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The latest high-profile case to raise this issue was the assassination of American-born YouTube preacher Anwar al-Awlaki, who was killed by Hellfire missiles fired from a drone in September. There wasn't a move to attempt to interview al-Awlaki, he was just blown to smithereens. And to many civil libertarians, that exercise of power against an American citizen is far more threatening than what we saw from the Bush administration. "How can anyone who vocally decried Bush’s mere eavesdropping and detention powers without judicial review possibly justify Obama’s executions without judicial review?"

How? Because al-Awlaki was at war with the United States. He was a soldier and he died in a war. This is not new. We don't require judicial review before pulling the trigger in war.

What would be new is eavesdropping on millions of Americans because we might learn something about the war. That we should not do.

Rodriguez: "How could it be more ethical to kill people rather than capture them?"

What he means is:

How could it be more ethical to kill people rather than capture them and torture them?

Only the ethically challenged cannot see the answer to that question.

And there is a practical side: snatch and grab operations are extremely difficult and generally upset our allies more than drone strikes.

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