Does President 0bama’s Kill List amount to assassination?
Well, technically, I suppose it does. But that is not bad in itself. If so-called assassinations can achieve the objective with fewer people killed on all sides, I’m all for it. We’re not talking about heads-of-state.
In the first case, being a U.S. citizen should count for something. And if a U.S. citizen does not get a trial before his execution, I have a problem with that.
In the second case, we have the obvious international relations problems that arise from attacks on citizens of other countries on their soil. That is an act of war. Certainly, if we get permission it is not a problem. However, as in the case of bin Laden, if we try to get permission first, we lose time and very likely secrecy — the target would be tipped off and gone.
This is the problem the President faces. He must weigh the decision of whether attacks on individuals in other nations are worth the cost in our relationships with those nations. I do applaud the President’s going after Al Qaeda leaders. Although I do not like such attacks in countries with which we are not at war, I would not like having an easy shot and not taking it, either.
It seems that in this “War on Terror”, one can say the President has made bad choices. However, it seems that the only choices he has available are all bad.