U.S. to Justify Killing American Terrorists

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US Attorney General Eric Holder during a press conference in Washington, D.C. on February 14, 2012.

Attorney General Eric Holder is expected to give the most detailed explanation yet of the Obama administration’s rational for killing U.S. citizens abroad. Critics have demanded a more thorough explanation since last year's killing of the New Mexico–born Anwar al-Awlaki, who was suspected of working with al Qaeda. In Awlaki’s killing, the administration relied on a classified opinion written by the Justice Department’s legal counsel, but has refused to release the document. Sources tell The Washington Post that Holder will argue that a 2001 congressional authorization of the use of military force also justified the government to kill American terrorists abroad. Newsweek’s Daniel Klaidman first reported on the speech in January.