, too. That’s what this discussion is about. War against civilians not in combat. That’s what makes warfare truly unlawful, not the lack of uniforms or badges. (And the charge against von Ribentrop was conspiracy to wage war.)

    nk (53646e)

  23. This blog does go in the details, although their conclusions are debatable;

    http://www.emptywheel.net/2013/03/11/somehow-dod-kept-missing-anwar-al-awlaki/

    narciso (3fec35)

  24. While I admire your legal acumen, Patrick, I think your efforts are wasted on the administration. We already know what they think of the law.

    Keep pounding on it anyway. The public still outnumbers them (though the margin shrinks day by day). If sanity ever returns to the electorate maybe honesty and respect will return to Washington.

    creeper (f53367)

  25. You don’t have to like Randy Weaver to realize he wasn’t important and if the gub’mint was willing to employ that amount of force against an insignificant worm I’m supposed to be cool with their armed drones?

    I am reasonably certain I’m on one of their lists or another.

    Steve57 (60a887)

  26. Comment by happyfeet (8ce051) — 3/11/2013 @ 8:22 am

    Besides the millions killed by Blackmun in Roe v. Wade, and largely paid by the government.

    askeptic (b8ab92)

  27. Musings-

    – Just when you think you have won a point like plans to try terrorists out of country in front of military tribunals instead of NYC, they sneak someone in to be tried before civilian courts
    while others they kill from a distance so they can’t even interrogate
    – I guess in order to make sense of what these people do, one needs to always take into account what they have to gain in the political aspects of an action.

    – Meanwhile, one child gets in trouble for nibbling a pop-tart into the shape of a gun (unclear if it was in the image of a military style gun), and another child has the plastic soldiers on his cupcakes removed (little did I know as a child)

    – And the head of pacific command says the biggest security threat in Asia is global warming

    Mark Steyn makes the point that no country stupid enough to make an issue out of a nibbled Pop tart can survive (had it been nibbled into some kind of sexual reference it probably would have been protected in many schools)

    MD in Philly (3d3f72)

  28. Comment by DRJ (a83b8b) — 3/11/2013 @ 9:34 am

    At least he had a Last Meal of his choice.

    askeptic (b8ab92)

  29. Comment by pa (4f643b) — 3/11/2013 @ 9:42 am

    IIRC the Border Patrol has used remotely piloted lighter-than-air craft for border surveillance since the 90’s as an adjunct to the use of buried sensors in remote areas to monitor smuggling – both of drugs and of people.

    askeptic (b8ab92)

  30. While I’m at it, there’s a pretty good case to be made for including JFK on the list of Americans killed by the government without a trial.

    ropelight (0156a0)

  31. Comment by The Dana who still isn’t a lawyer (3e4784) — 3/11/2013 @ 9:43 am

    Though I would prefer that this individual be confined to GITMO for the rest of his miserable life (and I would make sure that it was miserable), it is my understanding that the relevant Laws of Land Warfare do not have a provision for “conspiracy”, therefore they had to try him in an Art-3 court, instead of in a Military Tribunal (Art-2).

    askeptic (b8ab92)

  32. rope, JFK has to answer for the Coup that he signed-off on that was, if not directed by, was at least put in motion by the words and actions of his Ambassador to South Vietnam, Henry Cabot Lodge, resulting in the deaths of that country’s President, and the President’s brother.

    askeptic (b8ab92)

  33. #30, yes, askeptic, I understand that JFK was scheduled to can HCL first thing Monday morning right after he got back from his trip to Dallas with his good buddy LBJ.

    ropelight (0156a0)

  34. The understanding was that Diem and his brother, be detained, it was a little less clear with Lumumba,

    narciso (3fec35)

  35. What’s the old saw about the best plans go by the wayside with the first contact with the enemy.
    Without “minders” accompanying those engaged in the Coup, there was no way that the Diem’s were going to be just “detained”.

    askeptic (b8ab92)

  36. The counselor from Chicago wrote:

    LeMay and Truman, too. That’s what this discussion is about. War against civilians not in combat.

    Isn’t it? The soldiers in the field require plenty of things produced and transported by civilians: munitions, uniforms, boots, food, trucks, just a whole host of things, and destroying the civilian infrastructure which makes it possible for an army in the field to engage in combat is a form of combat in itself.

    The atomic bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki persuaded the Emperor to force surrender on the generals; that saved uncounted American soldiers’ and Marines’ lives who would otherwise have had to invade Honshu. How is that not legitimate combat?

    How about the civilians who willingly hide al Qaeda terrorists? Or, perhaps more obviously, the civilians who deliberately hide, supply and support Hamas in Gaza against Israel? Are they in combat, or not legitimate combat targets?

    Even that greatest of generals, King Richard Cœur de Lion, engaged in most of his battles not against an enemy in the field but against the fields of his enemies, despoiling their property and source of income; that was how chivalry fought wars in the 11th century. It’s not like the concept of total war against the support system of your enemy is a novel concept.

