Obama’s Unconstitutional Killing of Awlaki Violates American Principles




http://www.nydailynews.com/opinions/2011/10/02/2011-10-02_an_unconstitutional_killing.html

As President, I would not hesitate to use decisive force to repel any imminent threat. National defense is a primary function of Congress and the commander-in-chief, and, as chief executive, I would carry out my duties as outlined in the Constitution and in accordance with the rule of law.

President Obama apparently believes he is not bound by the Constitution or the rule of law. When it was reported that Anwar al-Awlaki was killed by U.S. drone strikes in Yemen last week, certainly no one felt remorse for his fate. Awlaki was a detestable person we believe helped recruit and inspire others to kill Americans through terrorist acts.

We have to take the fight against terrorism very seriously. In 2001, I supported the authority to capture and kill the thugs responsible for 9/11. In our efforts we must, however, work hard to preserve and respect our great American constitutional principles.

Awlaki was a U.S. citizen. Under our Constitution, American citizens, even those living abroad, must be charged with a crime before being sentenced. As President, I would have arrested Awlaki, brought him to the U.S., tried him and pushed for the stiffest punishment allowed by law. Treason has historically been judged to be the worst of crimes, deserving of the harshest sentencing. But what I would not do as President is what Obama has done and continues to do in spectacular fashion: circumvent the rule of law.

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  6. Glad this guy is dead. Awlaki was a scumbag terrorist conspiring to kill his fellow Americans. Unfortunately this dirtbag was an American citizen who was executed by another American citizen who betrayed his country's constitution.

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  7. This is a DANGEROUS precedent for our society and government to be setting. The US Govt could potentially call any American citizen "terrorist" simply for dissenting with current policy. I'm not for defending this al-Awlaki guy or any other person who goes and orders the killing of American citizens. But the fact of the matter is the guy was an American citizen, and you do not relinquish nor does the US Govt or the President have the legal authority to strip a person of their US citizenship even as an "enemy combatant." It sets a dangerous precedent for future leaders and officials to cite as justification for potentially more horrendous actions against other American citizens, whether they can be considered "terrorist" or not. If one day we see a leader that is anti-Christian, he could simply classify those who practice Bible-based Christianity as "terrorists" and enemies of the State, and using this precedent determine that they can be killed on the spot if they refuse arrest, become "uncooperative" during questioning, or refuse to give up practicing Christianity. Death sounds like a fair punishment for anybody wanting to harm innocent American civilians, but we are a nation of laws and our citizens are entitled to due process, or else we risk the chance of becoming a nation of executive decrees at the President's whim and fancy. We've seen leaders in history abuse power before, even at the expense of their own populations' lives; Americans should not be so arrogant or ignorant to think that our leaders won't repeat that same practice. Remember, "absolute power corrupts absolutely." Is US citizenship just a cheap label that has no merit or dignity to it? Timothy McVeigh was given a trial before execution; Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab (aka the "Underwear Bomber") is being given a trial; Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan (the "Ft. Hood Shooter") is being given a military trial. We are allowing our executive office dangerous authority to proceed with this kind of precedent of killing US Citizens, whether they have become radicalized terrorist or not. Where is the formal declaration of war? Or has the US Govt merely implied that its war now includes US Citizens, whether or not they've been convicted of terrorist activity? The problem with this issue is that it requires too much thinking and adherence to legal principle for most people to figure out reasonably. Most people are not intelligent enough to think past their own emotions before they consider such matters as setting precedents or the potential for abuses of power by those in office. Too many people are cold enough to think that "might is right"; "shoot now, ask questions later"; and "we'll worry about that when we cross that bridge". America must be vigilant and proactive about its liberties and laws, and not simply reactive or else it may be too late to turn back the tide once you've turned the levee loose.

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    • @FreedomJoe

      Well Joe has it exactly right here. The problem is that the news wants to focus on what is going for that day, or week, in general. They are not thinking on terms of years, decades, or centuries. Because of this one act of tyranny, which is a major precedent if it is ever used again, Ron Paul can clearly invision a future where America is no longer free. They are slaves to banks and central planners once the monetary system collapses. The only thing required for the entire US monetary system to collapse as of the date of this posting is for the Asian bloc nations to completely discontinue trading in dollars and using it as the reserve currency.. This act alone would have brutal reprucissions overnight for all travel, and cause a chain reaction that may create hyperinflation. This is only the beginning. If our lenders overseas start to understand that we are continuing to print money with no improvement, it will result in them either not accepting these new dollars at all (because we are intentionally devaluing the currency as monetary policy), or valuating them at far less value. This year alone, we have seen a 10% drop in the value of the dollar.

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    • @FreedomJoe Hi Freedom Joe. I agree with everything you are saying. Our countries freedoms, liberties, and soverignty have slowly been eroding since FDR. During the Industrial Revolution our country was the most prosperous nation in the world. We slowly removed our tariffs which protected our manufacturing. Than, Congress enacted Free trade agreements. Now China's economy is flurishing. And, why? Because of cheap labor, very little regulations, and Chinesse currency manipulation. Big govenment republicans love this.

      So far, the only information that is not controlled is the Internet. But, from it's inception the media is slanted and doesn't educate people about our Constitution.

      When Congress gave Presidents the executive order powers, this made them dictators bypassing Congressional approvals and oversight. Where was the outcry by the public about this? The burying of many bills within a bill needs to stop.

      Ron Paul is the only candidate who can reverse and correct many years of unconstitutional policies.

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  8. This is a DANGEROUS precedent for our society and government to be setting. The US Govt could potentially call any American citizen "terrorist" simply for dissenting with current policy. I'm not for defending this al-Awlaki guy or any other person who goes and orders the killing of American citizens. But the fact of the matter is the guy was an American citizen, and you do not relinquish nor does the US Govt or the President have the legal authority to strip a person of their US citizenship even as an "enemy combatant." It sets a dangerous precedent for future leaders and officials to cite as justification for potentially more horrendous actions against other American citizens, whether they can be considered "terrorist" or not. If one day we see a leader that is anti-Christian, he could simply classify those who practice Bible-based Christianity as "terrorists" and enemies of the State, and using this precedent determine that they can be killed on the spot if they refuse arrest, become "uncooperative" during questioning, or refuse to give up practicing Christianity. Death sounds like a fair punishment for anybody wanting to harm innocent American civilians, but we are a nation of laws and our citizens are entitled to due process, or else we risk the chance of becoming a nation of executive decrees at the President's whim and fancy. We've seen leaders in history abuse power before, even at the expense of their own populations' lives; Americans should not be so arrogant or ignorant to think that our leaders won't repeat that same practice. Remember, "absolute power corrupts absolutely." Is US citizenship just a cheap label that has no merit or dignity to it? Timothy McVeigh was given a trial before execution; Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab (aka the "Underwear Bomber") is being given a trial; Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan (the "Ft. Hood Shooter") is being given a military trial. We are allowing our executive office dangerous authority to proceed with this kind of precedent of killing US Citizens, whether they have become radicalized terrorist or not. Where is the formal declaration of war? Or has the US Govt merely implied that its war now includes US Citizens, whether or not they've been convicted of terrorist activity? The problem with this issue is that it requires too much thinking and adherence to legal principle for most people to figure out reasonably. Most people are not intelligent enough to think past their own emotions before they consider such matters as setting precedents or the potential for abuses of power by those in office. Too many people are cold enough to think that "might is right"; "shoot now, ask questions later"; and "we'll worry about that when we cross that bridge". America must be vigilant and proactive about its liberties and laws, and not simply reactive or else it may be too late to turn back the tide once you've turned the levee loose.

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