People in other countries are also people. They have the same reactions and emotions that we would when a foreign entity blows up their businesses, families, and friends. We have so far been lucky that none of our victims have had the military power and political will to retaliate in the vicious and violent manner that we would. That will not always be the case, and I do not look forward to the day when our own brutality is visited upon us.
But it suffers from something too common around here - dispassion. Looking at the wider, geopolitical implications, a step back from the facts and keeping things on the level of "people" - not that person.
I read your comment first, then dived into the article. I expected to agree with you, but I just felt mounting horror, outrage and a realisation that things are beyond a line I never knew existed. So here is my comment
Jesus H Fucking Christ on a Stick! We are blowing up American Citizens sitting in cafes and legally it's "untouchable". Are we that fucking removed from reality that its ok to murder people with no trial or comeback. It seems its ok to blow away the son and grandson of other country's government ministers and not expect a war, a prison sentence, or even a mention on CNN
Are we that fragile as a civilisation that the tiny amount of damage terrorism presents is actually a threat? What did I miss - I thought we had industry, welfare, science and ingenuity. Stop murdering people.
I am writing to my MP but mostly I would like some figures - there was a twitter thing that reported gun murders. Can we do the same for drone murders?
If that's not anti-constitutional, your constitution ain't worth shit.
If it is anti-constitutional, your system of "checks and balances" ain't worth shit.
Either way something fundamental is very broken there.
[Edit: Utah's house, not the US congress]
(EDIT: In case this looks like an argument it isn't, parent's comment originally referred to "our congress".)
The most extremist power any political leader can assert
is the power to target his own citizens for execution
without any charges or due process, far from any
battlefield. The Obama administration has not only
asserted exactly that power in theory, but has exercised
it in practice.
Dear Mr Franklin, Sorry its taken me a while to catch
up. I promise to stay on the ball from now on.
What is this referring to? Google brings up nothing at all on this paragraph.
I feel weird linking to an image macro on HN, but it is sadly relevant.
That's not what was done with Al Awalki. He was on a kill list because it wasn't possible to bring him in alive, because he was hiding in Yemen. The Constitution has never protected fugitives who hide out in order to evade capture and a trial (the old west "wanted: dead or alive").
The Constitution just guarantees you "due process." This almost always means a trial, but it does not mean that the government has to give you a trial regardless of the circumstances.
Do we have rules about foreign assassinations and their legality?
I seem to recall in the Clinton years it was considered a big deal to snuff someone in another nation.
Often, we've relied on foreign intelligence services -- like Mossad -- to do it for us.
I have no idea what I think about droning, except that in my experience, technological ability always takes precedence over legal and moral fictions.
In other words, if we can do it, other guys can do it, and so we use it to keep up.
There are no words that can express how I feel about this, and at the same time are suitable for this fine audience.
Once the whole world is a battlefield then everyone is on the field of battle. Interestingly enough it takes congress to declare war so in effect what we've had here is a very blatant power grab, an invocation of emergency procedures in the name of National Security. How aptly the National Security Agency seems named now, don't you think.
Obviously there is the TIDE list that gets people restricts their right of travel (no-fly lists - (I wonder does this cover getting on a boat or is it just that specific mode of international travel - (thank you for reading this far))). But there must also be a shorter "these people are really bad and must be taken out list" and that's what these people are on. Modulo the odd innocent bystander, and error be it human operator or machine or intelligence.
So it's not murder, it's 21st century warfare and these are the enemy.
That doesn't mean it doesn't stink to high hell. And if they was any justice in the world the people who set up and enable these unjust extra-judicial killings with there oh so pat cover story and layers and layers of secrecy upon secrecy would get their just desserts in turn.
† it's not 'murder' when they do it
The United States has declare a very few wars and fought many more, of varying degrees of length and intensity.
they have an amazing datastore of all of the known drone strikes
if you click into a specific country,
they give detailed accounts of the events,
like location, and how many dead,
down to the number of civilians versus presumed militants,
and also a detailed description of what occurred
i remember reading of one where the drone bombed a shelter with presumed militants inside, one person survived, crawled out of the wreckage and began to run into the desert,
the drone circled around and tracked and followed the man for twenty minutes as he ran away and finally shot him dead
there are so many that I had to go into their archive to find the one spoken about in this article,
and it is a very detailed account:
October 14 2011
♦ 7-9 people killed, including 16-year and 17 year old boy
♦ 2 teenage children reported killed
A second drone attack then struck either a vehicle or a restaurant area. PBS Frontline later filmed at the scene of the attack, the footage showing the ruined foundations of a small building along with a nearby crater. Abdel- Rahman Anwar al Awlaki, the 16-year old son of al-Awlaki, died... the article is written by NASSER al-AWLAKI... Also initially reported killed was militant Ibrahim al-Bana. Doubts have since been raised about al-Bana’s death. A statement from Abdel-Rahman’s family read, ‘he left with some friends for dinner under the moonlight when an American missile landed, killing Abdel-Rahman and his friends‘. In a separate statement, the family said: ’On October 14th, 2011 Abdulrahman, along with some of his tribe’s youth have gone barbecuing under the moonlight. A drone missile hit their congregation killing Abdulrahman and several other teenagers’. A second teenager and family member, Ahmed Abdel-Rahman al-Awlaki, 17, is known to have died. Five to seven others were also killed, including Sarhan al-Qusa (aka Farhan al Quso) brother of AQAP leader Fahd al-Qusa or Quso, according to a member of Awlaki’s tribe. Reuters later claimed that the dead men were planning to renounce al Qaeda before they were killed. Elders claimed that four other Awlaki tribal members died in the strike.
Two weeks after the strike, AQAP released leaflets stating that Ibrahim al-Bana had not been killed. Ansar al-Sharia also reported in its second October newsletter that Bana’s death was ‘a lie’. In a statement, Yemen security officials said the air strike was among five that targeted al Qaeda positions in Shabwa, adding that al-Bana was wanted internationally for planning attacks both inside and outside Yemen. ‘He was one of the group’s most dangerous operatives,’ it said. The Washington Post reported that it was JSOC rather than the CIA which carried out the attack:
When pressed on why the CIA had not pulled the trigger, US officials said it was because the main target…an Egyptian named Ibrahim al-Banna, was not on the agency’s kill list. The Awaki teenager, a US citizen with no history of involvement with al Qaeda, was an unintended casualty. In interviews, senior US officials acknowledged that the two kill lists don’t match, but offered conflicting explanations as to why.
In April 2012 the Toronto Star featured an interview with Nasser al-Awalaki, grandfather of Abdel-Rahman and former Yemen government minister. In it he said that former Yemen President Saleh had sent him a message insisting that he had had no role in his grandson’s death: ‘Tell Dr. Nasser I swear to God that I have nothing to do with the killing of his son.’Nasser al-Awlaki also said he would be taking legal action: ‘I am only a university professor and I’m not the kind of guy who would enlist tribal people. My only chance now is to go to court and I hope as far as Abdulrahman at least, they will be fair to us. They cannot claim he’s collateral damage.’
In April 2013 Jeremy Scahill added further controversy to the attack, reporting:
A former senior official in the Obama administration told me that after Abdulrahman’s killing, the president was “surprised and upset and wanted an explanation.” The former official, who worked on the targeted killing program, said that according to intelligence and Special Operations officials, the target of the strike was al-Banna, the AQAP propagandist. “We had no idea the kid was there. We were told al-Banna was alone,” the former official told me. Once it became clear that the teenager had been killed, he added, military and intelligence officials asserted, “It was a mistake, a bad mistake.” However, John Brennan, at the time President Obama’s senior adviser on counterterrorism and homeland security, “suspected that the kid had been killed intentionally and ordered a review. I don’t know what happened with the review.”‘
And in May 2013 US Attorney-General Eric Holder told US lawmakers Abdulrahman was ‘not specifically targeted by the United States’. In a letter, Holder explained Anwar al Awlaki was a legitimate target and that ‘[US] citizenship alone does not make such individuals immune from being targeted’. He said three other US citizens, including Abdulrahman, had been killed by US drones during Obama’s presidency.
