When Eric Holder finally clarified, in a letter to Sen. Rand Paul, that the president does not have “the authority to use a weaponized drone to kill an American not engaged in combat on U.S. soil”, some breathed a sigh of relief. Yet Holder’s clarification came only after President Obama’s earlier response to the same question. “I haven’t killed anyone yet, and I have no intention of killing Americans. But I might.”
These differing responses invite the question — which answer is the truth and which is just politically expedient? Given the working definition of combatant as a male over 18 who happens to be in a bombing zone, are these answers actually the same? Upon which should I place my bet, when this president, or the next, has his finger on the trigger?
Metaphorically speaking of course. Because, presidents have agencies for that.