The first formal acknowledgement that the U.S. ordered the killing of an American in a drone strike was made Wednesday, just one day before President Obama’s anticipated speech on national security. Attorney General Eric Holder revealed in a letter to congressional leaders that four Americans were killed in drone attacks, including Anwar al-Awlaki. The 2011 death of al-Awlaki, a radical Muslim imam, was widely reported by the media as the responsibility of the U.S., but this is the first time that the administration formally acknowledged that he was deliberately killed. The other three Americans “were not specifically targeted,” Holder says.
Confession J. Scott Applewhite/AP