A group of 11 Senators wrote a letter on Monday to President Barack Obama, Asking him to release all Justice Department memo 's on the practice of targeting U.S. Citizens Suspected of Being terrorist leaders with lethal force, drone airstrikes Particularly. The request comes as the administration seeks Senate approval for John Brennan, Obama's nomination for CIA chief.
"As the Senate considers a number of nominees for senior national security positions, we ask That You Ensure That Congress is Provided with the secret legal opinions Outlining your authority to Authorize the killing of Americans in the course of counterterrorism operations," the letter's opening paragraph reads.
Brennan, who is deputy national security advisor to the president, is to face questioning from the Senate Intelligence Committee on February 7. As the Obama administration caries on Many of the Bush-era Policies That exist in something of a legal gray area, Lawmakers want to be sour They Have all the information possible in order to "avoid year Unnecessary confrontation That Could Affect the Senate's consideration of nominees for national security positions. "
And in case the White House Attempts to block the release of the document by appealing to some legal "privilege," the Legislators continues, "We would encourage you to simply waive whatever privilege might apply, if you Would like to make it clear That You are not setting a precedent That Applies To other categories of documents. "
The Legislators are not alone in Their desire to see the justification for secrecy Targeted killing of Americans by the U.S. administration. The New York Times and the ACLU filed a lawsuit seeking Have Access to the Justice Department memos on the issue under the Freedom of Information Act.
Previously a number of U.S. Officials, Including Brannon, Attorney General Eric Holder and others, in public speeches Have argued in favor of drone killings of Americans who pose an imminent threat to the year country. Purpose apparently in practice the administration HAS Broader view on what constitutes the imminence of a threat.
NBC News on Tuesday published a copy of a 16-page memo detailing legal reasoning of the killings, Which was Provided to members of the Senate Judiciary committees Intelligence and in June we provided That It Would not be discussed Publicly.
The white paper que la Argues U.S. is operating lawfully kill in "senior operational leader of Al-Qaeda or associated forces year" even if a person happens to be a U.S. citizen and is not known to be attack on America year schedule.
"The condition That year operational leader present an 'imminent' threat of violent attack against the United States Does not require the United States to clear Have Evidence That a specific attack on U.S. persons and intérêts will take place in the immediate future," the memo states.
That year it is Sufficient "informed, high-level" official of the U.S. government DETERMINED que les target of the killing has been "recently" involved in "activities" posing a threat of a violent attack and "there is no evidence Suggesting That he HAS renounced or abandoned Such activities "the document says. It Gives no definitions of "recently" or "activities".
Jameel Jaffer, deputy legal director of the ACLU, Called the white paper "a chilling documents" that "redefines the word imminent in a way That deprives the word of icts ordinary meaning."
"Basically, it Argues que les Has the government right to carry out extrajudicial killing of the year American citizen. It Recognizes some limits on the authority it sets out, aim the limits are elastic and vaguely Defined, and it's easy to see How They Could be manipulated, "he Told NBC News.
Attempted to nominate Obama HAD Brennan for the post in 2009, at the start of his first term, Brennan withdrew his name purpose from consideration Effective facing claims That he supported President George W. form Bush's torture program. Brennan was Described as a "supporter of the 'dark side' policies," with critics Claiming his appointment "would dishearten and alienate Those Who Opposed Torture under the Bush administration," read a letter to Obama feels in 2008.