Friday, February 08, 2013

Barry and his drones

"The memo is woefully insufficient as a legal analysis. Even its title, "Lawfulness of a Lethal Operation Directed Against a U.S. Citizen Who is a Senior Operational Leader of Al-Qa'ida or an Associated Force," makes assumptions that merit thorough examination. Who, for example, qualifies as a Senior Operational Leader? Al-Awlaki never commanded any attacks but was a propagandist who arguably inspired them. Is an associated force a group that shares Al Qaeda's ideology or must it be a part of a central command structure? Al-Awlaki's Yemen-based non-state group, Al Qaeda Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) was developed independently in the south of Yemen and has national goals distinct from the aims of the transnational Al Qaeda network."