"But I had somebody last week in Washington from either Georgia or Alabama that was saying, ‘Look, this goes back to we have got to have at least 50 rounds in our magazines because on average that’s about how many it takes to bring down a drone.’ I hope he was kidding, I don’t know for sure." - Representative Louie Gohmert, Confederate States of America on Drones.Glenn Greenwald has declared that President Obama is worse than Dick Cheney. Because Obama, unlike Cheney, never infringed on an American's Constitutional Rights the way Obama did by authroizing a Drone Strike on Anwar al-Awaki (and his son).
What is this? Did the backlash against executive power take this long to foment in Greenwald? Does Glenn Greenwald feel frightened that Obama, who is worse than Cheney, is going to send a Drone Strike against him for speaking out?
What's actually happening is Glenn Greenwald is like John Wayne. Wayne chicken hawked his way out of World War II and in response became a jingoistic warmonger and arch-conservative. Greenwald supported the Phony GWoT and Iraq War Crime and now to make up for it he's become a lunatic anarcho-libertarian declaring all Government Action to be the illegal Use of Force.
Here is the text of what Greenwald, himself, relies upon to excuse his tacit support of the Phony GWoT and the Iraq War.
I did support the war in Afghanistan and, living in New York, believed the rhetoric about the threat of Islamic extremism.
At worst, I was guilty of apathy and passivity. I did nothing for or against it because I assumed that those in positions to exercise adversarial scrutiny – in journalism and politics – were doing that.
Between the president’s performance in the wake of the 9/11 attacks, the swift removal of the Taliban in Afghanistan, and the fact that I wanted the president to succeed,
, and to the extent that I was able to develop a definitive view,The swift removal of the Taliban? He assumed others were scrutinizing the Rush to War. Loyalty to My Country! I deferred to Bush's Judgement.
As the 10 year mark of that bloody debacle hits home, it's amazing to watch those who participated in bilking the American People whitewash themselves of their guilt. I think that in order to prove himself, Greenwald will equate Obama's policies with Hitler at every opportunity. It's a powerful display. Hundreds of Thousands of Sunnis, Shias, Afghans, Pastuns, and others killed during the a Multi-Trillion Dollar Theft of Generations and Glenn will spare no effort over Drones?
Drones are tools and weapons. All the hand-wringing over their use in the Phony GWoT* is a mistake. Drones are a valuable tool which allows infiltration deep into hostile territory for targeted killings. Why send in a SEAL Team or conventional forces when a Drone can accomplish the task?
Drones for Domestic Use are also not a concern. Drones simply fall under the Use of Force and the 4th Amendment.
It makes no difference if a person is killed by bullets, blood chokes, burning or drone strike. Dead is Dead.
And under US Law (reviewed by multiple SCOTUS rulings and written into State Laws) Killing someone is considered the Ultimate Seizure under the 4th Amendment.
For Reference the applicable reviews of the 4th Amendment are:
- Graham v. Conner (1989)
- Tennessee v. Garner (1985)
Drones and their use gained massive blog-o-sphere attention after the Filibuster of the Director of the CIA by Senator Rand Paul. Couch-Borne Commandos and Self-Styled Champions of Liberty,as long as Liberty isn't Black people getting equal rights, like Senator Paul may have a problem with Drones but that's only because they've never been shot at or had to go hands on with a criminal.
Make no mistake if you've allied yourself with Rand Paul on this you're siding with John C. Calhoun before the Civil War.
Republicans and the Right-Wing Fart Bubble only mention Drones as a smear tactic against President Obama.
If there had been a Drone available to use against Christopher Dorner (Or against the Newest Second Amendment Hero Kurt Myers) then it should have been authorized and used.
Remember Dorner had already killed 4 people. He published a manifesto in which he stated he was going to kill as many people as possible. Some only tangentially connected. On the day of his death he shot two more Deputies, killing one, carjacked a couple and holed up in house firing numerous rounds at the surrounding officers.
Against a person, such as Dorner, does Glenn Greenwald or Senator Paul demand we send in single officers one at a time to face them man-o y man-o?
Now, Greenwald did write a column asking whether "[A]n armed drone should be dispatched against Dorner?"
But, while Greenwald believed it to be a good thought experiment about "Due Process" and his belief that Drones represent a massive violation of civil liberties, it highlighted the misunderstanding of seizures under the 4th Amendment (again killing someone being the ultimate seizure) and the Use of Force.
Apparently, Greenwald believes "Due Process" entitles a person to this level of warning:
If you believe that a Government should not be killing it's citizens, ever, that's a legitimate debatable position. But, Drones aren't used for the killing of incarcerated persons.
If you're concerned about Drones being used for surveillance, well unless you are complaining about Cameras in high-crime areas, wire-taps, and police officers with binoculars then it seems an arbitrary concern.
If you believe the President does not have the authority to use Drones for targeted killings overseas then your complaint is with Congress. Force Congress to exert their constitutionally-mandated War Powers Role and have them vote to seize back that power by removing authorization.
There might be legitimate concerns about the Use of Drones and there should be oversight and legal guidelines but they are nothing more than a tool. Every tool can be misused.
*- The War on Terror has a War Crime of Epic Proportions and has lead to thousands of unnecessary deaths and criminal theft of Trillions. As such it should be ended. But, the Drone Strikes aren't the worst thing about it.