APRIL 13, 2012 1:06AM

Obama’s Global Drone Terrorism Shreds Concept of Rule of Law

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The nation’s first Black President has taken us on the final descent into international barbarity with his drone offensive. It is a joy stick to Hell. Glen Ford, Black Agenda Report

How can Obamacrats continue to ignore, minimize or even justify Obama’s ever escalating ILLEGITIMATE drone warfare?

Illegitimate war waging is the HIGHEST war crime.

Apparently in this election year, “Shhhhhhhhhhhh.” Don’t begin to call out a Democratic President for throwing out international law for what Glen Ford of Black Agenda Report sees as Obama’s drive for “full spectrum dominance” over the planet. Excuse me for uttering this question but wasn't that what Hitler was ultimately challenged for? When if ever will Obama be?

Not easily in Post-Morality America. Of course not, in the smoke and mirrors “lesser evilism” propaganda for one of the two heads of really one amoral corporate party. Propaganda by big media especially the so-called progressive Obama hucksters on MSNBC leading American lemmings horrifyingly to turn a blind eye and deaf ear to the terrorism this United States is inflicting all over the globe for corporate agendas NOW. Instead of panicking people about what will happen internationally if a Republican gets at the helm, why not take a hard look at what Obama is doing internationally?

Glen Ford calls out Obama’s international war criminality well:

The U.S. would elevate to a strategic principle its self-arrogated entitlement to use whatever technical means at its disposal – mainly drones – to target and kill designated adversaries at will, anyplace on the globe, at any time, accountable only to itself. It was a declaration of war against international law, as it has evolved over the centuries.

This administration has expanded the Air Force inventory of active drones to at least 7,500. Drones have joined Special Operations forces as the “tip of the spear” of U.S. power projection in the developing world, the “front lines” of the current imperial offensive.

Virtually all of the drones’ lethal missions are, in legal terms, assassinations, with or without “collateral damage.” They are also acts of terror, certainly in the broad sense of the word, and intended to be so.

Ford refers to an article by David Model that explores the drone violations of international law:

The first step in examining the legality of assassinating known or suspected terrorists through the use of unmanned armed vehicles (UAVs) is to decide whether such killings could be classified as part of an armed conflict.  If they are considered as part of an armed conflict, according to international law, the rules of armed conflict would apply; otherwise the laws of self-defence would be relevant.

According to the Geneva Conventions and customary humanitarian law, armed conflict only applies when two or more States are involved.  When the United States defines its campaign against terrorists as a global conflict, this designation is not based on the correct definition of war as characterized by international law but on America’s own interpretation of its effort to eradicate terrorism.  Only two or more States can legally, in the strictest terms, engage in war, not a State against individuals scattered around the globe.

Model suggests that drone warfare against specific terrorists or terrorist groups should not be waged by a US nation state, but instead said terrorists should be pursued via police action, enforcing criminal law. Criminal law provides due process for self-defense! The very nature of Obama's drone war-mongering is illegitimate.

Based on the existing literature, it is difficult to argue that the threat extended by a single or group of terrorists poses a threat to the security of the United States.  It could be argued that terrorist poses a threat to individuals or to property belonging to the United States in which case criminal law applies and the response requires police action not an armed attack by a State.

A further point reinforcing the argument of a police action is that these targets of drone attacks are suspects until due process condemns them for criminal acts.  Killing the suspect precludes the application of due process.

It is clearly evident that for a State to launch an attack by an UAV is a violation of international law and those responsible for such acts become suspects of war crimes.  Arbitrary killing of individuals around the world notwithstanding the justification cannot be in accordance with the rule of law under which certain norms of behaviour have been established for the treatment of individuals suspected of illegal acts.

Glen Ford on Obama's willful destruction of the right of due process at home and abroad:

Therefore, in the quest to make the entire world a free-fire (and law-free) zone, drone warfare requires that due process be destroyed everywhere, including within the borders of the United States. The Obama-shaped preventive detention bill signed into law this past New Years Eve is the logical extension of the international lawlessness called forth by drone warfare, and by the larger aims of full spectrum American dominance. Barack Obama is not just another “war president” – he is a destroyer of world civilization, the terms by which humans deal with one another as states, social groupings and individuals. It is not an exaggeration to describe this leap into depravity as a war against humanity at-large, and against the human historical legacy.

Drone warfare utterly shreds the very concept of the rule of law. In killing those “suspected” of committing or planning actions against the U.S., Washington “precludes the application of due process,” writes Model.

Ford declares that this President has taken on the authority to execute targeted individuals and attack other nation states at will with NO ACCOUNTABILITY! As Ford emphasizes, the hypocritical and amoral use of “humanitarian” military intervention is a FRAUD.

