How many war crimes can a Nobel Peace Prize winner commit? While the list of unconstitutional acts President Obama has committed could fill a book, let us focus today on Obama’s war crimes. These are the worse seven of his war crimes.
Killing American “Terrorists” Abroad without Oversight
One of the most egregious Obama war crimes is the affording of full legal protection to those in Guantanamo Bay while killing Anwar al-Awlaki. Anwar al-Awlaki was an American citizen by birth. He was identified as a terrorist, and a drone strike was authorized via a “kill list”. There was no trial to find him guilty and sentence him to death. “Common Dreams” reported May 29, 2012 that Obama personally oversees this secret kill list.
The Obama administration simply put him and a number of other accused terrorists on lists and then killed them. To make matters worse, his American born sixteen year old son was killed in a subsequent drone strike only two weeks later. It is a war crime to execute citizens abroad based on an executive order, without either a trial or judicial oversight.
The attack on the Benghazi, Libya embassy was initially blamed on a YouTube video. Increasing evidence shows that the President abdicated his responsibility to authorize a rescue, perhaps to Valerie Jarrett. Why weren’t the ambassador and his body guard not aided, except for two former military men who joined them over the six hour attack? Business Insider reported in August, 2013 that the CIA was working out of the Benghazi location, which was never formally identified as an embassy.
The CIA is suspected of smuggling weapons to Libyan rebels, some of which ended up in the hands of Syrian rebels. What is worse than letting an ambassador die during an assault that lasted at least six hours, when there were commanders in North Africa and Italy begging to help? What is worse is using a collapsed nation as a cover for smuggling weapons to Muslim extremists who will probably use those weapons in Jihad against Christians, Jews and secularists as well as the dictators Obama wanted overthrown. Ambassador Stevens’ death simply brought attention to the Obama administration funneling weapons to various opposition groups, essentially supporting factions without having officially declared war against those nations’ leaders. This is why the death of four Americans in Benghazi is associated with Obama’s war crimes.
Undeclared War in Yemen
The U.S. has deployed drones around the world in the name of killing terrorists. While strikes in Pakistan receive attention due to the large number of civilians killed, it is Yemen that should give us pause. President Bush received permission from Congress to invade Iraq and Afghanistan. Pakistan’s drone strikes could be justified as capturing those terrorists who fled from Afghanistan to Pakistan. When did we declare war on Yemen? The short answer is: we didn’t.
According to CNN, a Yemeni Defense Ministry official said 34 people had been killed in a dozen drone strikes in August, 2013 alone. The undeclared war in Yemen may be worse than the undeclared war against Libya. Obama has refused to bother consulting Congress in either war as required by the War Powers Act. At least in Libya he bothered to inform them of his actions.
Unlike drone strikes in Pakistan, Obama’s war crimes in Yemen are the unmitigated invasion of a nation without permission of its government, killing terrorists and civilians without Congressional approval.
Drone Double Taps
A double tap refers to when a target is shot for a second time to ensure that it is dead. Josh Begley has been tracking drone strikes since 2002. And he has found that the U.S. is now utilizing drones to “double tap” a target. Shooting it with a missile once often kills everyone in the building or vehicle. Shooting it a second time ensures that anyone trapped in the rubble is dead, and it increases the odds that the U.S. will kill first responders like ambulance drivers and civilian rescuers. Double taps by drones ensure that innocent bystanders will be killed in addition to the intended target. The deliberate targeting of civilians is a war crime, and the high civilian death toll of double taps makes them one of Obama’s war crimes.
Supporting Terrorists, Ignoring True Democracy, in the Middle East
Obama says that our strikes in the Middle East and efforts are to promote democracy. The Green movement in Iran in 2009 was a true protest and effort for democracy, revolting against the oppression of the clerics. Obama said and did nothing. Yet his administration has ousted secular dictators like Gaddafi in Libya and Morsi in Egypt, only to see groups like the Muslim Brotherhood rise to power in their place. In Syria, Obama supports the Muslim Brotherhood and Iranian mullah backed rebels over a secular dictator. Never mind that these rebels have beheaded atheists and killed Christians. Whether dangerously naÃ¯ve or deliberately sympathetic to Muslim extremists, he routinely supports Muslim radicals taking over whole nations.