Abdulrahman’s grandfather discusses his death in a July 2012 interview for ACLU and CCR
Type of action: Air assault, drone strike
Location: Azan, Shabwa
References: CNN, GlobalPost, Business Insider, Yemen Post, ABC, AFP (via Taiwan News), Reuters,Press TV, AP, Washington Post, Long War Journal, LA Times, Reuters, Yemen Post, Time Magazine, Antiwar.com, Empty Wheel, Salon, Al-Awlaki family statement, EmptyWheel, Toronto Star, PBS Frontline, CNN, The Nation (US), Department of Justice
i was first turned onto this site from an app that attempted to text you every time a new drone strike was posted to this site,
the APPL app store refused its submission a number of times citing "The features and/or content of your app were not useful or entertaining enough"
This is one of the big reasons I went with Android - I don't want to be blocked from doing what I define as "useful or entertaining" on my own hardware. [To be clear - I'm not saying Android is perfect, secure, private or anything else.]
Here is an interview with Josh Begley, the man behind that account:
The crux of the debate is how much an "american citizen" can claim the protection of that citizenship while waging war against the U.S. and evading attempts to bring him to justice for a decade.
Being an American citizen entitles you to due process. Not "a court trial no matter what the circumstances," but some level of process appropriate to the circumstances.
> Stop murdering people.
It's only murder when people who are part of the same social compact and subject to the same law kill each other. When one group of people organized into a state kills people in another group, that's not "murder" it's exercise of the sovereign right of nations.
This applies to Anwar Al-Awlaki himself, and even then the constitutionality of the killing seems highly suspect to me. But his son (the author's granson), Abdulrahman Al-Awlaki, was also killed by a drone strike in Yemen. Nobody has publicly stated a justification for Abdulrahman's death. He was simply an American citizen traveling in the country his family came from, as far as we know.
On the other hand, the drone program in essence demands that the US conduct a long-running campaign of assassination. I might not have a moral problem with that in the specific case of actual, bona fide Al Qaeda personnel, but surely this can't be how we deal with all our adversaries moving forward?
I want to make sure we're on the same page here. A child who is not on any kill lists, a boy who according to the laws of our land does not have the capacity to make rational decisions when it comes to having sex, looking at people have sex, drink alcohol, vote, smoke tobacco, rent a car, drive a car, I can go on but it's getting boring? A child who isn't able to do any of those things ... can nevertheless wage war against the US and be executed for treason without due process or even a sham trial? You even get those in Russia, of all places.
Oh wait. They didn't accuse him of treason. Collateral damage then? I guess that's OK.
I would say something offensive that might be construed as treasonous at this point, but the NSA is reading.
No, there was no indication. There was also no acknowledgement, apology, or explanation either. That's what the article is about.
What's done is done. The child is dead. What the government owes every citizen at this point is an explanation of what happened and a clear process to make sure it never happens again.
Instead, there's just silence.
Apparently you can just be killed by the US government for being in the wrong place at the wrong time, even though you're a citizen and deserve proper due process?
That's my take at this point. I wonder at what point the US government will start targeting individuals on US soil? We already have drones flying above our heads here at home. How soon until you're the collateral damage?
You can't blame the government for not giving due process to someone killed in a military strike where the government didn't even know he was going to be there.
> I wonder at what point the US government will start targeting individuals on US soil?
The slippery slope argument here just doesn't hold up. It's not the first time in history an American has been killed collaterally in a military strike targeted at a foreign enemy. Thousands of American citizens, including POW's, were killed in Hiroshima: http://www.people.com/people/archive/article/0,,20118397,00..... It's regrettable and unfortunate, but not a sign of some slippery slope leading to drone strikes on U.S. soil.
The fact is that the rules are different for engagements abroad versus engagements at home and always has been. Not just for the U.S., but for every country in the history of the world.
Edit: I don't completely love focusing on the technology behind killing innocent people in war. Whether the planes are piloted or not, people sitting in cafes, elementary schools, orphanages... get killed because we no longer arrest bad guys. We try to blow them up.
That's the problem. Americans are very sheltered from the wars they start for the most part, so they let their government do whatever. Americans aren't still thinking 9/11 happened because they hated them for their freedoms, do they?
That said, where the public stands has relatively little to do with the US's actions. the Iraq and Afghanistan invasions were knee-jerk actions made supported by people who were acting under information that later turned out to be totally false. The current drone strikes weren't ever a serious ballet issue. In fact, I daresay most conflicts in which the US has been engaged in the last 40 years were initiated with very little regard as to public consent beyond "will they riot if we do this?"
Have some personal accountability.
Or else, you are not free, nor a democracy.
While I agree with you, it is more complex than I simplified it. It is that general apathy of americans that lets administrations get so out of control.
Party sizes vary greatly after elections which means politicians feel the consequences of their actions. It is not perfect of course, but it is better.
The weird thing is that it is possible to have multiple parties in the US, but they never get enough votes. This makes it seem like their has to be a lot of corruption.
Countries where multiple parties feasibly compete have the possibility, at least, of a disruptive new party taking share.
The American system, like the American ISP market in most of the country, is so rigged for the two corrupt incumbents that you basically always have a choice of light dark gray or dark light gray.
I live in Japan where we have a wide range of competing ISPs and political parties. Both Internet service and political representation are vastly better than in my native USA.
(Admittedly, the former more so than the latter...)
he did indicate he would continue President Obama’s controversial drone strike program against alleged terrorist suspects.
In human rights abuses, illegal wars, prison population, and all of those other great things that you're all so damn proud of.
My friend, have you considered the horrors of an America faced with a credible threat and given the opportunity to justify real, total war against an opponent capable of the same?
I do not wish to live in that world.
The number of humans on Earth that want to kill large numbers of other humans is exceedingly, vanishingly small.
Most people just don't want to blow people up, no matter how angry they are.
If this were false, we'd see bombings, shootings, and poisonings constantly all over the country. We don't.
I grew up in Detroit. Trust me when I say that this country has no shortage of machine guns.
If these sorts of things were being stopped by the NSA's dragnet, they wouldn't have claimed to have stopped "dozens" of attacks with their surveillance. They'd have claimed "hundreds" or "thousands". They didn't.
There just aren't that many people who wish civillian populations harm, even if their government did blow up their loved ones.
The typical reaction of a nation is not "Oh well, we better stop doing that then".
Just to give you some perspective: I live in Poland. 20% of the population - 6 million (not 10,000) civilians - was killed in WW2 by Germans and Russians. Our neighbors. We lived through it. We have quite good relations with both countries. Now - forgive me the language - but how many Poles look at your 9/11 - it's a non-event. And you go like crazy on a 1000-year war with billion Muslims because some idiots blew up a couple of buildings. I'm sorry but that's how I and I'm sure many in Europe perceive it. Completely and totally overreacted. Just bring the responsible before the Court give them the due process and hand them or something.
You are totally inexperienced as a nation with just 200 years of history with the phenomenon called "shit happens" and totally, totally overreact to the point it just looks comical. You are like this big fat guy with a machine guy at a bar doing shooting-frenzy trying to kill a fly.
To use an analogy, it looks like in the US they would have tortured Breivik for years before letting him to go to face a Trial but without a defense attorney. It's another extreme. Taking into account that the US is the world superpower, much more concerning one.
EDIT: Now thinking about it, Breivik spent a lot of time in France. It's a stretch, but if the Norway had the US attitude, it would just invade France now, lol. My point is that they are really, really over the top with that "terrorism" thing.
The Unites States has a mentality of punishing the perpetrators, often very hard, in order to gain revenge and maybe act as a deterrent to others. This is why the US is one of the onlycountries in the world that use capital punishment, and the country in the world where most people are in prison.
Unfortunately research shows that this doesn't work, as evidenced by crimerates and homicides in the US. Norway takes a different approach, and instead of looking for revenge they ask "how do we prevent this from happening again". This is why there is no capital punishment, why you see drug offenders in nice rehabilitation homes, and why Breivik was convicted like any other murderer within the Norweigan system.
The Norweigan system works, and the American doesn't. Just look at the numbers.
I am a firm believer in the Norwegian style of punishment and rehabilitation. The goal of a justice system is not to punish or get revenge but to create a safe society with little crime, and if rehabilitation does that (which is what I believe) then we should have more rehabilitation.
That might not work with suicide bombers. Just a thought.
The problem here that the "Fight for what's mine" mentality is a core of American society. If there was a credible threat to America, the 310 million of them would band together stronger than ever before to unleash a horrible, all consuming war.
As a side note on the Middle East. I think that the US deliberately destabilize the situation in the region, preparing the ground for the Iran takeover.
What is the much more efficient boundary of government that is not a nationstate ?
Something is going to break. And we generally wake up and fix thing only after things break.
I say another 5-10 manning/snowden type events before we transition from the united states of america to the the united states of earth.
National identities, as complex as they are and as huge an improvement over religions as they are to serve for the above purpose, are still artificial constructs that in many ways create arbitrary boundaries, introduce and perpetuate differences that are not necessary to exist between people and in some cases have even been manipulated and used by governments for political reasons.
Last I checked they immigrated too.
But if a person says the phrase "I'm American", what's your first guess - that he is referring to the USA, to Canada or to Mexico?
Speaking as a Canadian, I do not call myself an 'American', even though my country is certainly part of North America.
I understand that "Americans" is a shorthand for "USA Habitant", in the minds of a lot of people, mainly because USA is the dominant culture in this side.
But is like ask: "I'm Asian" and asume is about a chinese.
The big difference in this case is that we have tacit (or maybe even explicit) consent from the Yemeni government to hunt Al Qaeda. So the representatives of the people of that country are allowing us to kill these people basically on their behalf. (which doesn't make it OK, but is a major differnce)
It's not just that we are bullying Yemen into allowing us to bomb people in their country - it's that the Yemini authorities (and probably most of the population) don't want these people operating in their country but they lack the resources and infrastructure to stop them themselves; and that's where we come in.
Bare in min that we also give Yemen a lot of military aid so that we DON'T HAVE TO come in and do their law enforcement for them. In this case that wasn't sufficient and we intervene on their behalf
To make your example comparable you would need to have a person that is evading US authorities, operating in the US, and that we are completely incapable of stopping (and only some other country could do it for us?)
Here is why: Yemeni government != Yemeni people. The authorities, probably, don't mind letting US drones kill people, simply because it won't be them getting killed.
Imagine the US military firing tear gas and water cannons on protesters in Turkey and saying "It's OK, your government gave us permission". The major problem in the Middle East is that, the governments can get away with not giving a fuck about the people.
I think you're having reading comprehension issues. It's not just that the gov't are requesting help. The reason we are involved in Yemen is because the Yemini gov't is incapable of exerting it's own will b/c they are weak and poor. Their interests are also strongly tied to our interests - so that's why we intervene.
Your example has is not at all analogous. The Turkish gov't is not incapable of tear gassing and water cannoning protesters, so they fail the first criteria of being incapable of carrying out their will. The example also fails the second criteria for intervention - that it's strongly in the US's interest.
"Yemeni government != Yemeni people"
Who else can you appeal to in Yemen to get permission to operate drones?
And are you seriously suggesting that the Yemeni people are supporting Al Qaeda? If they are, then they become the "enemy".
The way it works for other nations is we tell them:
1 - You will fight Al Qaeda in our country
2 - If you are incapable, we will help you do it by providing military aid.
3 - If you are still incapable we will us our own armed forces to make sure you are able to.
4 - If you are not willing to fight Al Qaeda or are actively defending them they we will intervene anyways.
The last point either leads to the case of the Taliban where we destroy them because they are defending Al Qaeda, or to Pakistan where they are forced to accept our help.
Aw, downvoted, for pointing out that the US carries out drone assaults in sovereign territories without consent.
Well, bury your head in the sand all you like.
Many people around the world would say that one of those days was September 11, 2001.
And on the following day, we'll bomb the everliving christ out of the people we think are responsible, and on some day hence, we will be bombed in response.
The wheel turns--might as well get into the drone and bomb business. :(
Just before people rewrite history, afganistan and iraq governments had nothing to do with 9/11.
Beating the USA over the head post-911 with the club of having assisted anti-Soviet fighters in the 1970s and 1980s makes as much sense as castigating Italy's WW1-era allies and people like Hemingway in the late 1930s for having come to Italy's aid twenty years earlier.
Harbouring criminals is a reason to declare war?
The argument remains the same, I drew a parallel with a current situation to highlight how ridiculous it was to blame the Taliban for 9/11 (as they had NOTHING to do with it). Just as Russia had nothing to do with Snowden (except that he's there).
Tin-foil hat aside, it strikes me as oddly coincidental that the folks who use drones these days to kill around the planet with impunity are the same folks who had several allegedly drone controlled airliners carry out an attack, garnering public support for several illegal wars.
Just saying, it's all mightily convenient. As ever.
As to foreign bombers... So? Most Americans agree drone strikes are a good thing, so surely they'd still be a good thing when they start happening on US soil?
If you don't, then I applaud your critical thinking.
I don't think a single word that comes out of the US (and UK) gov't is truthful. Why would they be truthful about 9/11?
Means, motive, and opportunity: Who'd consider 3000 dead Americans a reasonable price to pay for carte blanche to make a pushbutton military coup possible in this country?
The US already controls, coerces, or mutually cooperates with a large number of other sovereign states (as we've seen with this whole Snowden airspace thing, or the global surveillance networks, et c).
Such an action would place a person or group that was able to exert leverage over the majority of US persons high in the running for "able to control the majority of humans on Earth".
Not a bad prize, that.
What an utterly ridiculous statement.
The entire premise of this article is one of the oldest motives for violence in the history of the human race.
Or did you somehow think this was the first middle eastern child killed by America?
Analogy: a wasps best appears on your porch. Occasionally, you get stung.
Do you a) put up with being stung once in a while or b) whack the ever living shit out of the nest with a stick, knowing retaliation is the likely outcome, and wait to see what happens?
In spite of what the US media liked to portray, OBL was an intelligent man, well versed in both war and politics.
So no, there is no motive, unless you're suggesting that OBL's goal was to get Afghanistan and Iraq invaded, and millions of Arabs killed?
"[It is] easy for us to provoke and bait this administration. All that we have to do is to send two mujahidin to the furthest point east to raise a piece of cloth on which is written al-Qaeda, in order to make the generals race there and cause America to suffer human, economic, and political losses ... This is in addition to our having experience in using guerrilla warfare and the war of attrition to fight tyrannical superpowers, as we, alongside the mujahidin, bled Russia for 10 years, until it went bankrupt and was forced to withdraw in defeat." - OBL, 2004
So yes, it's very fair to suggest that his goal was to get Afganistan and Iraq invaded given that his formative years were spent, in his mind, bringing down the Soviet Union by provoking them into a protracted and costly battle in Afganistan. Al Queda is responsible for killing thousands of Arabs directly. It's no stretch to think that he didn't mind seeing a few million killed, like all sorts of utopian-totalitarian ideologues who preceded him, in the cause of bringing about 1000 years of utopia on earth through the establishment of a new Caliphate.
OBL was an intelligent man, like Hitler or Stalin were intelligent men. Ruthless, but almost impossibly warped in his views on why the present he lived in didn't fit his own fantasy.
"It is enough to know that the economy of all Arab countries is weaker than the economy of one country that had once been part of our world when we used to truly adhere to Islam. That country is the lost Al Andalus... No Muslim territory should ever become non-Muslim...Let the whole world know that we shall never accept the tragedy of Andalusia." - OBL, 2004
There's your motive if you're looking for one. Spain defeated the Muslim invaders who had conquered part of it 500 years ago and since it's now richer than the whole Muslim world put together it proves that... wait... what?
Again, why break the habit of a lifetime?
"Live and let live" is a concept which no longer seems to be part of popular cognition.
And the analogy still holds.
