The Hill: The pro-rule of law argument against a ‘drone court’

Op-ed by Gabor Rona.

After many years of trying in vain to find the line between lawful and unlawful court-ordered killing, Supreme Court Justice Harry Blackmun threw up his hands. “From this day forward, I no longer shall tinker with the machinery of death,” he said, dissenting in a 1994 capital punishment case.

What does this have to do with drone attacks? Justice Blackmun was speaking about a man who had been charged, convicted, and sentenced for a crime established by a democratically elected legislature. Killing in war, on the other hand, generally involves no judicial process. And that’s perfectly legal if done in accordance with the laws of war.



Published on February 26, 2013


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