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Mon Jan 14, 2013, 07:36 PM

Obama Administration Won’t Show Secret Legal Opinions For Targeted Killings To US Senator - FDL

Obama Administration Won’t Show Secret Legal Opinions for Targeted Killings to US Senator
By: Kevin Gosztola - FDL
Monday January 14, 2013 3:32 pm

<snip>

Ahead of the confirmation of Deputy National Security Advisor John Brennan to the position of CIA director, US Senator Ron Wyden of Oregon has sent a letter to Brennan asking him to provide Congress access to “secret legal opinions outlining the government’s ability to target and kill Americans believed to be involved in terrorism.”

Wyden, who serves on the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, by law is supposed to provide oversight and have access to classified legal opinions, but, as he shares, the Obama administration has refused to provide him access to a copy of secret legal opinions for targeted killings:


…I have asked repeatedly over the past two years to see the secret legal opinions that contain the executive branch’s understanding of the President’s authority to kill American citizens in the course of counterterrorism operations. Senior intelligence officials have said publicly that they have the authority to knowingly use lethal force against Americans in the course of counterterrorism operations and have indicated that there are secret legal opinions issued by the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel that explain the basis for this authority. I have asked repeatedly to see these opinions, and I have been provided with some relevant information on the topic, but I have yet to see the opinions themselves…


Wyden explained that the decision by the Obama administration to claim intelligence agencies may kill American citizens while at the same time refusing to provide Congress with access to all legal opinions explaining the administration’s understanding of the authority is “alarming and indefensible.”

…There are clearly some circumstances in which the President has the authority to use lethal force against Americans who have taken up arms against the United States, just as President Lincoln had the authority to order Union troops to take military action against Confederate forces during the Civil War. But it is critically important for Congress and the American public to have full knowledge of how the executive branch understands the limits and boundaries of this authority so that Congress and the public can decide whether this authority has been properly defined and whether the President’s power to deliberately kill American citizens is subject to appropriate limitations. I have an obligation from my oath of office to review any classified legal opinions that lay out the federal government’s official views on this issue, and I will not be satisfied until I have received them. So, please ensure that these opinions are provided to me, along with the other members of the Senate Intelligence Committee and our cleared staff, and that we receive written assurances that future legal opinions on this topic will also be provided…


Wyden also criticized...

<snip>

Link: http://dissenter.firedoglake.com/2013/01/14/obama-administration-wont-show-secret-legal-opinions-for-targeted-killings-to-us-senator/


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Arrow 25 replies Author Time Post
Reply Obama Administration Won’t Show Secret Legal Opinions For Targeted Killings To US Senator - FDL (Original post)
WillyT Jan 2013 OP
WinkyDink Jan 2013 #1
OldDem2012 Jan 2013 #2
leftstreet Jan 2013 #3
TwilightGardener Jan 2013 #4
WillyT Jan 2013 #5
OldDem2012 Jan 2013 #8
leftstreet Jan 2013 #9
TheKentuckian Jan 2013 #23
WillyT Jan 2013 #10
OldDem2012 Jan 2013 #21
Angry Dragon Jan 2013 #24
ReRe Jan 2013 #22
rhett o rick Jan 2013 #6
JDPriestly Jan 2013 #14
frylock Jan 2013 #18
Marr Jan 2013 #25
Jefferson23 Jan 2013 #7
Vattel Jan 2013 #11
Historic NY Jan 2013 #15
a2liberal Jan 2013 #12
blkmusclmachine Jan 2013 #13
mountain grammy Jan 2013 #16
NashvilleLefty Jan 2013 #17
frylock Jan 2013 #19
99th_Monkey Jan 2013 #20

Response to WillyT (Original post)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 07:39 PM

1. "the administration’s understanding of the authority is 'alarming and indefensible'.” ITA.

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Response to WillyT (Original post)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 07:42 PM

2. The second we provide ANY intelligence information to the GOP Tea-Nazis is the exact same second....

...we put our people and methods at risk. Just ask Valerie Plame and the 70 people who used to work in her global organization.

Sorry, Wyden, but you and your fellow goose-steppers are just not trustworthy in any sense of the word.

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Response to OldDem2012 (Reply #2)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 07:53 PM

3. Wyden is a Democrat n/t

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Response to OldDem2012 (Reply #2)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 07:55 PM

4. What? Wyden is doing his job here. The administration should provide

the Select Intelligence Committee with the legal findings, that is necessary oversight.

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Response to OldDem2012 (Reply #2)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 07:55 PM

5. WRONG !!! - Apparently You Are Unfamiliar With The System Of American Government...

Wyden, who serves on the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, by law is supposed to provide oversight and have access to classified legal opinions...


This is either UN-Constitutional, or EXTRA-Constitutional.

And John Yoo and the rest of the BUSH Administration goons must currently be laughing their asses off.





AND... Once Again...

They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.

- Benjamin Franklin



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Response to WillyT (Reply #5)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 08:03 PM

8. Skip the lecture, Willy. I'm QUITE familiar with how our system of government should work....

....and how it DOES NOT work when any classified information is shared with the GOPers.

