Jake Tapper grilled White House flaksman Jay Carney about the demise of al-Awlaki today, to which Carney replied "I've got nothing" when asked about the details surrounding the death.
That's quite a change from the near nonstop gutsy call coverage of the UBL raid. Wonder why they are being so mysterious? Tapper kept pressing the constitutional authority, ie, now that he's dead why not release some details, but still nothing. Strange. Or perhaps there are more operations in the wings or they are being more careful to protect the operators this time.
Civil libertarians have a pretty good argument on this one--from whence comes Obama's authority to extra-judicially kill folks--but then again, so does everyone else who points out that it's pretty clear about his terrorist leanings. It's not like his name wasn't on emails to jihadi sleepers and or he didn't blare jihad talk on the web or his organization didn't take credit for downing a Boeing 747 or was not demonstrably involved in the package bomb plot. In reality he was on the top of a CIA most wanted list and his face was on Rewards for Justice and the FBI list.
Wait, his face was NOT on RFJ or the FBI lists. There was no reward for him. Nor was the face of the "Inspire" twerp Khan. Maybe a little weird at that. Surely there's a reason. Maybe Tapper can ask Carney next week.
First update, I can't believe it's October. Second, Debbie has more on Awlaki, including a story indicating that he wasn't the leader of AQAP, just one of their best outreach men. Still a blow to the western face of jihad, especially with the addition of Khan. Third, here's the Huffpo explaining how a secret DoJ letter (finding) authorized the targeting and accounted for "a due process in war". So now, after all these years, we are officially at war. Some of us have known that for awhile now.
Fourth, more good news--NATO/Afghan forces captured a senior member of the Haqqani network in Afghanistan last Tuesday, another guy named Khan, announcing it this morning after confirmation (and after blowing away Awlaki). Looking at several stories it's not clear where he was taken or whether the HIG group will get involved with any interrogations. Since he's the uncle of the current leaders of the network he should know a lot, which highlights why it's not always a good thing to simply blow people away.