Ohio Democratic Rep. Dennis Kucinich says President Barack Obama’s administration has refused to show Congress any documents detailing the legal justification for drone strikes overseas.
Kucinich is currently building bipartisan support for a resolution that would force the Obama administration to demonstrate the legality of the drone program.
The resolution is co-sponsored by Texas Republican Rep. Ron Paul, New Jersey Democratic Rep. Rush Holt, Michigan Republican Rep. Justin Amash, Massachusetts Democratic Rep. James P. McGovern and California Democratic Rep. Barbara Lee.
“Thus far, the administration has refused to release the memo or any documents, despite multiple requests from members of Congress on both sides of the aisle,” Kucinich said in a statement on Friday. “Intelligence operations that have virtually no transparency, accountability or oversight raise serious legal questions, particularly when such programs may constitute possible violations of international law or the Constitution of the United States.
Kucinich told The Daily Caller on Capitol Hill this week that Obama is bypassing Congress by authorizing drone strikes overseas.
“Regardless of your support of our drone program, Congress and the American people deserve to know which laws the United States is relying on to conduct this program, and how they are interpreted by the executive branch,” Kucinich said.
If the resolution of inquiry passes Congress, it would require Attorney General Eric Holder to “transmit to the House of Representatives not later than 14 days after the date of the adoption of this resolution, any documents and legal memoranda in the Attorney General’s possession relating to the practice of targeted killing of United States citizens and targets abroad.”
The drone strikes “violate the U.S. Constitution, kill innocent people and stain our nation’s moral consciousness,” Kucinich said. Daily Caller
In 2008, after Barack Obama won the presidency in the U.S., the drone strikes escalated and soon began occurring almost weekly, later nearly daily, and so became a permanent feature of life for those living in the tribal borderlands of northern Pakistan.
The CIA and the U.S. military use drones to target and kill those Washington describes as “suspected militants” in Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iraq, Yemen, Somalia and Libya.
A report on the secret drone war in Pakistan says the attacks have killed far more civilians than acknowledged, traumatized a nation and undermined international law. In “Living Under Drones,” researchers conclude the drone strikes “terrorize men, women, and children, giving rise to anxiety and psychological trauma among civilian communities.” Democracy Now
“The number of ‘high-level’ militants killed as a percentage of total casualties is extremely low — estimated at just 2% [of deaths]”, says the report.
According to revised military stats revealed on December 6, the U.S. launched 447 drone attacks in Afghanistan this year. That makes Afghanistan, not Pakistan or Yemen, the epicenter of U.S. drone attacks, The Wired reports.