Department of Circular Definitions

Apparently, it is official US policy now that any adult male killed in done and other attacks be labelled a "militant".  Was the drone strike yesterday that killed 12 men really necessary, Mr. President?  Of course, they were all militants.

By the way, kudos to Greenwald to holding his "side" accountable, without even a token "but of course the other side is worse" dilution.  Both Conservatives and Liberals can learn from it.

  • Ted Rado

    While I am generally in sympathy with our military leaders who are trying to wage war against the terrorists, I am bothered by this drone business. We use them in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen, etc. I wonder what Americans would think if, for example, the Brits, French, or Germans were after terrorists working out of the US and attacked targets in our neighborhood? I imagine there would be outrage. I hope there is a good explanation, but it seems as though we are abusing our power. I am sure many people in those countries, who might otherwise be friendly toward the US, are turned off by the drone attacks.

  • Mike S

    Of course, Obama's changing definition of "militant" is consistent with the administration's ad-hoc method of fighting terrorism, and goes nicely with the NDAA-granted powers of being able to indefinitely detain anyone they declare to be a terrorist threat (it's anyone we detain indefinitely!) and the secret death panels that decide whom to assassinate without due process.

    I bet the DEA and various SWAT agencies around the nation are anxious to follow this practice. It'd completely end the problem of wrong addresses! Now, instead of raiding the wrong house, shooting the family pets, and beating innocent family members and then having to deal with media fall-out... there simply *are no* wrong addresses! If a house gets hit in a raid, then by definition, that house was a drug house! Everyone was complicit! Combine "No innocents" with civil asset forfeiture, and the government can kill anyone and take anything!

  • Bill

    Brings to mind an interpretive sign at the site of the Bear River Massacre in Southeast Idaho, where in 1863, U.S. Cavalry annihilated a winter encampment of Shoshones, many of whom were old men, women, and children. In describing the casualties, the sign refers to "women, children, and other hostiles."

  • Mark2

    @Mike S. Part of the problem is that we are no longer allowed to interrogate captives because, interrogation is torture. So now there is no value in keeping anyone alive. May as well just kill them.

    Of course it is sadly funny that the folks who are so up in arms over torture /w waterboarding don't seem to realize that waterboarding is preferable to having ones "rights" permanently taken away by a Hellfire missile.

  • Will

    Just like everyone killed in Vietnam were Viet Kong, even if they were just villagers.

  • Mark2

    @Will what exactly is a villager?

  • DoctorT

    "@Will what exactly is a villager?"

    A future dead militant.

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  • me

    It ought to point out that Obama is pretty far from Glen Greenwalds side (Greenwald is a liberal "leftist"; Obama is a centrist fascist).

  • http://tjic.com TJIC

    > Apparently, it is official US policy now that any adult male killed in done and other attacks be labelled a “militant”.

    I try to avoid "1984" comparisons, because that's a mark of a crank.

    ...but...

    OMG. 1984.

  • http://tjic.com TJIC

    > By the way, kudos to Greenwald to holding his “side” accountable, without even a token “but of course the other side is worse” dilution. Both Conservatives and Liberals can learn from it.

    Agreed. I've been impressed by that.

  • MJ

    I try to avoid “1984″ comparisons, because that’s a mark of a crank.

    …but…

    OMG. 1984.

    Except that these "militants" are not given the opportunity to recant and profess their love for Brother before being offed.

  • Gil

    Would it be prefered if the word "alleged" preceded "militants"?

  • anoNY

    Might as well label all male children "combatants" as well, seeing as how there are plenty of child soldiers in the world...

  • Jim Collins

    These armed drones are not military. They are operated by the CIA and other 3 letter organizations.

  • Sam L.

    I am amazed by Greenwald. Is this a first for him?

    Obama a "centrist fascist"? Anyone else her think he's "centrist"?

  • jaxman

    Reminds me of the film "Full Metal Jacket". A helicopter door gunner is shooting indiscriminately at Vietnamese as they fly over. He says: "Anyone who runs is a VC. Anyone who stands still is a well disciplined VC."

  • hedge

    Nope, Greenwald has been tearing the last two presidents new ones on a regular basis for kicking the constitution and violating human and civil rights. The centrist and fascist labels are "me", not Greenwald.

  • me

    Greenwald, btw, is good for a lot of things: here's how he distills down the fundamental issue with the wars we're engaged in (view of the average American)

    (1) I have absolutely no idea who my government is continuously bombing to death by drone, but I assume they deserve it;

    (2) when my government extinguishes the lives of entire families, including small children, as it often does, I know it’s all for a just and important cause even if I can’t identify it; and,

    (3) we have to stop the Terrorists, because they keep killing innocent civilians.

    Sometimes I feel like he's the one voice of reason left in this country.