U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder Defends The Government’s Authorization Of Drone Strikes On U.S Citizens
By: Victor Trammell
The Obama Administration has had to deal with a
lot of criticism from opposing government officials and citizens alike over issues concerning the increased use of executive-ordered Predator Drone strikes by the CIA and other government agencies.
However, the U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder (pictured) has defended the constitutionality of the government’s use of the drones. Holder also validated the new orders, which authorize drone strikes against U.S. citizens who engage in international terrorism.
Eric Holder wrote a letter
addressed to Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) that laid out the Obama Administration’s authority to conduct drone strikes against domestic terrorists. Holder said in the letter that such government power prevents attacks against U.S. soil but that a drone strike on a U.S. citizen to prevent a home grown attack is “unlikely to occur.” A portion of Holder’s letter read:
“The U.S. government has not carried out drone strikes in the United States and has no intention of doing so. As a policy matter, moreover, we reject the use of military force where well-established law enforcement authorities in this country provide the best means for incapacitating a terrorist threat. It is possible, I suppose, to imagine an
extraordinary circumstance in which it would be necessary and appropriate under the Constitution and applicable to the laws of the United States for the president to authorize the military to use lethal force within the territory of the United States.” (The Associated Press)
However, when Attorney General Eric Holder was questioned at a U.S. Senate panel meeting on Wednesday, he seemingly admitted that a hypothetical drone strike against a
U.S-born terrorist before they are brought to trial would be unconstitutional. This important issue will continue to be debated by government officials at the federal level in the coming months.