It's remarkable that this interview with Richard Clarke only has 53,000 hits- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bl6w1YaZdf8
It's sad that people just ignored the chief of counter terrorism on 9/11 stating that CIA knew terrorists were in the US planning an attack and purposely withheld it from the White House in an effort to develop sources. Not to mention ignoring the involvement of Saudi Arabia.
- Lots of CIA agents who have testified that they knew about the hijackers but were prevented from stopping them, e.g.
- High level FBI agents who have testified they would have stopped the attacks, but were purposely kept in the dark.
- The fact that on the morning of 9/11 the guy who wired 100k to Muhammed Atta to pay for the hijackings was having breakfast with the two guys who ran the official investigation into the attacks.
All this stuff about whether it was or wasn't a controlled demolition is just a red herring.
Then why wasn't he placed on trial for this crime?
He's still sitting in Guantánamo, supposedly "awaiting trial".
(I don't even speculate "who did what, exactly" -- but that this thing is fishy as fuck, and has been from day one, is undeniable. You can cover your ears and scream tinfoil all you want, but that doesn't answer the gaping questions. Apply Occam's razor, how about that? The possibility that the laws of physics were suspended that day is very slim, even more slim than aliens using lizards to convince mice to hypnotize humans to do it. Logic!)
The physics of a controlled demolition is fairly simple.
Take out or weaken one a few pillars and the weight of the building will do the rest.
Why would it not possible for a fire and/or an explosion to do exactly the same thing?
Lets assume it was a controlled demolition.
Now answer these obvious questions that this would raise.
Did all the people in the building not see the dynamite strapped to the pillars?
Did they not see the 100s of meters of wires?
When did the guys that wired the build do the wiring?
Was it during working hours or after hours?
How come no camera, person or security guard managed to see them?
Because it would very likely tip over, or at least veer to one direction, instead of folding neatly into itself.
What makes you assume dynamite?
What makes you assume wires?
Who knows? When did the dude who sucked at flying sports planes learn to fly a boeing so well? How did a passport of one of the attackers allegedly get found on the scene? If you want a conspiracy theory, try a bunch of guys taking down THREE high rises with TWO airplanes and a bunch of box cutters. Hah.
How is that relevant?
How come no camera, person or security guard managed to see them?
Are you say it's not possible to deposit bags of C4 (etc.) with remote triggers in the right spots even just 10 minutes before impact, and safely get out? Or, to be alone in a room just enough to hide it in the ceiling or walls or wherever? I'm not saying it's easy, but it seems easier than even just flying a boeing so well without practical experience, or such a tall skyscraper folding neatly just by pure luck, and both of that happening twice on one day.
I'm adamant that we're being lied to about things related to these attacks, but making things up to fill the vacuum of information is behavior that belongs back in the middle ages.
I'm glad you're starting to get a handle on this thing called Physics.
Parts of the official story are perhaps hard to believe or lack credibility. But it was not an ordinary event, it was an extraordinary one meaning that we'll have a lot of unanswered questions and very little precedent. In the absence of certainty we fall back on our default positions. Some people could never imagine a bunch of foreigners hate the US enough and have the skills and ingenuity to pull something like this off. Only we have agency, others do not. Some people blame everything bad that happens on their government. In fact for some it's more palatable in a way to think that your government did it.
Anyway, we know you know the truth - but can you please keep your opinions to yourself, it only serves to derail the actual discussion at hand; but who knows, maybe that's your intention.
The official story is an obvious lie.
Two wars in fact.
> It's enough to know that the government and the media lied their asses off
Life doesn't offer up points for being thoughtful and wise after the event.
The USA invaded IRAQ looking for WMD and trying to blaming Saddam Hussein for 9/11.
Even before the war started it was a well-known fact there were no WMDs and Saddam Hussein had no links to 9/11 and anyone who thought about this rationally knew an invasion was not a good idea.
But as you said the government and the media lied their asses off and the unwashed masses where taken in hook line and sinker.
The majority of the citizens of USA, UK, Australia and Spain all supported the plan to invade IRAQ.
Move on a decade and those same citizens now think it was a big mistake.
Well it too late. You can't put the genie back into the bottle.
Through their collective stupidity, the citizens of the USA, UK, Australia and Spain will be paying for that big mistake for years to come.
What's unfortunate the ripple effect of that big mistake affects us all.
Fires have never before or since destroyed a steel skyscraper.
The team that investigated the collapse were kept away from the crime scene.
By the time they published their inconclusive report in May, 2002, the evidence had been destroyed.
Why did the government rapidly recycle the steel from the largest and most mysterious engineering failure in world histor? [..] ?
Unless you replicate all the aspects of the event that statement is meaningless.
What other steel building has been hit by a 300 tonne aircraft, fully loaded with jet fuel and flying at full speed?
It is actually pretty easy to understand why these steel buildings fell.
All it takes is stock standard structural engineering modelling:
Now this modelling involves a high level of maths, but we do know the modelling is correct.
Because that exact structural engineering modelling is used to put up these massive sky scrappers.
I take it you do you not accept the maths?
This is about WTC 7.
To replicate the event you're describing, we need to have a multi-million tonne building, close to our steel building and we need to make that first building collapse.
Naturally flying a plane into the first building won't make if fall, so we'll need a few hundred kilos of strategically placed C4 in that building to bring it down.
To hide that C4 explosion we'll use the plane flying into the building as a diversion but at least we're guaranteed to bring down that first building.
Now we have a collapsing multi-million tonne building close to the steel building we are trying to bring down and that event will be creating millions of tons of flying debris.
Naturally, that amount of flying debris won't be enough to collapse the target building, but luckily we also places some C4 in a second building that is also close by.
Once again we are going to need a second plane to hide the C4 explosion in that second building, but that should be easy enough to arrange.
Now we've managed to bring down two massive multi-million tonne buildings and created flying debris with the equivalent energy of thousands of tons of C4 but we always knew that wouldn't be enough energy to bring down our target building.
Luckily, while laying the C4 charges on the other two buildings, we also manage to plant a few hundred kilos of C4 in the third building.
Now to finish the job, all we have to do is detonate those last few kilos of C4 and no one will be the wiser.
What a simple plan. It's fool proof and using the planes to cover up the C4 explosions is a stroke of genius.
The only problem we face is this last explosion makes the building collapse like a demolition.
We should have thought about that!!!
1) bother with the 3rd building (are not the first two enough? The third didn't even get much publicity, it surely did little to rally public support)
2) wait so long after the collapse of the first to blow the 3rd (why wait? Surely one of the conspirators should have pointed out that a wait would only serve to make people suspicious. take it down seconds after one next to it falls and everything will look much more "natural")
3) bother with C4 at all (aren't planes slamming into buildings horrific enough? Controlled detonation of them afterwards adds very little but VASTLY increases the chances of something going wrong or the conspiracy being uncovered).
Conspiracy theorists almost never put themselves in the minds of the alleged conspirators. They latch onto things that are odd or unusual but the explanations they offer never actually reduce the oddness. WTC7 falling a few hours later is odd... it being blown up deliberately a few hours later is even more odd.
I particularly like the one about how the Pentagon was hit by a cruise missile.
Once again assuming this is true, any minimal amount of analysis raises a whole bunch of questions.
1) Flight 77 took off, so if it didn't hit the Pentagon where did it go? How did it just disappear?
2) The control tower voice and radar details match with the Flight 77 flight data recorder and they show the plane hitting the Pentagon.
Does that mean the control tower was in on the plot? Did the Pentagon also fudge the radar recordings?
3) Wouldn't the cruise missile also have shown up on the radar recording? Did the Pentagon remove it from the radar recordings?
4) Where was that missile launched from? Didn't anyone notice that launch? How did they keep the launch quite?
5) Wouldn’t someone, somewhere in the US Armed Forces be missing one cruise missile from their armaments inventory? Has no bean counter noticed that unaccounted missile?
And as always the conspiracy theorists answer to these types of question is the government did it but cover it up.
A video showing how the structural integrity of a building is severely compromised and it doesn't explain why the building collapsed?
Seems like a fairly myopic view to me.