    The historian Dana (3e4784)

  37. Hiroshima and Nagasaki both contained legitimate military targets. IIRC, the parent company of Subaru (Fuji Heavy Industries) is HQ’d in Hiroshima, and was a prime military contractor during the war, making among other things – warships.

    askeptic (b8ab92)

  38. askeptic wrote:

    Though I would prefer that this individual be confined to GITMO for the rest of his miserable life (and I would make sure that it was miserable), it is my understanding that the relevant Laws of Land Warfare do not have a provision for “conspiracy”, therefore they had to try him in an Art-3 court, instead of in a Military Tribunal (Art-2).

    Rule number absotively, posilutely one: never take into custody anyone you are not prepared to to release eventually.

    Our esteemed host is a prosecutor, and there have to be many cases where he saw perps that he, and everybody else, knew were guilty, guilty, guilty, but for reasons, perhaps beyond his control, they were set free.

    And so it is with Sulaiman Abu Ghaith. President Obama and his minions have decided to try him in federal court, where the very real possibility of an acquittal exists. Perhaps they believe that the case against him is foolproof, but in an administration full of fools, failure is always possible. And no one should ever think that he absolutely knows what a jury will do.

    The coldly realistic Dana (3e4784)

  39. #32 & 33, I’ve never been comfortable with the Diem coup story. JFK had already announced his intention to withdraw US forces from Vietnam by the end of 1964 with the first 1000 troops home by Christmas ’63.

    There was no burning reason to kill the Diem brothers, not if Kennedy really intended to get out of SEA. And, after Watergate there were lots of rumors about E. Howard Hunt manufacturing documents to implicate JFK in the coup.

    ropelight (0156a0)

  40. Mark Moyar in his Victory Forsaken, argues the Diem coup was one of those major losses, long before the major deployments in ’65, and this was because Harriman, and Lodge were relying on Halberstam, who in turn had dubious sources.

    narciso (3fec35)

  41. Madame Nhu had some not quite complimentary things to say about the deceased JFK following his assassination.

    askeptic (b8ab92)

  42. 35. Hiroshima and Nagasaki both contained legitimate military targets. IIRC, the parent company of Subaru (Fuji Heavy Industries) is HQ’d in Hiroshima, and was a prime military contractor during the war, making among other things – warships.

    Comment by askeptic (b8ab92) — 3/11/2013 @ 10:52 am

    I can pretty much guarantee that nobody was making millions building Japanese warships by 1945. Considering nobody was building Japanese warships.

    Rapidly approaching the force levels the Swiss customs and border control police employ on Lake Geneva, the Japanese navy was forced to make a hard choice. For the stated purpose of reinforcing the defense of Okinawa, they scraped together a handful of destroyers plus a light cruiser and a battleship. In reality they had no hope of getting those ships there but they fervently wished the ships might prove enough of a distraction to draw air cover off of the US fleet and permit their kamikazes to get through.

    Not knowing the US Fleet had enough aircraft to deal with both eventualities, plus an entire axis power to be named later in the draft.

    Just not seeing the millions in profit to be made building Japanese warships. Had there been such a profit, there would have been Japanese warships.

    Steve57 (60a887)

  43. 36. And so it is with Sulaiman Abu Ghaith. President Obama and his minions have decided to try him in federal court, where the very real possibility of an acquittal exists. Perhaps they believe that the case against him is foolproof, but in an administration full of fools, failure is always possible. And no one should ever think that he absolutely knows what a jury will do.

    Comment by The coldly realistic Dana (3e4784) — 3/11/2013 @ 10:56 am

    It’s gonna do this administration proud when Abu Ghaith gets acquitted and they detain him anyhow at GITMO. Then we’ve proved to the world, what?

    Steve57 (60a887)

  44. I refer to Lindsey Graham and John McCain as LIERS.
    Low information establishment Republicans.

    GUS (694db4)

  45. Another such operation, was that managed by the Spaillats, against Trujillo, the whole thing eventually prompted another coup in ’63, and the Marines in ’65.

    narciso (3fec35)

  46. Think think I disagree, in that during a declared war the Article II powers of the president to conduct that war as he sees fit are not subject to countermanding by the legislature. Not even prospectively.

    Tapping communications between anyone, including Americans, and overseas adversaries is so obviously part of a war effort that I cannot see any reasonable argument that it isn’t. It really doesn’t matter what kind of law the Congress has passed. They don’t have the power to limit the president’s war-fighting efforts.

    There is one commander-in-chief and for very good reasons (this being one of them).

    The debate that Rand Paul is having regards operations domestically, not overseas, and conflating the two situations serves no good purpose.

