John O. Brennan, President Obama's pick to lead the CIA, defended the administration's drone execution program before Congress on Thursday, saying that in war the commander in chief has the right to order a targeted killing — but agreeing that Congress should be more involved in knowing what is happening.
President Obama's practice of killing purported terrorists with airborne drone strikes overseas has ventured into uncharted legal territory. The maneuver is likely to trigger pointed questions when White House counterterrorism adviser John O. Brennan faces a Senate confirmation hearing Thursday as CIA director nominee.
U.S. military and intelligence agencies can legally kill American citizens overseas if they are al Qaeda leaders who pose an imminent threat to the United States and cannot be captured, U.S. Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. said Monday.
American drone strikes in southern Yemen have killed nine al Qaeda-linked militants, including the media chief for the group's Yemeni branch and the son of a prominent U.S.-born cleric slain in a similar attack last month, government officials and tribal elders said Saturday.
Al Qaeda's Yemeni offshoot on Monday confirmed the killing of U.S.-born militant cleric Anwar al-Awlaki late last month and vowed to avenge the prominent progagadist's death.
Some claim that the recent killing of radical cleric Anwar al-Awlaki and propagandist Samir Khan in Yemen violated international and U.S. law because they were both American citizens ("Obama's illegal assassination?" Comment & Analysis, Tuesday).
Yemen is a sanctuary for al Qaeda terrorists that is barreling into civil war and instability. Add into this the fact that tens of thousands of Yemenis hold U.S. passports, and Yemen emerges as the perfect habitat for a new al Qaeda threat: the American terrorist.
Al Qaeda's top bomb maker in Yemen did not die in a drone strike on a convoy, a top Yemeni official said Sunday, a report that dashed the hopes of U.S. officials who thought the attack might have killed a trio of top al Qaeda personnel.
A Saudi militant believed killed in the U.S. drone strike in Yemen constructed the bombs for the al Qaeda branch's most notorious attempted attacks — including the underwear-borne explosives intended to a down a U.S. aircraft, and a bomb carried by his own brother intended to assassinate a Saudi prince.