I look at that video and to me it highlights the amazingly good structural engineering used in the design of the building.
For it to have taken such a massive hit and still manage to stay standing for as long as it did is a credit to the designers.
If only they had done a better job spacing the emergency exits many lives would have been saved.
Well... ok, let's assume it is.
> If you were told it's something different you wouldn't believe it.
Sure I would. It could be an apple wrapped in an orange shell. It could be a hologram. It could be a picture of an orange with a small kitten hidden behind it. It could, indeed, even be a chroma-shifted live-view of earth from space.
> What does it look like to you?
Looks like all the supports gave out at pretty much the same time. Like if there was a large fire and badly maintained fireproofing on them. Or maybe a gang of small kittens chewed them off. You have to admit it looks precisely like it would if you had a thousand kittens scratching at the supports simultaneously (assuming robot kittens, of course).
Trouble is, too many of these conspiracy theories turn out to be true. Just cast your mind back to the reactions of politicians when the rendition allegations first surfaced. Oh how they laughed and patronised. How they insulted and mocked. And then these same shameless filthy cowardly politicians came back to then justify their lies.
As for 9/11, I'm not sure any one knows the whole truth yet. Maybe we do, maybe those same politicians are telling the truth, but equally they themselves give us enough reason to doubt their word.
 You may notice that "intercepting communications with the express purpose of spying on people" is the charter of the NSA and of analogous agencies everywhere in the world.
You're more than welcome to take the word of a known dishonest agent. I prefer using my own common sense to discern events.
I'd suggest Dissident, but that's just me.
You forgot to mention the Arizona farm where Jim Morrison and JFK are living together.
Your debating skills suck. If you wish to be taken seriously, don't engage in namecalling and don't conflate issues by adding Bigfoot poison to the mix. It wrecks your cred.
"Debating" 9/11 truthers is a form of reasoning with people who have none.
My point is that diminishing the credibility of the US government doesn't enhance the credibility of 9/11 truthers. Have you made a point yet?
You're more than welcome to believe the Official Fables of the 9/11 Myth Cycle. Knock yourself out.
Who is maintaining that?
Or, y'know, perhaps shock horror scandal probe your government has lied to you! Nooooo.
NOTE: i'm supressing a serious rant along your vector.
The LAPD destroyed a home and burned a suspect alive, while having no good reason to suspect he was even alone. And not only was there very little outrage, but many were actually cheering this on.
And this, after the LAPD had multiply-revealed their snap-judgment to be dangerously-poor and restraint to be non-existent, having opened fire on innocent citizens in two separate instances, unprovoked, despite none of the citizens nor vehicles remotely matching the suspects description.
Do you really expect the reaction to have been much different, if that cabin was destroyed by hellfire missile, rather than the reckless-to-intentional over-application of tear-gas?
The citizenry is, to an appalling degree, OK with this sort of thing so long as the government can convince them that only "very bad people" are being targeted. (cf Ruby Ridge, Waco)
Sadly, I don't see them having too much additional trouble doing that, should they start using armed drones instead of SWAT teams.
So few Americans seem to care because to them it's just "some brown people on the other side of the world", showing it in the context of their own homes will make them realize how terrible these drone strikes really are.
It's not that it's far away from us, it's that it happens to others. In this case, to the family of a terrorist that, while born in the U.S., spent a decade waging war against the U.S. on behalf of Al Qaeda while eluding every attempt to bring him to justice.
The U.S. reserves the right to have different rules for us versus others like every other people in the history of the world.
We did give civilian trials to terrorists like John Walker Lindh and Jose Padilla who were American citizens in our custody. But Al Awalki evaded our attempts to give him judicial process for a decade. Does citizenship mean that you can't be touched as long as authorities can't bring you in alive?
> Yemeni authorities offered guarantees they would not turn al-Awlaki over to the U.S. or let him be questioned.
This demands explanation from the State Dept why they didn't pressure Yemen like they recently did to countries offering relief to Snowden. US-Yemen relations cannot be evinced in an Internet comment, but it appears to me the US was quick to pull the trigger when other options were not fully exercised. The least they could have done was charge him, right?
The places where we're conducting drone strikes are beyond the wild west. My dad was in Yemen when the Yemeni civil war broke out, and his hotel in the capital was shelled when fighting reached the city (he was ultimately evacuated with the other U.S. citizens by the U.S. military). The civil war is long over but the government has never been anything other than precarious, and the tribes have tremendous political power. One of the things Al Awlaki did was offer the protection of his powerful tribe to Al Qaeda officials against the Yemeni government.
Sorry, but this is the sign of a seriously f*ed up nation.
The Yemeni government began trying him in absentia in November 2010, for plotting to kill foreigners and being a member of al-Qaeda. A Yemeni judge ordered that he be captured "dead or alive.
This is a very well-written piece, but the (clearly intelligent and well-spoken) author's characterization of his son makes me suspicious of the rest of the content.
Justification could be (for the sake of argument): serious threat to national security / several lives at stake / not feasible to apprehend physically (jurisdiction, unfriendly government etc etc.)
If upon scrutiny the reasoning behind his demise were not justified:
proper adjustments must be made and compensation and punishment doled out.
addendum: People seemed ok with this when it was Osama, but not this guy. Seems like the method was less of an issue and it mattered much more about who it was. I agree with that sentiment.
In the case of Osama bin Laden a team was deployed and as far as I know they have not annihilated the entire family. In this case a drone was used to wipe out a group of people. The method is therefore very different and if that boy "was not specifically targeted" (which leaves him as collateral damage) then the method is also a very poor choice.
If he wasn't a citizen and just a local goat herder. Meh, who cares. Ok, kill him. That is kind of the thought process. Quite perverse. Constitutional or not, it just serves to limit the debate and to constrain opinions. Now even as far as Constitution goes, this is wrong. But what if the piece of paper signed couple of hundred years ago, allowed it. Would that make it ok? What about all the other people in those countries, murdered by US pilots from Langley by a push of the button.
"Oh but we don't deliberate target civilians, we are an exception, not like those other terrorists, these are all accidents" everyone would chime in. But are they? How can we be sure? If the contracts to build drones and the jobs involved in killing terrorists are paid related to how many terrorists are killed. Pretty sure soon enough the'd find way to target as many civilians as necessary in order to keep busy. An added benefit is that each person killed probably spawns a couple dozen future terrorists. Can't imagine a parent, sister, child of a victim not wanting to inflict likewise damage to the country that did this to them.
At least, that's what I think is supposed to go on here.
It also damages the reputation of the US throughout the world. That has effects on US business, and US citizens when they travel.
Well then, I'm guessing you're happy to know that isn't the thought process. Otherwise al Alwaki would be alive today.
In this sense America is more of a terrorist State than Israel. Any heavy handed action from the Israeli government faces serious resistance and upheaval from its own populace. Americans largely don't care and you'll find more people justifying it than opposing it.
Of course, if we are talking about anecdotal evidence that the people around you are opposed to crimes against the Palestinian people, carry on.
However they need to draw a line when their very existence is not respected.
I honestly don't think anyone could realistically do any better than they are doing, in their position. Lots of people would not accept anything other than Israeli self-destruction.
So damn true. People forget that we really haven't been truly "at war" in the traditional, collateral-damage-is-to-be-expected sense for almost a decade! The Iraq War was over in weeks. Same with Afghanistan. Since then it has been an occupation. Big difference.
I think that the whole War on Terror thing has largely been spun as a "war" because in war you accept things like collateral damage. Never mind that "War on Vague Concept" is utterly absurd! Imagine if we used drone strikes to take out cartel bosses in the asinine "War on Drugs." Ridiculous. Makes me mad.
The only right thing to do is to start treating terrorist suspects exactly like those suspected of any other crimes, be it murder, theft, rape etc.
The problem is very much one of terrorism. The basic idea of terrorism is to erase the boundaries of the battlefield. The worst possible reaction to that is to do the same, but that's increasingly what we've been doing. In order to be capable of fighting a war effectively (even while acting purely defensively) the rules of the battlefield must necessarily be very much different from the rules of civilized society.