Fast and Furious
Operation Fast and Furious is described as the ATF permitting guns to be bought by Mexican criminals and smuggled into Mexico. These guns were supposed to be traced to their destination so that Mexican drug lords and gangs could be arrested. Instead, the administration lost track of the weapons. Guns from Fast and Furious were used to kill Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry, dozens of teenagers at a birthday party in Mexico and murder innocents on both sides of the border. The Reese family was arrested for providing guns as part of the Fast and Furious program, despite repeated orders from law enforcement to sell guns to unauthorized parties. Yet several of the Mexicans identified in Operation Fast and Furious for apprehension were able to cross the border at will, since the ATF didn’t tell the Border Patrol who should be detained.
Was Operation Fast and Furious intended to smuggle weapons into Mexico before fingering gun ownership in the U.S. as the culprit for Mexican deaths, thus justifying a crackdown on Americans’ rights to own guns? Or was it a horrifically inept effort to track Mexican gunrunners without tracing their steps in the U.S. or Mexico, failing to keep the FBI, Border Patrol or even Mexican officials informed? The true answer may be a combination of the two. However, the deliberate funneling of thousands of weapons to drug lords to fuel Mexico’s civil war with the narco-terrorists within its borders and the spill-over violence in the U.S. should be considered one of Obama’s war crimes.
How Does the U.S. Benefit from War Crimes Like This?
A disproportionate amount of American aid to nations like Egypt and Israel funnel right back to defense contractors in the U.S. For example, aid to Egypt has included jets, tanks and munitions. Aid to Israel includes missile defense systems and weapons modernization programs. Therefore, much of the money earmarked to help its allies ends up profiting defense contractors like Lockheed Martin, Northrup Grumman and Raytheon.
The United States has been accused of fighting wars for oil. The last 20 years cause us to question this anti-war slogan. Saddam Hussein was thrown out of office and executed by his people. Iraq’s biggest oil contracts were then given to China, not U.S. companies. However, the first Iraq invasion was driven by the desire to help Kuwait and gain the favor of Saudi Arabia, major exporters of oil to the U.S.
In the case of Fast and Furious, the gunrunning operation makes the ATF look like it is “doing something” about Mexican gangs and the crimes committed by Mexican drug lords. If it becomes justification for denying Americans the right to own guns for self-defense, this makes his liberal base happy. If it leads to the arrest of many gangbangers and drug lords, it makes the Obama administration look tough on crime without having to confront the chaos in U.S. major cities mostly committed by young black men, a group the black President and black Attorney General see as victims of the white majority.
The United States has gotten involved in conflicts in Sudan, Yemen, Egypt, Libya and others around the Mediterranean and Red Sea in the name of stabilizing the region. While the U.S. does not directly control the flow of oil in the region, it does seek to put governments that prefer sending oil tankers to the U.S. than those that send oil to China or Europe. Terrorists blow up pipelines and kill oil workers, driving up the price of oil. Given Americans’ dependence on oil, the price of oil is a paramount concern regardless of its source. This is why the U.S. intervenes for the sake of “stability”, preventing disruptions in the flow of oil through the Persian Gulf or Syrian pipeline.
The United States also gets involved to protect Israel, one of its allies in the region. Israel has no strategic value in the area, yet political and even military actions in places like Syria and Lebanon are taken to protect that nation.
Killing accused terrorists via drones and without oversight has several advantages for the Obama administration. First, it provides the appearance of “doing something” about terrorism. There are jokes in the media about how short-lived the #2 Al Qaeda head is, usually being killed within a few months of being selected.
A second benefit of using drones is the perceived lives saved; Americans are tired of wars, which is why they oppose action in Syria. Drone strikes permit Obama to kill terrorists and political upstarts in the region without rows of dead American soldiers. Unfortunately, these strikes lead to piles of dead civilians and, perhaps, an occasional terrorist.
One of Obama’s war crimes is the complete lack of oversight of these strikes. Killing people because they may be associated with Al-Qaeda is not sufficient cause, given that 10% of all Muslims in various polls support Jihad. Killing people based on secret evidence, without verification of their identities or ties, not caring whether 20 relatives die when a home is bombed and deliberately striking three times within 20 minutes to ensure that all present die but failing to consider the added losses of rescuers make this approach one of Obama’s war crimes.
What would be your worst Obama war crimes? Comment below…