Friday September 30th 2011 saw the death of American-born Anwar al-Awlaki, an al-Qaeda ‘leader’ of sorts. But it also cemented the new age of extra-judicial drone strikes and assassinations-without-trial. President Obama and the Department of Justice previously argued that the ordering of his death was a ‘state secret’ beyond the scrutiny of the courts. Obama became, in effect, one of the first Presidents to directly order the targeted killing of another American. His actions and the U.S. Government that he heads clearly undermined Fifth Amendment protections ‘No person shall be deprived of life without due process of law’ and perhaps even First Amendment rights (free speech). The Predator Empire is now here: extra-judicial assassinations from the sky, anytime, anywhere. The drone is more than an ‘unmanned plane’–it is the de facto tool of the Predator Empire, a brave new world.
See Ron Paul’s reaction here.