In an interview with Jessica Yellin on September 11th, Obama discussed the U.S.’ controversial drone program.
“You know, drones are one tool that we use. And our criteria for using them is very tight and very strict. It has to be a target that is authorized by our laws. It has to be a threat that is serious and not speculative,” Obama tells Jessica. “And we’ve got to make sure that in whatever operations we conduct, you know, we are very careful about avoiding civilian casualties. And in fact, there are a whole bunch of situations where we will not engage in operations if we think that there’s gonna be civilian casualties involved.”
“I think what the American people need to know is the seriousness with which we take both the responsibility to keep them safe, but also the seriousness with which we take the need for us to abide by our traditions of rule of law – and due process.”
“Look, I think that a president who doesn’t struggle with issues of war and peace and fighting terrorism and the difficulties of dealing with an opponent that has no rules – that’s something that you have to struggle with. Because, if you don’t, then it’s very easy to slip into a situation in which you end up bending rules thinking that the ends always justify the means.”