Certainly, it is a war against peace, the highest international crime. If a state can kill individuals and designated (or alleged) organizations by fiat, without due process or any shred of accountability to any authority but the president of the superpower, that state can also “execute” other states at will. Under Obama, the U.S. has articulated an alternative notion of global legality that purports to replace the body of international law accrued over centuries and so elegantly codified after World War Two. “Humanitarian” military intervention is the fraudulent doctrine through which the U.S. seeks to justify its current, desperate offensive against all obstacles to its global dominance.

Where George Bush often spoke in unilateralist terms of a U.S. mission to “spread democracy” as justification for his regime-changing aggression in Iraq and elsewhere, Obama invokes the higher calling of “humanitarian intervention” as a universal, pseudo-legal principle of international conduct. It is a doctrine designed for a Final Conflict for American supremacy on the planet, a doomsday construct that conflates perceived U.S. (corporate) geopolitical interests with the destiny of humankind – unbounded imperial criminality posing as the highest bar of justice!

Ford reminds us of Dr. Martin Luther King’s declaration during the Vietnam era that the United States is the “greatest purveyor of violence in the world today.” Ford sees Obama as taking the United States even beyond that “to an existential threat to world order, the rule of law, and the security of the Earth’s inhabitants – to civilization itself.”

Again, Mr. Ford declares:

The nation’s first Black President has taken us on the final descent into international barbarity with his drone offensive. It is a joy stick to Hell.

[cross-posted on correntewire and sacramento for democracy] 

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Obama's war crimes trial cannot be far off.
Only the US thinks targeted assassinations in any country are legit.
He makes either Bush look like posers when it comes to war crimes on this issue along Libby..
my 2 cents....
Needless to say, I agree with Mission's sentiments, however with the gutless democratic congress we are saddled with, there will be no domestic prosecutions in my estimation.

I'm sure I needn't inform You that as many many months ago, obama had launched four times as many such strikes in three years as bush did in eight.

I think more than just the media will be complicit in his ability to defy world opinion and continue the blood-letting, as we have people here on OS, who insist that obama is a "good and decent man" and "doing the best he can with the cards he's been dealt."

Then we have another equally inane group claiming that they are "radicals in support of obama," but when you break down their reasons they enumerate the friends of theirs who have been helped by obamacare, but with little regard for the forty to fifty uninsured citizens.

Keep up the good fight my friend. As You know, I think the guy should not be allowed to run for office, but should be running from criminal prosecution at the Hague for genocide and other war crimes.

had to go back to rate a second time - sorry.
We should fear the direction unmanned killing machines are in our skies. It might be satellites during our life time. Who has the biggest satellite wins. And then one satellite turns on the next and then......


" Man says, the martians have a gun pointed at the earth. Oh, no..Oh no....I've gotta move!" Who would have thought...."
Thanks, mission, wrapping one's heart around the reality of what is happening is hard enough. Wrapping one's heart around how the reality is being denied, minimized or justified is an even bigger challenge. As I put the above blog together I kept fighting myself and Glen Ford, that the bottom line wasn't what it seems to be. Reckless and devastating lawlessness on the part of our president and our country. I think of those lines in A Man for All Seasons about striking down the laws and then what hellish winds will blow destroying all. Thanks for your comment! best, libby
mark, thanks once again. What a blindered citizenry we are. What limited moral imaginations. Obama's faux incrementalism to help the citizenry is swallowed so obligingly since false hope seems to be chosen instead of real alternatives. so little commitment to the welfare of us, as you point out, as a national family. the same as the even more blindered stance on the global family of men and women and children. Power and winner takes all, including laws that have been established nationally and internationally? Obama not a details man, and that includes the laws both internationally and nationally? I know, I know, Obama is just the slick front person for the oligarchs. How cruel as Ford points out that our first black president would be such a trojan horse for the destruction of our democracy. To continue on from the corruption of the Bush regime and go farther than the Bush regime and receive cover as not being as bad as Bush and the Republicans. The window is closing on fighting fascism. All the sacrifice and courage and good work that went before us on our behalfs being undone. And a media that coaxes that we must get obama back in 2012 because THEN he will show his real liberal colors. Dear God. How many rounds of Lucy and the football are people willing to play? Three groups of people. Those that make things happen. Those that watch things happen. And those who ask too late, "WTF happened?" best, libby
Ande, yes, yes, yes. The US instead of setting moral precedents, is role modeling (and devastating and killing) in the wrong direction. Drones are being manufactured all over the globe and will proliferate and will be used against us. But those lost in what Kevin Zeese calls the F-O-G (forces of greed) don't give a rat's you know what what happens to humankind. Profits over people. 80 million people believed or hoped desperately that after Bush, sanity and morality would return to our governance. A cruel reality to find out that while Republicans were dominating the stage and facilitating corruption, the Dem Party was just as corrupt and when the government finally got rid of the nightmarish W Bush the Dem Party was just as captured by the sociopathic elite. A sociopathic elite willing to maim, murder and rob anyone, whether within or without this country. And a media that will manipulate the citizenry into believing that the Dem Party is where the good guys and gals dwell. "When good people do nothing" continues on. Media tells us what to deny, ignore, minimize, justify. As our educational system is being dismantled, how will our descendants fare? We who grew up knowing right vs. wrong, legal vs. illegal. Decency over might makes rightness!!! How a nation finally reached the tipping point with the Vietnam War horrors. And yet here we are again, or worse often, even within one lifetime!!! Thanks for commenting, Ande. I am glad this blog is being read it is so grave, but few endorsers. Glen Ford has offered a grave (the word that keeps coming to mind) reality check to us all. I feel the resistance myself to want to face the truth. so much cognitive dissonance in this team-gamesmanship election season when the supposed "lesser evil" is not lesser but full out evil. best, libby
typo in my comment to Ande, sorry, I meant to say "worse off" not "worse often" ...
This is well worth reading by Paul Craig Roberts:


"The US government pretends to live under the rule of law, to respect human rights, and to provide freedom and democracy to citizens. Washington’s pretense and the stark reality are diametrically opposed.

"US government officials routinely criticize other governments for being undemocratic and for violating human rights. Yet, no other country except Israel sends bombs, missiles, and drones into sovereign countries to murder civilian populations. The torture prisons of Abu Gahraib, Guantanamo, and CIA secret rendition sites are the contributions of the Bush/Obama regimes to human rights.

"Washington violates the human rights of its own citizens. Washington has suspended the civil liberties guaranteed in the US Constitution and declared its intention to detain US citizens indefinitely without due process of law. President Obama has announced that he, at his discretion, can murder US citizens whom he regards as a threat to the US.

"Congress did not respond to these extraordinary announcements with impeachment proceedings. There was no uproar from the federal courts, law schools, or bar associations. Glenn Greenwald reports that the Department of Homeland Security harasses journalists who refuse to be presstitutes, and we have seen videos of the brutal police oppression of peaceful OWS protestors. Chris Floyd describes the torture-perverts who rule the US.

"Now Washington is forcing as much of the world as it can to overthrow international treaties and international law. Washington has issued a ukase that its word alone is international law. Any country, except those who receive Washington’s dispensation, that engages in trade with Iran or purchases Iran’s oil will be sanctioned by the US. These countries will be cut off from US markets, and their banking systems will not be able to use banks that process international payments. In other words, Washington’s “sanctions against Iran” apply not to Iran but to countries that defy Washington and meet their energy needs with Iranian oil.

"According to the Christian Science Monitor, so far Washington has granted special privileges to Japan and 10 European Union countries to continue purchasing Iranian oil. Requiring countries to shutdown their economies in order to comply with Washington’s vendetta against Iran, a vendetta that has been ongoing ever since the Iranians overthrew the Washington-installed puppet, the Shah of Iran, more than three decades ago, was more than Washington could get away with. Washington has permitted Japan to keep importing between 78-85% of its normal oil imports from Iran.

"Washington’s dispensations, however, are arbitrary. Dispensations have not been granted to China, India, Turkey, and South Korea. India and China are the largest importers of Iranian oil, and Turkey and South Korea are among the top ten importers. Before looking at possible unintended consequences of Washington’s vendetta against Iran, what is Washington’s case against Iran?

"Frankly, Washington has no case. It is the hoax of “weapons of mass destruction” all over again. Iran, unlike Israel, signed the non-proliferation treaty. All countries that sign the treaty have the right to nuclear energy. Washington claims that Iran is violating the treaty by developing a nuclear weapon. There is no evidence whatsoever for Washington’s assertion. Washington’s own 16 intelligence agencies are unanimous that Iran has had no nuclear weapon’s program since 2003. Moreover, the International Atomic Energy Agency’s weapons inspectors are in Iran and have reported consistently that there is no diversion of nuclear material from the energy program to a weapons program."
They say that Nixon had to be the one to go to China to appease the right wing; now after the outrages of the Bush administration they seem to have decided that they needed to appease the left wing so they carried out the same policies with the first African American as president.

A lot of people are already catching on to this.
Thanks Zachd. I wish more were catching on to this. Amazing how ferociously people are willing to deny evil. Understandably, but dangerously for all of us. best, libby

toritto, drones via tampa's mcdill, too? i imagine them from nevada, but the institutionalized murder/extermination/surveillance business is spreading. thanks for commenting. did this blog jump the shark for many of my os new friends? sorry if that is so. best, libby