    Kevin M (bf8ad7)

  47. I’m confused by the killing of the son. For a long time after he was killed, he was called a militant by the admin, by the press, and we all know what Robert Gibbs had tomsaynabout him

    Now the story is he was not targeted, killing him was an a ident, and they had no evidence he was involved in terrorism.

    What does that first response tell us? We’re they lying then or now?

    MayBee (f32100)

  48. What does that first response tell us?

    Their instinctive response is inevitably dishonest.

    Were they lying then or now?

    Both?

    JD (b63a52)

  49. Kevin M @44, you do realize Congress is empowered by the Constitution to do certain things related to warmaking for a reason?

    Steve57 (60a887)

  50. MayBee asks:

    What does that first response tell us? We’re they lying then or now?

    Yes.

    The accurate Dana (3e4784)

  51. This is who they say they were going for;

    http://www.allvoices.com/contributed-news/10617676-breakingalqaeda-main-man-killed-in-yemen

    the same folks who whined about Omar Kadr, the one who threw a grenade, at Specialist Speer, and Baby Taliban, Mohammd Ismail, were mostly silent here

    narciso (3fec35)

  52. Lindsay Graham is remarkably poorly informed.

    maybe Kmart is Lindsay Graham?

    redc1c4 (403dff)

  53. Comment by Kevin M (bf8ad7) — 3/11/2013 @ 11:40 am

    Then you are saying that the entire UCMJ is unconstitutional, as are the Geneva and Hague Conventions.

    SPQR (768505)

  54. It’s gonna do this administration proud when Abu Ghaith gets acquitted and they detain him anyhow at GITMO. Then we’ve proved to the world, what?
    Comment by Steve57 (60a887) — 3/11/2013 @ 11:18 am

    Sadly, this seems very possible. Although instead of GTMO, they may offer a cabinet position. Flip a coin.

    Stashiu3 (1680c0)

  55. He’ll do less damage in cabinet.

    SPQR (768505)

  56. 40- Whether or not there were “profits” being made, the fact that Fuji was a prime military contractor was the point, just as in Nagasaki, there were targets of military value – and the greatest military value was to convince the Emperor that the war was lost, and the only way he could save his country was to surrender.
    Hell, for all I know, they (both cities) were heavy into making Kamikaze planes, which would have been a threat to any invasion plans (the U.S. Navy lost more ships to Kamikaze’s at Iwo and Okinawa than at any time during the war – including IIRC Pearl).

    askeptic (b8ab92)

  57. Robert Gibbs?

    Oh, you mean “D.C. Bob”!

    askeptic (b8ab92)

  58. They don’t have the power to limit the president’s war-fighting efforts.

    Like all other Executive activities they – the Legislature – disagree with, they can cut the funding. Of course, for that they have to answer to the voters at the next election.

    askeptic (b8ab92)

  59. This is what I was speaking of earlier;

    http://www.normangall.com/dominicanr_art2.htm

    narciso (3fec35)

  60. Under the category of Justice’s Gain is Labor’s Loss, there’s this:

    President Barack Obama is poised to select Justice Department official Thomas Perez to be the next labor secretary, according to two people familiar with the deliberation process.

    askeptic (b8ab92)

  61. This links to the entire article at one time as a single page: (I don’t think you can do that with the Washington Post and some other websites)

    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/03/10/world/middleeast/anwar-al-awlaki-a-us-citizen-in-americas-cross-hairs.html?pagewanted=all

    The article takes up a small part of three somewhat wider than usual columns above the fold on the front page, * and the entire page 20 of the Sunday, March 10, 2013 New York times.

    * The New York Times ran three columns where usuaally four col;umns appear in the middle of the paper above the fold. Some pictures also take up space.

    Sammy Finkelman (d22d64)

  62. 54. Hell, for all I know, they (both cities) were heavy into making Kamikaze planes, which would have been a threat to any invasion plans (the U.S. Navy lost more ships to Kamikaze’s at Iwo and Okinawa than at any time during the war – including IIRC Pearl).

    Comment by askeptic (b8ab92) — 3/11/2013 @ 1:36 pm

    In point of fact the Japanese weren’t heavy into building much. The Mitsubishi plant that built Zero component parts wasn’t even located near a railhead. They had to ship the components to airfields where they could be assembled in oxcarts. Why oxcarts? Because horses moved too fast over the crappy Japanese roads and bounced the delicate parts around too much, that’s why oxcarts.

    Secretary of the Navy Frank Knox observed after the Battle of Midway that Japan was unqualified to participate in modern warfare. His opinion was shared by many Japanese. It’s not like they were stupid. The troops could see the difference and they knew the high command was full of it when they accused them of not applying sufficient bushido to the problem.

    Hara Tameichi, author of “Japanese Destroyer Captain,” writes of the extended drunk he went on when confronted with the PT boat Japanese industry finally came up with to equip the men he was supposed to train to repel the American invaders during a brief shore tour toward the end of his war.