Increasingly the ideas that police should act like soldiers, that soldiers should be used for policing, and that the protections inherent in the criminal justice system are now outmoded and no longer useful in fighting terrorism have taken hold. But this has occurred concomitant with the expansion of the "battlefield" in the "war on terror" to encompass no less than the entirety of human civilization.
The result is that while the terrorists may have knocked a few holes in the walls we have put up between civilized society under the rule of law and the near-anarchy of the battlefield the governments of the world have gleefully participated in shooting vastly more holes in those walls.
Today the idea of war is increasingly omnipresent. It is never ending and all encompassing.
I disagree. That's the only effective response. bin Laden said as much in communications to his underlings. I agree we should have them arrested where it's possible, but if it isn't a drone strike is the right thing to do.
Did Confederate soldiers get due process on the battlefield?
But not to the point of stupidity. As justice Jackson said, the constitution isn't a suicide pact.
Nazists have found this enemy in Jews and Communists. They are a threat and they are everywhere. That was their logic behind the machine of terror, behind the camps, behind starting the WW2. They had to stop Jews and Communism from "destroying the Western Civilization". The Communists had their "total" enemy too. Namely the rich, the burgoise, hence the never stopping struggle of the "class war". Which must be won by the internatinal proletaryat. Hence the gulag system, hence the terror, hence the police state. You say it's uniqe to to sa called "terrorists" and I say this is unique in history to any government that's want to have a total control and total war. The Totalitarian Government.
Indeed, I think such an idea is not only limiting but actively harmful, because in reality the destruction of our freedoms can quite easily take place at the hands of people operating on good intentions, with no great desire for power, and indeed with the personal perception of a great love of freedom.
Edit: I'll reply here instead of carrying the thread further. The important point I'm trying to make here is the idea that comparing the movements today which are eroding individual liberties with Nazism or Stalinist Communism is unhelpful, because they are not such. And it just gives their supporters the opportunity to go "oh, well, this isn't Nazism or Stalinism, so I can dismiss these complaints" and then have those objections bounce off without affecting them whatsoever.
I have never claimed that.
>Indeed, I think such an idea is not only limiting but actively harmful, because in reality the destruction of our freedoms can quite easily take place at the hands of people operating on good intentions, with no great desire for power, and indeed with the personal perception of a great love of freedom.
Exactly, I agree 100%. Remember, each communistic state had "Democratic" in its name. The USSR Constitution was so liberal that it granted more freedoms than the US Constitution. You had freedom of speech, freedom of assembly, freedom of religion.
So, again, this reminds of this what the US Government does today. It is pursuing the total state fighting "war on terror" and this draws all the other laws irrelevant. Exactly, exactly again, like Nazi Germany or Soviet Russia where the point the Governments were making was: as soon as we get rid of this "threat of Jewery/Communism/burgoise", all the Constitutional laws will be put back in effect.
The Communists for sure thought of themselves of "good people" who had to do all these barbarian things to be able to live in a better world and society. The same goes to Nazis.
EDIT: reply to your EDIT reply so to speak:
No, no, no. I don't care about the label on the box. I care about the contents of the box. Namely: kill lists, torture, raping the Bill of Rights, human rights, like imprisonment without trail, killing citizens without trial, spying on all communications, wars, censorship, lies, etc. I could care less what -ism you put on the box.
Another thing is - how do you know really if Obama isn't a mass murderer? My God! Journalists are not allowed into war zones nowadays. The Government learned from Vietnam. Remember, most of the people governed by Stalin and Hitler thought of them as great leaders too who would never let any wrongdoings to happen. They were all shocked to learn about gulags or the camps. Some, still don't believe. Would you sign off drone attack on 16-year old child of a suspected terrorist. Obama did! Without a trial. Now, imagine the personality type.
Seriously - start examining the rhetoric sued by your representatives, your law enforcement, and your media. Are they _really_ speaking any sense?
Unfortunately, Congress isn't so keen on going back to that system. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-04-04/khalid-sheikh-moham...
At the end of the day, the true reason why I can still sleep well is that fact that like Rome Empire, the USA Empire will fall too. Observing closely for last 8 years from within the system, there is no other way to go. Its too late to wake up the masses. Let's only hope that when it collapse, those in majority will have good intentions, hopefully setting up Government 2.0.
Terrorists are the 20th and 21st century equivalent of pirates.
The problem (one of them at least) is that they're not only killing pirates, but people who they think might be pirates.
Al Awalki was not killed because he was a terrorist. He was killed for the same reason Dorner was killed: it was impossible for authorities to bring him in alive and give him a trial.
Well, the US can't do that. Terrorists is the replacement for the perished Soviets. It's of an ideological matter. They're evil and must be destroyed.
Imagine an alternative scenario wherein the grandfather had created his own drone that killed some random government agency dude (by mistake). He'd been labelled a terrorist. But, now the government officials that killed his grandson aren't terrorists because they work for the government.
What a skewed definition we (and the media) have set for terrorism! Sigh!!
Edit: what I said was that folks should, like with any article, do some investigating before they jump to conclusions. I merely stated that the close ties to known terrorists provides more motivation for this.
But yall are obviously just looking for any opportunity to get all righteous, so keep down voting and not even reading what I said.
Who checks who goes on this list? Which public court checked the facts and pronounced him and his family guilty? What of the right of the accused to a fair trial, no matter which country they come from? If you're going to flagrantly violate international law and assassinate suspects and their families without trial, what confidence can we have that other laws won't be broken? What confidence can we have that this list was created and maintained in good faith and with due process when it is maintained in secret and the execution is so careless?
The missile killed him, his teenage cousin and at least five other civilians on Oct. 14, 2011, while the boys were eating dinner at an open-air restaurant in southern Yemen....The attorney general, Eric H. Holder Jr., said only that Abdulrahman was not “specifically targeted,” raising more questions than he answered.
This drone strike was apparently on a restaurant - I find it mind-boggling that you'd try to defend such actions by saying he was on a secret list. What about the other people in the restaurant at the time, and the innocent members of his family? Does the Obama administration consider the family of people on a kill-list fair game now? And the people who eat close to them in a restaurant too?
Regardless of whether this narrator is reliable or the victim a 'bad dude', I don't find it acceptable that the government can kill whoever they want without trial, and without public evidence. If they do this in restaurants in Yemen, why not restaurants inside the states too?
At present there are no answers, no explanations, no reasons given besides his death and the fact he and his father were on a hit list.
Edit: Note I am not defending the killing of the grandson by any means. However, I did notice that the father was tried in a court in Yemen, and the judge ordered him to be apprehended "dead or alive." http://www.upi.com/Top_News/World-News/2010/11/08/Cleric-say... I was just surprised that people are so suspicious of any claim that the father was anything other than an ordinary citizen minding his own business, yet accept the narrative presented in the original article at face value.
eksith asked for evidence that the father was a "bad dude." I provided some. It is perfectly fine to argue that this isn't justification for death, but that wasn't briancaw's point. This merely seems to indicate that the narrator might not be providing the most balanced perspective.
Let me put it in another way, since the question doesn't seem to be making sense to you: If your father happened to be Timothy McVeigh, should the government target you for death?
Edit: I just read your edit and I apologize for the tone of my post. It wasn't called for. I could blame the lack of coffee or that I was tired, but the fact is, these types of stories really bother me and I didn't think it through before posting.
Edit2: My request for evidence was for the son; not the father. The primary subject of the article was described as a typical 16-year old with the misfortune of simply being the son of an alleged terrorist. Where was the evidence that he deserved death?
The author of the article makes it sound like the whole family were innocent american tourists, that the father was targeted without cause, and the grandson was specifically targeted. While the killing of the father may not have been legal, and the killing of the grandson appears to have been a horrible tragedy, the author's account of the situation is wildly misleading.
Like.. Ignoring everything else wrong with this story, that's still pretty fucked up for you to even imply.
Note that there's not even any concrete factual accusations of him being involved with planning actual attacks, just 'he spoke to', 'was associated with', 'allegedly involved in'. You really think something that flimsy is worth murdering dozens of people with a drone?
