Tags: kargeted | killing | FOIA | Awlaki

WH Rejects FOI Requests for 'Targeted Killing' Papers

Thursday, 21 Jun 2012 07:08 AM

 

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
|  A   A  
  Copy Shortlink

The Obama administration has rejected requests from The New York Times and the American Civil Liberties Union seeking information about its "targeted killing" program against suspected terrorists, saying the release of the requested documents would harm national security.

Under the Freedom of Information Act, the Times and the ACLU sought records regarding the legal justifications for the alleged U.S. government killing of U.S. citizens and others associated with al-Qaida and other terrorist groups.

In a court document filed late Wednesday in New York in response to an ACLU lawsuit, the Justice Department said that "even to describe the numbers and details of most of these documents would reveal information that could damage the government's counterterrorism efforts."

The administration said the information requested is "highly classified," even though details of such operations have been leaked to the media.

"For example, whether or not the United States government conducted the particular operations that led to the deaths of Anwar al-Awlaki and the other individuals named in the FOIA requests remains classified," the government wrote. The U.S.-born al-Awlaki, an al-Qaida leader, was killed in a U.S. drone strike in Yemen in September.

"Likewise, whether or not the CIA has the authority to be, or is in fact, directly involved in targeted lethal operations remains classified," the government wrote.

In response to the government filing, ACLU Deputy Legal Director Jameel Jaffer said Thursday: "The notion that the CIA's targeted killing program is still a secret is beyond absurd. Senior officials have discussed it, both on the record and off."

The Justice Department, however, said, "None of those statements or reports constitutes an official disclosure that could vitiate agencies' ability to safeguard the classified and other statutorily protected information at issue here."

The administration acknowledged public concern about U.S. use of targeted killings, and said it has tried to "set forth for the American people the legal analysis and process involved in the determination whether to use lethal force." Those efforts have included speeches by a number of U.S. officials, including Attorney General Eric Holder.

But it maintained that the requested records would reveal "whether or not the U.S. government possesses specific intelligence information about particular individuals. Yet, Congress has made the judgment in the CIA Act and the National Security Act that information concerning such intelligence sources and methods should be exempt from public disclosure."

The ACLU's Jaffer said, "The public is entitled to know more about the legal authority the administration is claiming and the way that the administration is using it."

"We continue to have profound concerns with the power the administration is claiming and with the proposition that the president should be permitted to exercise this power without oversight by the courts," Jaffer said.

© Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
  Copy Shortlink
Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
Email:
Retype Email:
Country
Zip Code:
 
Hot Topics
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Around the Web
You May Also Like

Fresno School Slammed for Hiring White Teacher for Cultural Studies

Tuesday, 29 Jul 2014 16:25 PM

A flap over whether a white teacher should lead a class on African-American, Latino, and Southeast Asian cultural studie . . .

Fla. State Senator: Make Students See Movie 'America'

Tuesday, 29 Jul 2014 16:18 PM

Florida state Sen. Alan Hays wants students in the Sunshine State to learn real U.S. history, he tells Newsmax TV. . . .

California Insurance Rates Soar Up to 88% After Obamacare

Tuesday, 29 Jul 2014 15:48 PM

Health-care insurance premiums for individuals in California rose between 22 percent and 88 percent in 2014 from last ye . . .

Most Commented

Newsmax, Moneynews, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, NewsmaxWorld, NewsmaxHealth, are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

 
NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved