Debra J. Saunders

Last year, in the name of al-Awlaki's family, the American Civil Liberties Union filed a suit that challenged the administration's (still secret) "targeted killings" doctrine. A federal court in Washington dismissed the case, but al-Awlaki's death sows new opportunities in friendlier forums.

In 2007, al-Qaida operative Jose Padilla was convicted of "conspiracy to murder, kidnap and maim persons in a foreign country" and "material support for terrorism." From his prison cell, Padilla has filed lawsuits against a number of federal officials, including Yoo.

Obama's Department of Justice dropped its representation of two other Bush soldiers, former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and his deputy, Paul Wolfowitz. Attorney General Eric Holder renewed closed investigations into CIA interrogations. This administration has set a standard for harsh litigation techniques imposed on a previous administration's policy warriors. I hope Obama's lawyers are spared this fate. In this field, this president takes no prisoners.


Debra J. Saunders


 
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