I would certainly hope that if a few disgruntled people alleged that you were involved in crimes, you'd actually get a fair trial instead of a remote control execution. But maybe that's just not the world we live in.
any proof of that?
Westboro Baptist? Are they extreme enough?
How about skinheads or white supremacists? They certainly advocate for violence against innocents, they probably even call it holy war.
If the United States seriously starts advancing the idea that speech alone can justify an execution, then it's all over. There's no point in pretending there's anything resembling freedom in this country anymore if that's the case.
You simply cannot justify executing someone based solely off speech. It doesn't matter what the speech is. You have to prove beyond a reasonable doubt actual, active involvement in a crime to justify murdering anyone, let alone a US citizen. The fact that the US government gets away with murdering people all the time doesn't change anything.
You can certainly respond to 'undesirable' speech in appropriate ways based on the law. There are lots of examples of countries where undesirable speech - whether it criticizes tyrants or promotes violence against minorities - can be punished with fines or jail time. That's certainly a lot better than an execution.
Can you please give me an official reference for that? I know it is kind of off-topic and it should be obvious as a common sense, but I am not joking here. When I asked a USA touristic visa I was told we are all considered by default guilty of illegal immigration until proven otherwise.
Just saying. This post is largely about how people in the war-driven countries are perceived by Americans as just abstract figures, instead of real people, thus, making it easy for them to be pro-war.
To the comment below: You know exactly what I meant when I said it - the us vs. them mentality.
Case in point: Latvian hacker about to be extradited to the US for allegedly committing computer crimes. Guess what? U.S. has not supplied a single item of evidence about anything - they just know that he did it.
This, as we can see, spills over to other departments of the u.s. government - fighting terrorism, national security, etc.
Seems like they just come up with random crap to do for the fun of it.
The point here is that there are cases when bad people have intent to do harm and need to be stopped in ways faster than a court of law can individually approve. Whether this is one of those cases is the real question.
step 1. killing non-Americans outside, accused of no crime, without due process - ok
step 2. killing Americans outside, accused of no crime, without due process - so-so, the public seems to be getting used to it
step 3. ... (hint : not a profit)
You are confused; assuming that being put on a list has any reason or due process.
this is criminal. period.
Sometimes, you know, people adopt very different ideologies and personal goals than other members of their family.
Criminals and terrorists should be punished. Not their (innocent) parents or children.
Guilt by association.
The six degrees of Kevin Bacon.
The NSA archiving and cross-indexing all email metadata that traverses internet backbone unencrypted or lands in a PRISM partner's mail system.
How many social graph edges do you suppose you need to be away from Anwar al-Awlaki to be able to safely eat at open air restaurants in Yemen?
(Bonus question: How connected is "the global social graph", and does there exists a number of edges that connects everybody on the internet?)
1. His grandson was American, so the US military establishment assassinated an American outside the courts
2. The attack was performed in a third country, which is an act of war. Not fuzzy war-on-terror or other nonsense. War, classic version. Just reverse sides and imagine US' reaction on drone attacks on its soil affecting civilians.
I'm pretty sure the US constitution disagrees with that premise, and should protect any US citizen from such a situation.
Personally - I'd like to see _much_ more transparency and accountability in the compilation and justification for most sorts of "government lists", and I fear the people in charge of "the kill list" which manages to kill people who are '… not “specifically targeted,”' have proven to be inadequately discriminating at the task…
Though I'd probably prefer not to have a "kill list". Killing should be limited to military personell in wars, during 'battle'. I realise the US has framed the war on terror in order to blur those lines... but seriously firing missiles into cafes!?
That's exactly what I responded to. I ignored your conclusion, because of your invalid premise.
Anyway, I 100% agree that "there is a burden of proof on me to explain why, by killing that someone my action is righteous, legal and moral"
Summary: stop with the red herring of talking about the known associations of his son with terrorism - we are talking about his innocent grandson.
There is no oversight in this process, and even if there were that provides no justice for the innocent people at the cafe where the grandson was killed. This whole story disgusts me.
See how that works? Just because your government said it does not make it automatically true.
We can get riled up over being told by mainstream media that we are being watched despite whistle blowers telling us so for years, incited by the same media to riot over an incident that happens every day untelevised, and not bat an eyelash when our own citizens are assassinated for the world to see by our government.
"Today, nobody cares… but tomorrow, they will…"
Well, from what we have seen, it's more like if you are even within a kill zone of the latest guided bomb of someone who has been labeled a terrorist, you are not human anymore and your rights are now null.
And we will have to be naive if we think it will stop here…
Until then it was: "We did only kill terrorists, enemy fighters and combatants."
Sorry, to say that, but the EX-POTUS Jimmy Carter seems to have gotten it right:
"America does not have any functioning democracy"
And everything above I said knowing, what is said of the killed father. Knowing him allegedly being an Al-Qaeda-Member and recruiter and so on. If the government had so much on him (and his son), why not trial him (even in absence) and let a jury decide?
Why use methods, worthy of some ruthless dictator, or the governments from humanities darkest moments?
Coming from Germany (and knowing, that our government is not one bit better, but not equipped that efficiently) I really do not understand, how any sane American official can tell the world, that the US is the democratic role-model for all to follow.
We need to start having a more nuanced view of people. A common thread between the three people in this discussion: Trayvon Martin, Dzhokar Tsarnev, and Abdulrahman Al-Awlaki is that they are all young men who were killed and can be commonly reduced to stereotypes to fit a narrative (young black man up to no good, terrorist, terrorist).
But, when you dig a little deeper, it turns out there's a person under that sterotype! I'm happy to see the media start to see this and a national conversation grow around this; hopefully it will make us better human beings.
They were all also unarmed when they were murdered.
So I'm not sure that seeing Dzhokhar Tsarnaev on the cover of a mainstream magazine should end the "conspiracy theories".
Isn't it possible to care about both racism and wiretapping/drones/secrecy a the same time?
Isn't racism one of the most serious issues in the US?
Why are you so sure any riots were 'incited by the media', rather than an autonomous response from the many people directly affected by racism?
civil liberty proponents
I just love it when people place this label upon me because I adapted to train of thought of not wanting to fight anyone else's battles… when you get called a nigger by refs at your soccer games when you're the only black kid on the field and keep on playing with your team because you just want to play, come back and tell me how I should respond.
The whole incident is appalling, however there was never going to be a satisfactory conclusion to that trial unless a lot of solid evidence one way or the other had somehow turned up.
The fact that the Attorney General of the United States gives speeches about a closed court case in which he has no authority to interject (Florida's Stand Your Ground Law) instead of addressing the slew of national and international hot topics, speaks to the damage control attitude of our officials at the moment. The fact that not a single mainstream reporter is pressuring officials to focus on these other topics highlights their complacency and populist pandering. Better not ask the wrong questions or go off topic, least you be removed from the White House press corp.
The father of the boy was Anwar al-Awlaki
U.S. government officials said that he was a senior talent recruiter and motivator who was involved in planning terrorist operations for the Islamist militant group al-Qaeda.
With a blog, a Facebook page, the al-Qaeda magazine Inspire, and many YouTube videos, the Saudi news station Al Arabiya described him as the "bin Laden of the Internet."
U.S. officials say that as imam at a mosque in Falls Church, Virginia (2001–02), which had 3,000 members, al-Awlaki spoke with and preached to three of the 9/11 hijackers, who were al-Qaeda members. In 2001, he presided at the funeral of the father of Nidal Malik Hasan, an Army psychiatrist who later e-mailed him extensively in 2008–09 before the Fort Hood shootings. During Al-Awlaki's later radical period after 2006–07, when he went into hiding, he was associated with Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the Nigerian who attempted the 2009 Christmas Day bombing of an American airliner. Al-Awlaki was allegedly involved in planning the latter's attack.
According to the original article though:
The government repeatedly made accusations of terrorism against Anwar — who was also an American citizen — but never charged him with a crime. No court ever reviewed the government’s claims nor was any evidence of criminal wrongdoing ever presented to a court. He did not deserve to be deprived of his constitutional rights as an American citizen and killed.
