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The due-process-free assassination of U.S. citizens is now reality

Glenn Greenwald
Salon [1]
Oct 1, 2011

It was first reported [2] in January of last year that the Obama administration had compiled a hit list of American citizens whom the President had ordered assassinated without any due process, and one of those Americans was Anwar al-Awlaki. No effort was made to indict him for any crimes (despite a report [3] last October that the Obama administration was “considering” indicting him).

Despite substantial doubt [4] among Yemen experts [5] about whether he even had any operational role [6] in Al Qaeda, no evidence (as opposed to unverified government accusations) was presented of his guilt. When Awlaki’s father sought a court order barring Obama from killing his son, the DOJ argued [7], among other things, that such decisions were “state secrets” and thus beyond the scrutiny of the courts. He was simply ordered killed by the President: his judge, jury and executioner. When Awlaki’s inclusion on President Obama’s hit list was confirmed, The New York Times noted [8] that “it is extremely rare, if not unprecedented, for an American to be approved for targeted killing.”

After several unsuccessful efforts [9] to assassinate its own citizen, the U.S. succeeded today [10] (and itwas [11] the U.S. [12]). It almost certainly was able to find and kill Awlaki with the help of its long-time close friend President Saleh, who took a little time off from murdering his own citizens [13] to help the U.S. murder its. The U.S. thus transformed someone who was, at best, a marginal figure into a martyr, and again showed its true face to the world. The government and media search for The Next bin Laden [14] has undoubtedly already commenced.

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