    I forget how many tons the boat actually displaced, but a combination of two 2000 pound torpedoes, at least four men, machine guns, and one worn out 1930s-era Japanese car engine doesn’t add up to invigorating performance.

    When he sobered up he told the new graduates they were being sent to their deaths.

    The fact that the Japanese are an intelligent and creative people is perhaps best demonstrated that they continued to put up a ferocious battle despite the best efforts of their centrally directed economy to kill them. R.E. the Kamikazes I think you’ll find that as the war dragged on the most effective were the older biplane string bags. Canvas and wood doesn’t show up on radar. The more modern aircraft did. The Japanese figured that out, and surprise!

    Steve57 (60a887)

  63. I think another reason Obama has come under criticism for the drone strikes is that there are so many of them.

    Awlaki looks like the only American actually targeted.

    Documents discovered in bin Laden’s home in Abbotabad show that Awlaki was proposed as the new head of Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, but Osama bin Laden rejected that idea. (this is revealed in one of the very few documents released.)

    http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/news/washington/story/2012-05-03/bin-laden-documents-released/54738130/1

    Bin Laden seems almost dismissive of Awlaki, the U.S. born al-Qaeda propagandist headquartered in Yemen. Awlaki, who was killed by a U.S. drone strike last year, had been dubbed by a prominent Arab news network as the “bin Laden of the internet.” But bin Laden batted away suggestions that Awlaki could take over the al-Qaeda franchise in Yemen.

    I thin that particular document – whatever dicuments showed it, was released in order to show that Awlaki deserved to be targeted.

    Sammy Finkelman (d22d64)

  64. What nobody on eitehr side of the debate seems to be acknowledging is the high probability of faulty intelligence. If you have read a lot you know that this has happened, although mostly it seems to have been false intelligence that somebody important was going to be somewhere. Usually, other people from Al Qaeda were there.

    Pakistan;s rogue military intelligence agency seems to be very good. They seem to have Karzai now saying that the U.S. is on the sid eof the Taliban.

    The truth is, any Taliban that genuinely wanted to end the war, wound up being targeted.

    That’s one reason we need different people in the CIA.

    Sammy Finkelman (d22d64)

  65. What nobody on eitehr side of the debate seems to be acknowledging is the high probability of faulty intelligence.

    Sammy, that’s not true. Only one side is refusing to acknowledge the possibility of faulty intelligence and that’s the side that sent Susan Rice around to talkshows to pimp a story about spontaneous Benghazi protest over a video.

    Steve57 (60a887)

  66. Kevin M @44, you do realize Congress is empowered by the Constitution to do certain things related to warmaking for a reason?

    Yes, but after they’ve declared war they pretty much control the size of the army and the amount spent, and not much else. The period in question was covered by a declaration of war (an AUMF is such).

    Kevin M (bf8ad7)

  67. Then you are saying that the entire UCMJ is unconstitutional, as are the Geneva and Hague Conventions.

    No. Treaties are always exceptions. The UCMJ is a regulation on military behavior, and has nothing to do with particulars. Sure it may limit the president’s ability to (successfully) order atrocities, but is that the issue here?

    Kevin M (bf8ad7)

  68. Like all other Executive activities they – the Legislature – disagree with, they can cut the funding

    They can also limit the size of the army. Maybe they could also undeclare war. But they cannot order the 3rd Army into Belgium or say that the NSA cannot eavesdrop on the enemy.

    Kevin M (bf8ad7)

  69. There was some commentary about medals, and that their value may have been deflated by current standards used to award them.
    But, this one still means something, as did the service that generated its award:

    http://www.guns.com/2013/03/11/army-chaplain-emil-kapaun-to-receive-medal-of-honor-video/

    Well Done, Padre!

    askeptic (b8ab92)

  70. It’s a reasonable suspicion about the quality of intelligence, coming out of Yemen;

    http://www.longwarjournal.org/archives/2011/04/yemeni_government_of.php

    narciso (3fec35)

  71. askeptic, the current standards to cheapen the award. I know with reasonable certainty that had I deployed to Afghanistan I would have come back with a Bronze Star.

    I didn’t deploy to Afghanistan. I was told to deploy to certain other garden spots. Therefore I came back with a collection of Navy Commendation Medals.

    I am greatly relieved no one saw fit to give me a Bronze Star for putting together a really impressive PowerPoint presentation. I don’t think I could have lived that down.

    How could I have even admitted to getting a Bronze Star for a year of putting together PowerPoint presentations and never going outside the wire? When I know men or know of men who actually did something that needed to be done at risk to their lives and health?

    You can cheapen the award. No one can cheapen the deed. I am deeply gratified that the government is upgrading his Distinguished Service Cross to the Medal of Honor. I hope it doesn’t negatively impact the move to canonize him as a saint. He’s already been named Servus Dei, a servant of God. I have no doubt he’ll be declared Venerable, the second of the four steps toward sainthood. The criteria to be declared Venerable is that one must have been “heroic in virtue.” I’m sure those words have a specific meaning for the purpose but if Emil Kapuan wasn’t heroic in virtue I don’t know who could possibly qualify.

