2,500 Kills Later The Obama Administration Still Figuring Out Policy On Drone Strikes


Before the election there was some urgency in the Obama administration to set down firm policy on when lethal drone strikes were warranted and legal:

Facing the possibility that President Obama might not win a second term, his administration accelerated work in the weeks before the election to develop explicit rules for the targeted killing of terrorists by unmanned drones, so that a new president would inherit clear standards and procedures, according to two administration officials.

Unfortunately, now that Obama has won re-election to a second term, the urgency to create firm policy on drone strikes seems to have disappeared:

The matter may have lost some urgency after Nov. 6. But with more than 300 drone strikes and some 2,500 people killed by the Central Intelligence Agency and the military since Mr. Obama first took office, the administration is still pushing to make the rules formal and resolve internal uncertainty and disagreement about exactly when lethal action is justified.

Mr. Obama and his advisers are still debating whether remote-control killing should be a measure of last resort against imminent threats to the United States, or a more flexible tool, available to help allied governments attack their enemies or to prevent militants from controlling territory.

Agree with the decision to order these strikes or not, shouldn’t the administration have figured out the legalities of ordering the strikes before they started killing people?

And that’s just taking the executive branch into account. Where do Congress’ war powers rest when it comes to these strikes? No doubt the Obama administration, a proponent of expansive executive powers for obvious reasons, feels they have the authority to unilaterally order the death of foreigners but nobody in Congress is willing to stand up for the legislative check on executive war powers?

Some might argue that these drone strikes aren’t a “war” per se, but if we’re firing missiles and killing thousands of people, what else is it?

The Constitution requires the assent of Congress before we go to war to specifically prohibit the President from using the military as a sort “king’s army” to do with as he pleases. It seems these days that’s happening, and Congress has little interest in stopping it.

Rob Port is the editor of SayAnythingBlog.com. In 2011 he was a finalist for the Watch Dog of the Year from the Sam Adams Alliance and winner of the Americans For Prosperity Award for Online Excellence. In 2013 the Washington Post named SAB one of the nation's top state-based political blogs, and named Rob one of the state's best political reporters.

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  • SigFan

    Obamao don’t need no laws and guidelines – he is the law. At least in his own mind and that of his useful idiot worshipers. Jamie Foxx finally admits what we all knew the left believe about Obama recently – at least he is honest about his idolatry.


  • Roy_Bean

    “Some might argue that these drone strikes aren’t a “war” per se, but if
    we’re firing missiles and killing thousands of people, what else is it?”

    It seems to depend on who is giving the orders. Barry O defending a socialist country seems to be OK, when “W” was defending a free republic not so much.

  • Hannitized, Proofs obsession

    The far left is as outraged at the killing of Muslims with drones as the far-right is.

    So it begs the question, when did you and your SAB buddies start kneeling to Allah, Rob?

    • http://sayanything.flywheelsites.com Rob

      I’m an atheist, so I doubt I’ll be kneeling to any god any time soon Hannitized.

      But I’m glad you’re recognizing that I’m not the lock-step, right-wing ideologue you make me out to be. Sometimes even the “far left” is right.

      • Hannitized, Proofs obsession

        You only care about trying to make Obama look bad, as he goes about killing terrorists. You don’t care about the lives of Muslims like the left does.

        And if you do, well then, your SAB buddies can start calling you a secret Muslim who bows to Allah, like they do the rest of the Americans who happen to respect human life.

        • jl

          “You don’t care about the lives of Muslims like the left does.” Which really means-“you don’t care about he lives of Muslim terrorists like the left does.

          • Hannitized, Proofs obsession

            So in your idiot mind you are claiming Rob cares about saving the lives of Muslim terrorists?

      • $8194357

        Still your free will choice for a time yet Port..
        God respects that but tells us:
        The Day WILL come.
        For it is written…..

        Isaiah 45:23
        New King James Version (NKJV)

        23 I have sworn by Myself;
        The word has gone out of My mouth in righteousness,
        And shall not return,

        That to Me every knee shall bow,
        Every tongue shall take an oath.

        Romans 14:6-13

        6 He who observes the day, observes it to the Lord;[a] and he who does not observe the day, to the Lord he does not observe it. He who eats, eats to the Lord, for he gives God thanks; and he who does not eat, to the Lord he does not eat, and gives God thanks.
        7 For none of us lives to himself, and no one dies to himself.
        8 For if we live, we live to the Lord; and if we die, we die to the Lord. Therefore, whether we live or die, we are the Lord’s.
        9 For to this end Christ died and rose[b] and lived again, that He might be Lord of both the dead and the living.
        10 But why do you judge your brother? Or why do you show contempt for your brother? For we shall all stand before the judgment seat of Christ.[c]

        11 For it is written:

        “As I live, says the Lord,
        Every knee shall bow to Me,
        And every tongue shall confess to God.”[d]

        12 So then each of us shall give account of himself to God.

        13 Therefore
        let us not judge one another anymore, but rather resolve this, not to put a stumbling block or a cause to fall in our brother’s way

  • Harold

    Obama makes Bush look like a popper when it comes to being a killing machine in first Iraq and now Afghanistan and other middle east countries, so I don’t know reason the Obama administration can’t define what they do and believe in when it comes to using drones in their attacks on our enemies. Must be some sort of political lose if they spell it out since Obama and his crew base everything they do on politics.

  • $8194357

    Do you suppose the old illuminati elite have a UN global agenda for the
    New World Order and UN AGENDA 21?

    Nah To big a lie?

    What did Goebels say about the size of the lie that works the best?
    One to big to believe, unless ya understand the Bilbe has to say about the
    end of days an all.

    First Bush and Bubba were all about the NWO huh..