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Monday, July 09, 2012

Death from above: It can happen here

You'd think that in this campaign season, the right would critique Barack Obama from every conceivable stance. But you would be wrong.

Esquire has published an expose of Barack Obama's "lethal presidency" -- including his extra-judicial killing of a 16 year-old American boy. See here and here and here. Long story short: The administration killed the son (who was not a "terrorist") because it was angry at the father (who was).
Let's start there. He was an American boy, born in America. Though he'd lived in Yemen since he was about seven, he was still an American citizen, which should have made it harder for the United States to kill him.

It didn't.

It should at the very least have made it necessary for the United States to say why it killed him.

It didn't.

His name was Abdulrahman al-Awlaki, and he was 16 years old when he died — when he was killed by a drone strike in Yemen, by the light of the moon. He was the son of Anwar al-Awlaki, who was also born in America, who was also an American citizen, and who was killed by drone two weeks before his son was, along with another American citizen named Samir Khan.
He was a boy who hadn't seen his father in two years, since his father had gone into hiding. He was a boy who knew his father was on an American kill list and who snuck out of his family's home in the early morning hours of September 4, 2011, to try to find him. He was a boy who was still searching for his father when his father was killed, and who, on the night he himself was killed, was saying goodbye to the second cousin with whom he'd lived while on his search, and the friends he'd made. He was a boy among boys, then; a boy among boys eating dinner by an open fire along the side of a road when an American drone came out of the sky and fired the missiles that killed them all.
FDR did not target Hitler's relatives. In fact, sister Paula was treated in a very humane fashion.

If this president can murder American citizens overseas without any due process, then a future president will use drones to murder American citizens within our borders. It's the next logical step. I am convinced that it will happen.

The Islam-hating right-wing dolts who applaud Obama's drone murders never pause to consider the wider implications. They never think about the possibility that a future administration can now crush any form of dissent through the simple expedient of placing the "terrorist" label on those who demand change. Under the new rules, a "terrorist" is not just someone who commits an act of mass violence for political purposes. The term now applies to anyone who runs an unfriendly website, to anyone who offers mere words in support of an ideology that inconveniences the Powers That Be. Sing the wrong song and the drone of death will provide the big finish.

Genuine libertarians -- of the sort who used to vote for the Libertarian party -- should be appalled by Obama's actions. So where are the libertarian critics now? Will anyone on the right decry America's fleet of airborne robot killers?

The only voices expressing their disgust with Obama's murders are on the left: Glenn Greenwald (of course), Mother Jones, Firedoglake, and Digby.

I've been saying it for years: Although revolution is a vile business, the threat of revolution is the only thing that has ever kept any government honest. Thus, any technology that makes rebellion impossible makes tyranny inevitable. The ultimate target of a killer drone is democracy.
Comments:
This is what I don't get, Joseph: the guy is a murderer, and you're still going to vote for him. He's taken every infringement of civil liberties, every invasion of privacy, every bit of petty corruption, and every sort of extrajudicial violence implemented by Bush and Cheney, and amped them all up to whole new levels. You know it. You've called him on it. But you're still going to vote for him. You've made that abundantly clear.

Do you expect him (or his successors) to stop, just because you, Greenwald, Digby, and others scold him about it on a blog???
 
Good reason to vote for the Mittster. He'll continue down the path George the Lesser and Obama have trod but we can say,"It's a republican doing it!"
 
Guys, you are being ridiculous. Obama is susceptible to pressure; no Republican is. Democrats have mounted no pressure. That is their shame.

Regarding the stories discussed her in recent times: Senator Obama did sponsor a bill designed to curb offshore abuses. You know that Romney will push for further deregulation. That right there is a significant distinction.
 
I've been sharing and commenting on this article, thanks, Joseph.

I've been trying to put pressure on my former community who stood next to me by the thousands in antiwar protests...until their Omessiah took the White House.

I found one lone comment, besides my own, of a liberal who is appalled by these drone killings. The rest? Bone-chilling regurgitations of rightwing justification for this War on Terrorists. There will be no "pressure" put on Obama.

And, Mr. Mike, it's far too late to hand this mess back to the Republicans in order to rouse the left. They've already abandoned their...our...principles. We need some way to discuss these issues outside the red-blue paradigm.

Personally, I'm voting Jill Stein and it's killing me that she's coming to Baltimore on the one week I can't attend!
 
Before we get all dewey-eyed about the Mittster, don't forget his chief foreign-policy advisor is John Bolton. Yes, that John Bolton, of "blow up the UN and nuke Iran" fame.
 
What pressure could we possibly exert on a second term Obama?

He only threw a bone to the GLBT community when his numbers started to fall. Once the fools re-elect him it's back under the bus.

Yeah, most of his advisers and cabinet are saner than any republican but we'll still be going in the same direction. Why not make it an interesting trip. Who knows we might even get that nuclear Armageddon to hasten the Rapture.
 
Did Reagan target Khadaffi's daughter?

Perhaps the "American teenager" was merely collateral damage.
 