    It’s kind of awesome to think that Emil Kapuan could earn the MoH and achieve sainthood. I don’t think it’s ever been done before; the Catholic Church declaring someone a saint for the same deeds that earned that person their nation’s highest military honor.

    So I’ll join in. Good job, Chaps!

    Steve57 (60a887)

  72. No. Treaties are always exceptions. The UCMJ is a regulation on military behavior, and has nothing to do with particulars. Sure it may limit the president’s ability to (successfully) order atrocities, but is that the issue here?

    Comment by Kevin M (bf8ad7) — 3/11/2013 @ 3:11 pm

    Then you admit that your claim “… during a declared war the Article II powers of the president to conduct that war as he sees fit are not subject to countermanding by the legislature” was false?

    SPQR (768505)

  73. That is a remarkable feat, OTOH, this seems to be what we see more and more of these days;

    http://www.foxnews.com/world/2013/03/11/muslim-holy-warrior-known-as-american-seen-in-syria/?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitter

    narciso (3fec35)

  74. The Wichita Eagle: The Miracle Of Father Kapaun

    I found the effect he had on those who weren’t Catholic or even Christian particularly interesting.

    Kapaun would have been upset had he known the risks his friends took to honor him.

    Back in the camp, Walt Mayo, after the dying Kapaun handed him the ciborium, had hid it; guards took it anyway. Weeks later, Mayo, Nardella and the others nearly rioted when a prisoner saw the camp commander’s 4-year-old daughter throwing it in the air and catching it. Nardella demanded it; the Chinese refused until war’s end.

    In the two years before their release, many prisoners talked about Kapaun day and night. A few weeks after Kapaun died, when a profane Marine Corps fighter pilot named Jerry Fink was brought to camp, Kapaun was nearly all he heard about. Even a tough Muslim POW named Fezi Bey told Fink that Kapaun had awed all the Turks.

    “He is not of my religion, but he is a man of God,” Bey said.

    Fink was a Jew with little interest in Christianity. He was also an artist, and he hated the guards. When Nardella said he wanted a shrine to honor Kapaun and defy the guards, Fink vowed to do something profound.

    What happened became the next chapter in the Kapaun legend: the Jewish warrior carving a sculpture of the crucified Christ in a mud-hut hell.

    Fink spent weeks picking over firewood. He selected pieces of scrub oak for the cross and fine-grained cherry wood for the body.

    Other prisoners, including Mayo’s buddy Phil Peterson, showed Fink how to tear up old GI boots, removing the steel arches. Fink and Peterson spent weeks filing steel on rocks until they had sharp blades.

    Fink made a chisel out of a broken drainpipe; he spent months carving a 47-inch-by-28-inch cross. He carved a 2-foot-long body and a bearded face that others said looked surprisingly like the face of Kapaun.

    He twisted radio wire to make a crown of thorns. He sneaked up to the building of the camp commander, smashed a window, and used the ground glass to sand the sculpture.

    Guards demanded to know who the face was.

    “Abraham Lincoln,” Fink lied. The guards regarded Lincoln as a kindred spirit.

    But when at last they saw it was Christ, some guards spat at it; others threw Fink into a punishment hole. But they seemed afraid to touch the sculpture.

    Years later, when Fink visited Kapaun’s friends and family in Kansas, he talked of hate. “I can still bring up the hate. It’s what kept me going.”

    But what made him carve the cross, he said, was the story of a man who rejected hate, who told all the Jerry Finks of the world to love their enemies. Fink did not emulate that idea — but he risked his life to honor it.

    “If the meek shall inherit the earth, it will be because people like Father Kapaun willed it to them,” Fink told reporters in Wichita. “I am a Jew, but that man will always live in my heart.”

    Read more here: http://www.kansas.com/2009/12/12/1094896/father-emil-kapaun-pows-call-him.html#storylink=cpy

    Steve57 (60a887)

  75. From the NY Times article:

    The next day, a 23-year-old Nigerian named Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab tried and failed to blow up an airliner as it approached Detroit. The would-be underwear bomber told F.B.I. agents that after he went to Yemen and tracked down Mr. Awlaki, his online hero, the cleric had discussed “martyrdom and jihad” with him, approved him for a suicide mission, helped him prepare a martyrdom video and directed him to detonate his bomb over United States territory, according to court documents.

    ¶ In his initial 50-minute interrogation on Dec. 25, 2009, before he stopped speaking for a month, Mr. Abdulmutallab said he had been sent by a terrorist named Abu Tarek, although intelligence agencies quickly found indications that Mr. Awlaki was probably involved. When Mr. Abdulmutallab resumed cooperating with interrogators in late January, an official said, he admitted that “Abu Tarek” was Mr. Awlaki. With the Nigerian’s statements, American officials had witness confirmation that Mr. Awlaki was clearly a direct plotter, no longer just a dangerous propagandist.

