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.

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Published on February 26, 2013

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