Senate Intelligence Committee Member Ron Wyden STILL Hasn’t Seen Targeted Killing Memo

Every time I get into debates about the targeted killing program–especially the killing of Anwar al-Awlai–drone boosters insist that the oversight provided by the Intelligence Committees is adequate to the task.

That’s a quaint thought.

Ron Wyden, in a letter preparing John Brennan for his confirmation hearing, reveals that he still hasn’t seen the “secret legal opinions” (plural) authorizing the targeted killing program.

First, as you may be aware, 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 counterterroism operations. Senior intelligence officials have said publicly that they have 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.

[snip]

As I have said before, this situation is unacceptable. For the executive branch to claim that intelligence agencies have the authority to knowingly kill American citizens but refuse to provide Congress with any and all legal opinions hat explain the executive branch’s understanding of this authority represents an alarming and indefensible assertion of executive prerogative.

Remember, Wyden is a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, that group of select men and women with whom the Executive must share even the findings authorizing the most covert operations.

And yet for two years, they have rebuffed Wyden’s questions about their claim to be authorized to kill Americans.

There’s more in the letter demonstrating how arrogant the Obama Administration has been with the purported overseers of its covert operations.

But it doesn’t get much scarier than the fact that the President won’t tell Congress the bases and limits to his authority to unilaterally kill Americans.

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on Reddit0Share on Facebook0Google+0Email to someone

11 Responses to Senate Intelligence Committee Member Ron Wyden STILL Hasn’t Seen Targeted Killing Memo

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 7
  • 8
  • 9
  • 10
  • 11
Emptywheel Twitterverse
emptywheel @micahflee IoPapercuts
3hreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @Tedards @anthony_farda @ColMorrisDavis Who gives a damn? Are you denying his record from that time?? You can cut me out of this at this pt.
3hreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @IWPCHI @mock_kevin Listen, do your own research from here on out, I'm done. Believe whatever you want. From article https://t.co/3Zwgdgx0KV
3hreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @JimWhiteGNV @shannynmoore It is perfect. Wish I had been smart enough to think of that.
3hreplyretweetfavorite
JimWhiteGNV @bmaz @shannynmoore Yes. I'm still laughing.
3hreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz RT @shannynmoore: Does anyone know if #Carly Fiorina is selling off the parts of her aborted campaign? #AskingForAFriend #GOP2016
3hreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @shannynmoore @JimWhiteGNV Ooooh! Best tweet of the day.
3hreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @IWPCHI @mock_kevin Are you kidding? Her team, surrogates+trolls have been attacking Sanders on civil rts for weeks https://t.co/PqC2bNFHKn
3hreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @sbagen Agree. But, dang, Ferguson wasn't real bright how they handled this.
4hreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @IWPCHI @mock_kevin Well, I think she took the low road when she mocked Sanders civil rights beliefs and history. No sympathy.
4hreplyretweetfavorite
JimWhiteGNV So I understand the FBI is trying to finish off the dildo roundup. Hope all goes well and peacefully.
4hreplyretweetfavorite
bmaz @IWPCHI @mock_kevin If she is going to dishonestly play that card, she deserves to have her record during that time described. Its all fair
4hreplyretweetfavorite
January 2013
S M T W T F S
« Dec   Feb »
 12345
6789101112
13141516171819
20212223242526
2728293031