    ¶ “He had been on the radar all along, but it was Abdulmutallab’s testimony that really sealed it in my mind that this guy was dangerous and that we needed to go after him,” said Dennis C. Blair, then director of national intelligence.

    I have no sympathy for al-Awlaki, who was a terrorist sympathizer and propagandist. But the Underwear Bomber’s case was treated like a law enforcement matter, so I assume that the FBI, et al, offered him leniency if he revealed people higher up in Al Qaeda.

    Typically, law enforcement and prosecutors require more than a co-conspirator’s word — they also need corroborating evidence. Was there any here? How do they know the Underwear Bomber didn’t lie about al-Awlaki in order to get more lenient treatment?

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  76. That does seem a dubious claim, as there was the strike on Majala, before that attempt,

    narciso (3fec35)

  77. this is no different than what happened to Trayvon

    no justice no peace is what I say

    (and when I say it I use an emphatic hand gesture)

    happyfeet (4bf7c2)

  78. Truly off topic, but Brett Kimberlin has graduated to stalking… my wife.

    Read it all, here.

    Aaron "Worthing" Walker (23789b)

  79. DRJ, I also have no sympathy for Awlaki. He could have surrendered himself anytime. It wasn’t exactly a secret the government was going to at some point kill him if he continued his activities.

    NYT: Ruling Allows U.S. Effort to Kill Awlaki in Yemen

    WASHINGTON — A federal judge on Tuesday threw out a lawsuit that had sought to block the American government from trying to kill Anwar al-Awlaki, a United States citizen and Muslim cleric in hiding overseas who is accused of helping to plan attacks by Al Qaeda’s branch in Yemen.

    However it wouldn’t have surprised me to learn the gub’mint lawyers were something less than diligent in preparing the case against Awlaki.

    Just as it wouldn’t surprise me to learn the gub’mint lawyers were something less than diligent in checking out the underwear bombers claims.

    The usually reliable bloggers at Powerline recently had a post up about the EEOC going to bat for propationary steelworkers against random drug and alcohol testing. They argued, pathetically, that these screenings were somehow baseless. As if having drunk or high workers involved in the manipulation of molten metal was somehow not critically related to workplace safety (the unions even wanted this testing done). The EEOC lawyers even argued that the tests were unlawful because they lacked an individual basis. The judge upon further questioning determined the EEOC lawyers had no clue to the fact that such an individualized suspicion would be impossible to form in the type of work environment under discussion. All the workers are wearing gas masks due to the hazardous fumes as well as other PPE. Like a manager is going to smell alcohol on their breath or something, or determine that some guy is lumbering just a bit more drunkenly than the other guys laboring under all that gear.

    But mostly the judge determined that the EEOC lawyers had never once even visited the work site to learn what it was they were talking about. That was about when the suit was thrown out.

    It’s possible to not have sympathy with Awlaki and still not have any great expectations for the attorneys.

    Steve57 (60a887)

  80. Graham: “To my Republican colleagues: I don’t remember any of you comin’ down here suggesting that President Bush was going to kill anybody with a drone” Hey dunce Graham: Neither Rand Paul, Lee, or Rubio were in the Senate then jackass.

    jb (1e0905)

  81. From the wiki, this is where Awlaki was at the time,

    Yemeni officials have said that Abdulmutallab traveled to the mountainous Shabwah Province to meet with “al-Qaeda elements” before leaving Yemen.[10] A video of Abdulmutallab and others training in a desert camp, firing weapons at targets including the Jewish star, the British Union Jack, and the letters “UN”, was produced by al-Qaeda in Yemen (whose logo is in a corner of the screen).[59] The tape includes an apparent martyrdom statement justifying his actions against “the Jews and the Christians and their agents.”[59] Ghanaian officials say he was there from December 9 until December 24, when he flew to Lagos.[60]

    narciso (3fec35)

  82. According to this article (based on court documents), al-Awlaki was targeted “largely based” on the Underwear Bomber’s interrogations:

    In early 2010, officials began hinting that Mr. Abdulmutallab had told interrogators that Mr. Awlaki had played a role in his attempted attack, and in July 2010 the Treasury Department accused Mr. Awlaki of playing an “operational” role for Al Qaeda’s Yemen affiliate by “preparing” him for the attack, but offered no evidence. The court filings make clear that this conclusion was largely based on Mr. Abdulmutallab’s interrogations and fills in what he divulged.

    I think the relevant court document is the Sentencing Memorandum, especially the Appendix beginning at page 12. It states that the “bulk of the evidence” comes from debriefing statements made by the Abdulmutallab in his FBI interrogations.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  83. In other words, apparently all it takes to target an American citizen is terrorist propaganda and a co-conspirator’s word. That’s probably good enough in most cases but it wouldn’t be enough in an American court.

    And it certainly wasn’t enough for liberals to agree to lock up someone at Gitmo during the Bush Administration.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  84. That’s probably good enough in most cases but it wouldn’t be enough in an American court.

    DRJ, that’s why I’m all for not blurring the distinction between law enforcement and warfare.

    All you have to do in war is satisfy yourself that so and so is a combatant. You don’t have to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that he’s a criminal as is the case in a law enforcement matter.

    Awlaki knew he was considered an enemy combatant by the USG. He did nothing to alter the situation. I suppose one might argue that he had no reason to trust a government that was trying to off him, but then that’s always true of governments at war and we still get plenty of people to surrender. Had Awlaki surrendered he wouldn’t have been killed. He may well have even beaten the case against him; I wouldn’t be surprised to find the government lawyers had failed to even prepare a decent case against him, so sure they were they’d never have to make it.

    I have no sympathy for Awlaki because he was an enemy combatant. Knowingly and willingly. Whether or not there was a successful case that could have been made against him in an American court I have no opinion on.

    Steve57 (60a887)

  85. I’m interested to read that court decision mentioned in the NYT article. Anyone know where to find it?

    Patterico (9c670f)

  86. Patterico,

    The NY Times article you link in the post talks about the Abdulmutallab case. Is that the case you are talking about?

    If so, all I found is the Sentencing Memorandum that I linked in comment 83, but it incorporates an Appendix at page 12 that is a proffer of what the government planned to present at trial.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  87. I’ll have to look: the case I’m talking about is the one that interprets the overseas killing statute. Let me look again at the NYT article to see.

    Patterico (9c670f)

  88. Okay, I know what you’re talking about now. I’ll look, too.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  89. In other words, apparently all it takes to target an American citizen is terrorist propaganda and a co-conspirator’s word.

    What I am gently suggesting, DRJ, is that we shouldn’t fall in the trap that there should be a law enforcement standard applied to enemy combatants.

    This is how I interpret the problem Rand Paul was highlighting. It is frankly insane to run around a war zone interviewing witnesses (as if they’d survive to testify) and trying to gather the evidence that would be sufficient to convict someone in a US civilian court.

    Besides, someone can obey the Law of Armed Conflict and still quite legally try to kill you. Which makes it legal to kill them. And no one violated a blessed thing.

    The way it appears to me is that the Obama administration, having pressed the issue that it is the default mode of the USG to treat non-state actors as criminal defendants (has anyone removed the yellow crime scene tape from our Benghazi diplomatic compound yet) has discovered it’s impossible to treat war zones like crime scenes. So they’ve declared the poor imitation of police work that is possible in war zones “good enough for government work.”

    And now they’re bringing it back home as the new law enforcement standard.

    If the only “due process” available for a “defendant” in Yemen is Obama weighing the issues with his appointees at and senior political advisers, well then that will have to do. And if that’s now the working definition of “due process” then it ought to be good for the rest of us.

    Steve57 (60a887)

  90. No, I mean this one:

    As they researched the rarely invoked overseas-murder statute, Mr. Barron and Mr. Lederman discovered a 1997 district court decision involving a woman who was charged with killing her child in Japan. A judge ruled that the terse overseas-killing law must be interpreted as incorporating the exceptions of its domestic-murder counterpart, writing, “Congress did not intend to criminalize justifiable or excusable killings.”

    Patterico (9c670f)

  91. Never mind. Found it.

    Patterico (9c670f)

  92. I think this is the blog post that worried Barron and Lederman.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  93. Yes, I think you’re right.

    Patterico (9c670f)

  94. This was another source they relied on, subsequently,

    Other sources of information were also emerging, and one led to a new debate. In April 2011, the United States captured Ahmed Abdulkadir Warsame, a Somali man who worked closely with the al-Qaeda affiliate in Yemen. He was held aboard a naval vessel for more than two months and spoke freely to interrogators, including about his encounters with the former North Carolina man now editing the group’s magazine, Samir Khan.

    But they had already targeted Awlaki in the December 2009 raid.

    narciso (3fec35)

  95. My mistake, Awlaki wasn’t a primary target at that time, someone named Al Ambouri was.

    narciso (3fec35)

  96. Peace in the ME in our lifetime:

    http://www.worldaffairsjournal.org/blog/michael-j-totten/north-ready-blow

    Maybe after Armageddon with the bodies stacked like cordwood.

    gary gulrud (dd7d4e)

  97. Just a couple more thoughts on Emil Kapaun, Catholic chaplains in particular and chaplains of all faiths in general.

    Outside of the USMC, I doubt there’s an organization that punches so far above its weight when it comes to earning military distinctions than the Catholic Church’s Diocese of the Military.

    Unfortunately the Catholic Church is capable of sheltering a Cardinal Mahoney. But despite the smears I doubt the Catholic Church has produced as many child molesters as the NY public school system.

    I know the NY public school system hasn’t inspired as many MoH winners or men who Congress felt compelled to honor for their bravery. Congress actually invented the “four chaplains” medal to honor the men who gave away their own life vests and went down with the transport Dorchester while linking arms and praying for the safety of the troops. It was intended to carry the same weight as the MoH which Congress determined couldn’t be awarded because their heroism was displayed after they enemy had ceased firing.

    And yes, one of the four chaplains was Catholic.

    It’s sad the Cardinal Mahoneys are somehow held up as if they were your standard issue priest. Catholic priests are human and they do fall short at times but almost zero plumb the depths of child molestation.

    More true to form are the Vincent Capodannos. Here’s his Medal of Honor citation:

    The President of the United States
    in the name of The Congress
    takes pleasure in presenting the

    Medal of Honor

    to

    *CAPODANNO, VINCENT R.

    Rank and organization: Lieutenant, U.S. Navy, Chaplain Corps, 3d Battalion, 5th Marines, 1st Marine Division (Rein), FMF. Place and date: Quang Tin Province, Republic of Vietnam, 4 September 1967. Entered service at: Staten Island, N.Y. Born: 13 February 1929, Staten Island, N.Y.

    Citation:
    For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty as Chaplain of the 3d Battalion, in connection with operations against enemy forces. In response to reports that the 2d Platoon of M Company was in danger of being overrun by a massed enemy assaulting force, Lt. Capodanno left the relative safety of the company command post and ran through an open area raked with fire, directly to the beleaguered platoon. Disregarding the intense enemy small-arms, automatic-weapons, and mortar fire, he moved about the battlefield administering last rites to the dying and giving medical aid to the wounded. When an exploding mortar round inflicted painful multiple wounds to his arms and legs, and severed a portion of his right hand, he steadfastly refused all medical aid. Instead, he directed the corpsmen to help their wounded comrades and, with calm vigor, continued to move about the battlefield as he provided encouragement by voice and example to the valiant marines. Upon encountering a wounded corpsman in the direct line of fire of an enemy machine gunner positioned approximately 15 yards away, Lt. Capodanno rushed a daring attempt to aid and assist the mortally wounded corpsman. At that instant, only inches from his goal, he was struck down by a burst of machinegun fire. By his heroic conduct on the battlefield, and his inspiring example, Lt. Capodanno upheld the finest traditions of the U.S. Naval Service. He gallantly gave his life in the cause of freedom.

    Vincent Capodanno has also been proclaimed Servus Dei. So counting Emil Kapaun there are two Catholic chaplains who’ve earned the MoH and are on the path to sainthood.

    Steve57 (60a887)

  98. Regarding chaplains in general, here’s a link to part of a speech by Ronald Reagan about chaplains who responded to the bombing of the Marine barracks in Lebanon.

    http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/2/21/Reagan_Speech_Beirut_Bombing.ogv

    Steve57 (60a887)

  99. Sorry but you have to put up with Jerry Falwell appearing at the start of that vid.

    Steve57 (60a887)

  100. you don’t have to imagine what national soros radio would do if this were bush slaughtering american citizens cause of you just have to remember the performance they put on back in the day

    and then you have to remember that you underwrote that performance with your tax dollars

    but then you have to remember that a neutererd eunuch like john boehner and a susan b. anthony crotch-sniffer like paul ryan are who you’re looking to for to push back against such travesties

    and then you have to look at yourself

    and then you probably need a drink

    bless your heart

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  101. so feets, when are we having that drink?

    redc1c4 (403dff)

  102. 97. The Lutherans and Methodists appear to be on the road to extinction. Give the Catholics their due, they’re survivors.

    gary gulrud (dd7d4e)

  103. Gay Patriot says he’s serious about primarying Grahamnesty, and its personal.

    As a member of a related genus I’m ashamed of him too.

    gary gulrud (dd7d4e)

  104. Mr Gulrud wrote:

    Gay Patriot says he’s serious about primarying Grahamnesty, and its personal.

    So, we’d have a primary battle between the closeted and uncloseted wings of the SC GOP? :)

    That’s awful! I hereby denounce myself!

    The Dana who should be denounced (3e4784)

  105. Well, pikachu, you don’t have to speculate, when we just held, Omar Kadr, they acted like we were jailing mogwai’s,

    narciso (3fec35)

  106. Hi Mr. red we should do that soon for sure

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  107. Fantastic post. I, too, was struck by the oddity of Barron and Lederman learning of the existence of a statute barring Americans from killing each other FROM A BLOGGER.

    Doubly embarrassing because the blogger teaches law in Australia! For anyone interested in the details, see my post:
    http://thebadger14.wordpress.com/2013/03/11/obamas-top-legal-experts-pwned.

    Badger Pundit (d81d3d)


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