[W]ouldn’t it be preferable to at least require the President to demonstrate to a court that probable cause exists to warrant the assassination of an American citizen before the President should be allowed to order it? That would basically mean that courts would issue “assassination warrants” or “murder warrants” — a repugnant idea given that they’re tantamount to imposing the death sentence without a trial — but isn’t that minimal safeguard preferable to allowing the President unchecked authority to do it on his own, the very power he has now claimed for himself? [sic]
Yeah, I don’t know. How about this:
|Legal Status||Approval Needed to Kill|
|foreign suspect||some guy|
|citizen suspect||President … AND a judge!|
|resident alien suspect (no green card)||internet poll|
|resident alien suspect (w/ green card)||internet poll of judges|
|tourist suspect||President AND Magic 8-ball|
|tourist suspect with bratty, grubby children complaining loudly about how much better everything is in their crappy foreign hellhole of a country||Vice-President AND Rochambeau (best 3 out of 5)|
|six-year-old non-suspect standing next to any of the above||only if you feel like it|
|cast member of “Jersey Shore”||see unlucky six-year-old, above|
I think mine -while repugnant – has some obvious advantages, especially with regard to Mr. Situation. But, you know, I’m easy. We should take our time. The important thing about codifying laws for the New Kind of War is that you really want to be as comfortable as possible with them, because we are going to have to live with them forever. I mean, unless New Kind of War somehow somehow gets superceded by an even Newer, even more Totally Badass and Unprecedented and Extreme Kind of War – a Nü Wär, if you will – in which case I guess we’ll have to scrap everything and start over … oh, wait, what am I even talking about? What am I thinking? You can’t just break The Law, silly!
What am I saying is that this – like the question of whether or not we are more humane than the Spanish Inquisition – is real, real, real interesting, on a certain level, but mostly just a sign of how we’ve come to accept the War On Terror as an immutable fact of life. We’ve accepted that it’s the sort of thing that happens to Other People, but not nice Americans. We’ve made our Peace with it, if you will. Hmm. Making Peace … with War. Nope, I don’t see any way this could go wrong. Kind of amazing nobody thought of this before.