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The PJ Tatler

by
Bridget Johnson

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March 6, 2013 - 7:34 am

Attorney General Eric Holder told Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), who has vowed to hold the nomination of CIA director nominee John Brennan over questions about the use of drones, that it’s “possible” the administration could use strikes domestically.

Paul sent a series of three inquires to Brennan and finally got responses Monday from the nominee and Holder.

“As members of this Administration have previously indicated, the U.S. government has not carried out drone strikes in the United States and has no intention of doing so,” Holder wrote. “As a policy matter, moreover, we reject the use of military force where well-established law enforcement authorities in this country provide the best means for incapacitating a terrorist threat.”

“…The question you have posed is therefore entirely hypothetical, unlikely to occur, and one we hope no President will ever have to confront,” he continued. “It is possible, I suppose, to imagine an extraordinary circumstance in which it would be necessary and appropriate under the Constitution and applicable laws of the United States for the President to authorize the military to use lethal force within the territory of the United States. For example, the President could conceivably have no choice but to authorize the military to use such force if necessary to protect the homeland in the circumstances of a catastrophic attack like the ones suffered on December 7, 1941, and September 11, 2001.”

“Were such an emergency to arise, I would examined the particular facts and circumstances before advising the President on the scope of his authority.”

Paul seized on Holder admitting the strikes could occur.

“The U.S. Attorney General’s refusal to rule out the possibility of drone strikes on American citizens and on American soil is more than frightening – it is an affront the Constitutional due process rights of all Americans,” Paul said.

Bridget Johnson is a veteran journalist whose news articles and opinion columns have run in dozens of news outlets across the globe. Bridget first came to Washington to be online editor at The Hill, where she wrote The World from The Hill column on foreign policy. Previously she was an opinion writer and editorial board member at the Rocky Mountain News and nation/world news columnist at the Los Angeles Daily News. She is an NPR contributor and has contributed to USA Today, The Wall Street Journal, National Review Online, Politico and more, and has myriad television and radio credits as a commentator. Bridget is Washington Editor for PJ Media.

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All Comments   (4)
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You note that Eric-Dearest says they '...have no expectations...' of using drones, F-16's, A-10's, or anything else for that matter.
But how many times in the past 4 years or so have we heard various Obama flunkies declare 'we weren't ExPecting' this, that, or the other thing.
You'll know what they're going to do, when they do it , period.
Strangely, DHS is going to start using M-RAPS in training excercises, as they are virtually everywhere in various depots and holding areas, just waiting to be used and they got nowhere to go .
The one I saw in the press release has a really mysterious-looking black paint job and some cute lettering and some badge decals on it......
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
To Eric Holder, "due process" means that he has an appointment with his barber.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
Purely hypothetical-- Don't know the answer. Do not endorse or condone. But if some one thought that a drone was spying on them and they shot it down, what would be the consequences?
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
"The use of drones."

"The use of drones."

"The use of drones."

Are you sick of me writing that? Well, I'm sick of hearing it. Why in THE HELL is this a "new argument"?

They are airplanes. I don't care if the pilots are sitting in an office a hundred miles away. They're still planes carrying explosive projectiles. If it would be illegal/unethical to send a live-piloted fighter or bomber plane to do something (blow up a US citizen, etc.) then it's illegal/unethical to send a small, remote-controlled plane to do it.

It really is that simple.
1 year ago
1 year ago Link To Comment
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