This extrajudicial execution of human beings constitutes a grave violation of international human rights law and, under certain circumstances, can also constitute a war crime under the Four Geneva Conventions of 1949. In addition, the extrajudicial execution of U.S. citizens by the United States government also violates the Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution mandating that no person “be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law.”
The U.S. Government has now established a “death list” for U.S. citizens abroad akin to those established by Latin American dictatorships during their so-called “dirty wars.” The Bush Administration reduced the United States of America to a Banana Republic waging a “dirty war” around the world in gross violation of international law, human rights law, and the laws of war. It is only a matter of time before the United States government will establish a similar “death list” targeting U.S. citizens living here at home. As someone who used to teach Constitutional Law, President Obama knows better.
Francis A. Boyle teaches at the University of Illinois College of Law.