Legal News

Feds to Provide Legal Framework on “Targeted Killing” of U.S. Citizens Abroad
Download PDF
1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (No Ratings Yet)

The policy makers and lawmakers in Washington have been plagued with questions since the killing of U.S. citizen by birth, Anwar al-Awlaki by a drone attack in Yemen, five months back.

Monday, during a major speech at Northwestern University law school, the Attorney General Eric Holder would describe the framework under which lethal force may be used for targeted killing of Americans residing overseas. The news was released on Sunday night by Obama administration officials.

Though Obama and Bush administrations have used civilian and military courts to convict and sentence both U.S.-born and foreign terrorists quite successfully, at least three lawsuits have been filed asking the Obama administration to publicly release the justification buried in a secret Justice Department memo that allowed the use of lethal force and targeted killing of al-Awlaki in Yemen.


The lawsuits have compelled the Obama administration to consider the extent of the legal justification they can release to the public.

The Attorney General holds that the use of lethal force on Americans residing abroad is considered legal under a Sept. 18, 2001, joint congressional resolution that was enacted a week after the 9/11 attacks. The resolution allowed the authorities to use all required power to forestall any further acts of international terrorism against the U.S.

According to the administration, a Nigerian, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab was tried and sentenced to life in prison after his arrest and subsequent confession of plans to blow up an international flight during Christmas 2009. During the interrogation of the convict it was revealed that his mission was Okayed by al-Awlaki during a three day session.

Get JD Journal in Your Mail

Subscribe to our FREE daily news alerts and get the latest updates on the most happening events in the legal, business, and celebrity world. You also get your daily dose of humor and entertainment!!

The administration holds that it was sufficient to show that al-Alwaki was dangerous to the United States and its public, as he plotted, approved, and sent on mission agents to make terrorist strikes on U.S. targets.

However, the full release of the legal justification for sending a drone to kill al-Alwaki may never happen.


Interesting Legal Sites You May Like




Search Now

Mid-Level Commercial Business Litigator

USA-CA-Los Angeles

Los Angeles office is seeking a commercial business litigation attorney with 2-5 years of experience...

Apply Now

Senior Level Litigator

USA-CA-Woodland Hills

Woodland Hills office is seeking a litigation attorney with 5-7 years of experience and a background...

Apply Now

Litigation Associate Attorney


Stamford office of our client seeks litigation associate attorney with 3+ years of experience. The c...

Apply Now

Experienced Estate Planning Attorney


Torrance office is seeking an estate planning attorney with 7-10 years of experience.

Apply Now




The ideal candidate will have 2-3 years’ experience as an attorney, who is passionate about br...

Apply now

Legal Secretary / Paralegal


Have need of a legal secretary / paralegal to prepare legal documents for court filing and estate pl...

Apply now

Medical Malpractice Associate

USA-CA-Los Angeles

Downtown Los Angeles medical malpractice defense firm seeks 2-4 year associate attorney with persona...

Apply now

Immigration Attorney


Responsibilities: Make appearances in immigration court at Master Calendars and Individual Hea...

Apply now


To Top