As far as you're concerned, you never miss an opportunity to slam the President and his administration.


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Response to OldDem2012 (Reply #8)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 08:10 PM

9. But you didn't know Wyden is a Democrat n/t

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Response to leftstreet (Reply #9)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 11:14 PM

23. Worse, won't admit it when informed and sticks to the guns.

Further, it isn't okay for a TeaPubliKlan President to ice us out citing "security concerns" so I don't think the argument flies. If people leak shit then you prosecute them and the leaks will cease moving forward.

You sure as shit don't use Deadeye Dick and friends as a cop out for unitary executive bullshit and REFUSE TO PROSECUTE them.

Increasingly, we see a ton of folks with principles and ethics on wheels and wheel are apparently attached to a nitrous cooled, turbo V12 and a 7 speed transmission.

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Response to OldDem2012 (Reply #8)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 08:17 PM

10. When The President And His Administration Are WRONG... I Will Point It Out EVERY FUCKING TIME !!!

Gotta problem with that ?

THEY... work for US.


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Response to WillyT (Reply #10)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 10:40 PM

21. Do you have a problem with the basic fundamentals of security for intelligence operations?.......

...Do you think it was okay when Valerie Plame was outed as a CIA NOC and her entire global network was compromised? Yes or no?

Yes, sigh, they all "work for us", but unless you have a need to know, then you don't have a need to know. How far do you think the Bin Laden mission would have gotten if more than a select few had known about it?

You keep pointing out stuff you know nothing about....but that's your problem, not mine.


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Response to OldDem2012 (Reply #21)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 11:38 PM

24. The law says he has a need-to-know

do you have a problem with the law??

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Response to OldDem2012 (Reply #8)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 10:41 PM

22. Parable of the Ducks:

... If one is a goose-stepper, if one is a yes-man, if one is a squealer/leaker, if one looks like a duck and walks like a duck, one is waddling on the right side of the line in the middle of the road and hardly ever quacks at his Republican President.

Democrats aren't those kinds of ducks... We waddle over on the left side of the line. We love PO. We elected him. Twice. But, we don't keep our mouths shut when we disagree with him. We quack real loud when our ducks look like they are waddling too close to that middle line. That's what makes us so different from the ducks on the right side of the line. We are birds of a feather. We are quackers. We are Democrats.
The End.

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Response to OldDem2012 (Reply #2)


Response to OldDem2012 (Reply #2)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 09:36 PM

14. Wyden is asking to see documents containing legal arguments.

No president is above the law, and it is Wyden's job to help determine whether the president is exceeding his legal authority in what he is doing killing American citizens.

If President Obama is not exceeding his legal authority, if the arguments supporting the program are persuasive, then the President should have no problem producing those legal documents to Senator Wyden.

That the White House is so secretive about those documents suggests that the arguments in those documents have very little merit.

The President should produce the documents to Democratic Senator Wyden.

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Response to OldDem2012 (Reply #2)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 10:18 PM

18. wyden is a democrat. who is the goose-stepper now?

sieg heil.

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Response to frylock (Reply #18)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 11:46 PM

25. Well put. This little moment as poignant an example as I've ever seen of

a mirror being held up to blind loyalty.

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Response to WillyT (Original post)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 08:00 PM

7. This is disguting..keep asking Wyden and do not stop pressuring them. n/t

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Response to WillyT (Original post)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 08:33 PM

11. Congress needs to pass laws to reign in the executive branch.

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Response to Vattel (Reply #11)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 09:43 PM

15. Thats funny when they had yrs to do it they...

abdicated to the executive.

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Response to WillyT (Original post)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 09:21 PM

12. It's 50-dimensional chess

and we're the pawns.

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Response to WillyT (Original post)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 09:23 PM

13. If they're not doing any wrong, then they've got nothing to fear.

Good for the goose, good for the gander.

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Response to WillyT (Original post)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 09:48 PM

16. Thank you Senator Wyden

I sure as hell want to know what gives the government the right to kill anyone without due process as our Constitution so specifically states. And, even at that, I consider the death penalty to be the very definition of "cruel and unusual punishment," but that battle's been lost for a while.

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Response to WillyT (Original post)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 10:04 PM

17. Has Jane Hamsher stopped being crazy?

I used to love her and FDL, but during the ACA debate she pretty much went crazy. After that, she had a vendetta against Obama even though Obama personally thanked FDL for their input (other than Hamsher's craziness regarding generic prescriptions, she and her site did have a lot of valuable input).

Since she began her vendetta, FDL has become totally unreliable. A real shame. I used to love that site. It's too bad they are no longer trustworthy.

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Response to NashvilleLefty (Reply #17)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 10:21 PM

19. do you have an opinion on the secret kill list that a dem on the intel committee..

is being denied access to, or did you just come here to badmouth Hamsher?

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Response to NashvilleLefty (Reply #17)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 10:33 PM

20. Have you stopped shooting the messenger?

apparently not.

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