If this guy did all of this shit on U.S. soil and was a while, natural born U.S. citizen he could have slaughtered an entire mall worth of people on Black Friday and we'd /still/ give him a trial and we'd /still/ not execute him (unless it was in a capital punishment state).
People are getting really worn down and used to this whole extra-judiciary killing shit.
Again I am not sure if this is enough legal justification to kill a US citizen without a trial.
IN GENERAL- That the President is authorized to use all necessary and appropriate force against those nations, organizations, or persons he determines planned, authorized, committed, or aided the terrorist attacks that occurred on September 11, 2001, or harbored such organizations or persons, in order to prevent any future acts of international terrorism against the United States by such nations, organizations or persons.
...which, in my opinion, includes the father and maybe those other person killed in the drone attack on the boy. So there is a legal justification for the killings, in my opinion (I am not a lawyer and I am not a US citizen).
The parent article is incredibly slanted - the author ever so conveniently forgets to mention that his son was a senior Al-Qaeda recruiter, who was "advisor" to the 9/11 bombers, the Fort Hood shooter, the underwear bomber and a whole host of others.
Even his own Yemeni government tried him in absentia, and ordered him captured "Dead or Alive".
You can argue that the death penalty is wrong, and he should have faced a US court (although I somehow down he or say Osama Bin Laden was likely to actually show up in a US court, even if given half the chance).
However, please don't be another ignorant reader who doesn't know where Yemen is, or any of the context here.
Good idea. Let's take a look:
"Abdulrahman al-Awlaki was killed at the age of 16 in an American drone strike on October 14, 2011, in Yemen, along with alleged al-Qaeda members two weeks after the death of his father. Nine other people were killed in the same CIA-led attack. Among the dead was a 17-year-old cousin of Abdulrahman. Family members have said that he was on his way to a barbecue. "
Looks to me like people like his father, don't really have to work too hard. We are doing his job for him.
If your son was out recruiting for Al Qaeda or preaching to the 9/11 hijackers you wouldn't want your grandson to be punished for the sins of your son. Also, note that the grandson was killed 2 weeks after a drone killed his father.
This is not illegal.
> preaching to the 9/11 hijackers
Which sins exactly do you refer to?
This is what awlaki said one month after 9/11 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j2Ofg2BacIM
According to U.S. officials the killing of Abdulrahman al-Awlaki was a mistake; the actual target was an Egyptian, Ibrahim al-Banna.
He wasn't on the target list, he was at the wrong place at the wrong time. If they knew he was there and were secretly targeting him, Obama should be impeached.
(or, alternatively, "because that was the least imprecise targeted attack we were capable of at the time")
It's a bit like saying aiming nuke with pin point accuracy. It might have hit its goal, but it destroyed everything else.
"an American citizen that is being targeted without due process, without trial and, he's underage, he's a minor."
the then White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs replied,
"I would suggest that you should have a far more responsible father if they are truly concerned about the well being of their children."
What boggles my mind is how these countries allow the US to run drone strikes on their citizens. I mean, Yemen has a government and they're like, "Yeah sure, target and kill innocent people and blow cafes and shit up in our country. Cos you know, terrorism and all that."
Checks and balances... and yet, in this case, there aren't any. How the hell is that supposed to work, and what can be done about it? That's not rhetorical, what can a US citizen do about this?
Recall your elected officials or not vote for incumbents. Especially those who sit on intelligence, judicial or defense committees.
I have a problem with an Executive and paramilitary bureaucracies (CIA) that feel no civilian visible court has jurisdiction over them and no one should hold them accountable for their actions or mistakes.
"Why are we providing a platform for families of terrorists to advocate against American national interests? They should have considered the consequences of targeting the United States and its citizens with violence before they walked down that path.
Our intelligence services and armed forces have done a commendable job keeping Americans safe. I thank them for their service, and for keeping my family safe.
I have no time or desire to listen to this sorry speech about human and civil rights from someone who did not stop his son from advocating violence."
Ps.: I tend to avoid products made in any crappy country, this includes the US.
But what does might count as a war-crime, is the fact, that the us mostly shield their drone operators with civilian shields. The drones are for example operated from German military bases, that are embedded in civilian regions. A drone-pilot is a combatant, as he clearly fights.
So these combatants are embedded in a country, that is not part of this conflict. Shielded by (for a fact) foreign civilians. And shielding is outlawed by international law regarding war and war-like conflicts.
So the US just might use this argument in their favor, as the Al-Qaeda clearly used the 16 year-old (and the other civilians) as shields - so Al-Qaeda would be responsible for their death (or so a perverted ruling might go).
The (not so) "fun" fact here is, that this (the shielding of US drone-pilots) happens with the knowledge of the German government and that they do not only not seem to care, but nobody here in Germany does give a damn, as nearly no one (journalists) tells these facts to the people.
Some (say Afghan) combatant could just walk up to these drone pilots and shoot them in the head. It would be an act of a war like conflict (like shooting a soldier in battle). It would not be a "normal" crime. OK, but nobody would look at it this way. It would be labeled an act of terror.
For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of Trial by Jury:
For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences
For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies:
I suppose this is next:
He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.
He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil power.
He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:
For Quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:
For protecting them, by a mock Trial, from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:
I don't know whose name to throw on this, though. King George, King Barack, ??? I suppose we need some kind of voting system overhaul (runoff, proportional, ???) to end the rule of the corporate sponsored 2 parties.
Is it legal to kill people on secret suspicion, rather than after conviction in a public court of law?
Is it legal to kill families and associates as well as the suspects themselves?
If this is legal for the US in Yemen, why is it not legal on US soil?
Is it legal and permissible for other nations to drone people in the US?
I notice one thing that is missing in Anwar's father's article is any sense of remorse-- any sense that Anwar's actions were wrong.
Bad things happen during war. Sometimes people are killed who shouldn't be. But when the instigators of said conflict refuse to take responsibility, I have no sympathy. Save your tears for someone who deserves them-- like the women who are killed in "honor killings" by assholes like this, the countries that are third world shitholes because of theocracies, or maybe the prostitutes Anwar apparently favored. But not for people who start a war, and then whine about the casualties to their side.
"To my mind, to kill in war is not a whit better than to commit ordinary murder." - Albert Einstein
Agreed, Albert. Drones included.
They could send drones to a foreign country but that would just make that country send their drones to America.
Until that happens America has got the upper hand but boy will any one appreciate the irony when Americans get killed by foreign drones.
Don't make everybody out to look like a terrorist and expect them to not get pissed off and become what you made them look like.
Hell this guy might not have been a terrorist before but now that he lost his entire family terrorism might not sound that bad.
I'm waiting for the day they mess with the wrong family.
We need a leader. Like a MLK that can rally us to fight for stuff like this. Though I appreciate all the efforts that Al Sharpton, Jesse Jackson, and the rest of the black leaders do. If stuff like this continue we will all have bigger problems then overzealous neighborhood wanabe cops
"Oral argument on Defendants’ Motion to Dismiss will be heard by Judge Rosemary M. Collyer of the United States District Court for the District of Columbia on July 19, 2013, at 10:00 am. "
Isn't it OK then to selectively, cleanly, kill one alleged enemy with Polonium tea?
Why these two cases get so different coverage?
can we start trying us government officials as war criminals as if they came from any other country on the planet please?
Which politicians have power/control over this situation and who are their funding sources?
Which of these funding sources can be pressured based on SEO/growth hacking/bad press?
Keep these great posts coming!
Surprised he wasn't charged, just as a formality. At least then they would have said he "refused to answer to an arrest warrant...blah blah...plan to kill Americans." Unless the matrix is playing tricks on me, he did admit to https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anwar_al-Awlaki a lot of stuff that we call terrorism. Generally speaking, if you refuse to surrender, they can't take you in and are plotting to kill someone, the police can kill you.
But to throw a freaking bomb from 10000 feet in a cafe just to kill a person...that's a huge no-no. It just doesn't win you any friends. If it was his car, I could see it, traveling with dangerous people, is dangerous.
The US Government didn't.