Mitt’s Election Would Just Mean Cofer Black Would Get His Kill List Back

Amidst all the partying and pandering, some actual journalism did take place in Charlotte. Gawker’s John Cook asked the following people about whether Americans could trust Mitt Romney to decide which American citizens to assassinate with drones (definitely click through for the video):

  • Kay Hagen, Armed Services Subcommittee Chair on Emerging Threats
  • Carl Levin, Armed Services Committee Chair and ex officio member of Senate Intelligence Committee
  • Cary Booker, Newark Mayor
  • Lanny Davis, Asshole
  • Brad Woodhouse, DNC Spokesperson
  • Chuck Schumer, Judiciary Committee Member
  • Gloria Allred, bane of bmaz’ existence
  • Bill Press, lefty radio personality
  • Unnamed Arizona delegate

Only Bill Press gives an answer that even recognizes the gravity of the answer.

It’s an interesting question, though, for another reason.

If Mitt were elected, then the Kill List’s rightful owner, Cofer Black, might well get it back. The Kill List–like so much else–goes back to the September 17, 2001 “Gloves Come Off” Memorandum of Notification that Black threw together as a wish list of expansive counterterrorism approaches. (Also on there, btw, was partnering with Libya on torture, which Human Rights Watch further exposed the other day and I plan to return to.) And remarkably, when Cofer Black was in charge of the Kill List, it was used more judiciously than Obama has used it (Black had moved out of the Counterterrorism role at CIA before Kamal Derwish became the first American killed in a drone strike on November 5, 2002). And who knows? If Black took responsibility for the Kill List back, he might choose to focus on torture like he did before.

Don’t get me wrong–I don’t want Cofer Black back in any official capacity. But it’s worth remembering that Obama’s Kill List is really just a hand me down from the guy who, along with the Kill List, also instituted torture and partnership with Moammar Qaddafi.

5 replies
  1. allan says:

    Good on Bill Press.
    I’m embarrassed to have donated to Kay Hagan’s 2008 campaign.
    And I’m even more embarrassed to be one of Chuck Schumer’s constituents.

  2. greg brown says:

    It’s telling that only Bill Press responded appropriately to the question: no one should ever have the right to order someone else murdered. That’s the stuff of organized crime.

  3. Stu says:

    I am surprised at this post. You and tens of millions of others who voted for obama should be horrified about how far presidential powers have increased under the current administration. Unthinkable during the bush reign, POTUS is now killing people [including american citizens] without any semblance of due process, and holder is out there saying – well, due process doesn’t mean what you think it means, what WE think it means is that we all get together, a bunch of us really serious people, and we discuss killing these people based on intel provided by God only knows who, and then we do some hand-wringing and ultimately approve a death warrant for someone SUSPECTED of being a terrorist, or aiding terrorists, or in some way shape or form is SOMEHOW maybe/sorta/kinda involved in terrorism.

    Don’t you see, if mitt is elected, he will have these powers at his disposal because of obama — and the courts, congress and the american people have let it happen.

  4. bmaz says:

    @Stu: Well, in some defense, the trend – including the drone killing – were going on under Bush, albeit it to a lesser degree. But that is somewhat offset by torture that has mostly decreased under Obama.

    I guess what I am saying is that saying Obama voters should be ashamed of themselves is somewhere far beyond silly when you consider the alternative was John McCain and the GOP ethos. So, no, not all that ashamed.

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