It's absurd to think that Mitt, a creature of Wall Street and the right wing, is going to be any less likely to kill Americans on American soil with drones than Obama would be. Any mainstream candidate, at this point, is going to be reactionary against the American people. The pattern is set. I don't see any third party candidates that have a chance in hell either, so I'm not really sure how to vote at this point. I just know it's not going to be Mitt, and that Obama is not the lesser of two evils, since both are monstrously evil choices. Based on Mitt's scandals, if they ever come to the attention of the sedated masses, I suspect he hasn't got much chance anyway. But these things have a way of turning around quickly, and with the Republican success at vote suppression, it's anyones guess what the outcome will be. Either way, it's not going to be good for any of us little people.
 
I wish the Democrats would pull themselves together and insist that Obama step out of the election.

They should nominate someone else.

At this time it is NOT true that we have to choose between Obmama and Romney. It's only true that it appears to be the choice we'll be given.

That we are accepting that situation is a tragedy.
 
The only (legitimate) "pressure" one can bring to bear against an elected official is to refuse to vote for the SOB. This is your very last chance to exert "pressure" on Obama. If he wins, he'll be a lame duck and beholden to no-one except those who would guarantee his post-Presidential fortune. He's not going to listen to anyone who won't guarantee him 7 or 8 figures worth of speaking fees and corporate directorships a year.

What pressure are you going to bring to bear on him in a second term, Joseph? Are you going to blog harshly? I'm sure the thought of that has him quaking in his thousand dollar loafers.

Remember how the obots promised to "hold his feet to the fire"? That certainly worked out well.
 
Cannon's going to vote for Obama?
I haven't been so disappointed since Buchanan said he was going to vote for W Bush after calling him either a dunce or a war criminal for allowing dual loyalists to push him into Iraq.

Write in Nader. Save the blood from your hands.
 
In the America of the near future, we won't have the technical means to organize resistance, even if we have the will. Our blogs, our tweets, our email, our Facebook updates and Web searches--they're all passing through nets in the hands of oppressors.

Last week, in my professional capacity, I interviewed Oliver Stone. Toward the end I asked him half-jokingly whether he was worried that his communications were monitored by the Man. He laughed and said that membership has its privileges. "They'll come for you first," he said.
 
Glenn Greenwald is reporting that drone operators safely based in the US are to be given medals for bravery!
 
Please. Nader? Naderites = Obots. Same voters. Nader destroyed the Green party then kept running. And he isn't even running now. Vote Green, then, "Anonymous." Dr. Jill Stein. She's running.
 
Death from above at single- or perhaps double-digit numbers of targets is bad, in these contexts.

What is worse is the Third World War, over Iran.

Mr. Romney is all for starting that war. Obama is reticent, at minimum, and may very well fiercely resist that plan.

That is enough to vote for Obama, because surely, if Romney gets in office, we are beginning that war. Perhaps Obama's re-election will also see that transpire, but at this point, he's the only one standing athwart that breach and saying no.

That was also a decent reason to prefer Obama last time, as McCain has never met a foreign problem he didn't want to have a war over. ('We are all Georgians now!,' indeed.)

XI
 
This is a scary proposition, Joseph. Would the military follow orders to "apply the the drone of death" if targets were here, on US homeground and accused only of "singing the wrong song, writing the wrong blog"?

That's the only possible way out that I can envisage. If the situation arose, would they do it, or would they be on our side?
 
WWIII?

Why would WWIII start over Iran? Who else cares enough to get involved?

Most American ME experts seem to think it would be silly to attack Iran. That the US could take out there nuclear research facilities etc but thats about it. You cant occupy. You cant regime change by invading. So you apply economic pressure which hurts the leadership and wait for the apple to fall.

It doesnt matter which neofascist is in the WH. Both of them will do nothing and carry on to paraphrase a British-ism.

Even if Romney believes the Angel Moron(i) talks to him, I doubt he is quite as daft as that sounds.


Harry
 
Haven't been able to verify this, from a Zionist blogger:

"The 'Palestinians' are once again threatening to go to the United Nations to seek a 'state.' And the last thing that Barack Hussein Obama wants to do in the middle of a reelection campaign is the thing he would have to do if the 'Palestinians' make that move: He would have to veto a 'Palestinian state' in the United Nations Security Council.

As a result, Obama is threatening the 'Palestinians' with the kind of sanctions with which they were threatened by George W. Bush (link in Arabic, Google translation here, Hat Tip: Jonathan Schanzer via Twitter). He is threatening to close their 'embassy' in Washington. He is threatening to stop all US aid to the 'Palestinians.' And he even sent emissaries to Ramallah last week to convey that threat in person."



If true it's another low for O.
 
http://niqnaq.wordpress.com/2012/07/12/bloody-yank-puppets/


Apparently verified.
 
I've found the silver lining here, though it took time. Drone strikes are used in countries or areas where the US police state has no overt, on the ground presence. Where there is political control, arrests or assassinations can be done in a variety of other less spectacular ways.
It follows that if Americans within this country are ever targeted by drone attacks, it will be because large sections of the country are somehow relatively independent of central authority, possibly through rebellion.
The future looks bright!
 
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