|"Targeting killing" - statecraft from the dark side|
A fascinating illustration of the U.S.-Israel "good cop, bad cop" routine was on display at the University of Chicago last night (February 25, 2013).
Amos Guiora, an Israeli "counter-terrorism expert," held forth on the difference between "good" targeted killing -- i.e. the kind Israeli practices (!) -- and "bad" targeted killing -- namely, the kind the Obama administration carries out.
Ostensibly, the talk was about the fact that the Obama administration is taking too many liberties with its "secret kill lists." Much mention was made of the secret legal memo justifying the Obama killings. (You can download the secret memo here.) On its surface, the talk was disguised to be "critical" of what the U.S. is doing.
But what this talk was really about was conditioning the public to accept the idea that "targeted killing" is a legitimate activity of a government. Make no mistake, Guiora is the very model of a modern major military-intellocrat. After listening to him intone the words "targeted killing" in the midst of all his "point one, point two, point threes" and "I humbly submits" and "to wit, the followings" ... it was possible for one's mind to become numb, and to almost begin to think that "targeted killing" is a notion that we have to accept.
Almost. But not quite.
The most important thing for any of us to remember is that WE choose the frame of the debate - and we DON'T have to passively accept whatever we're offered. And certainly not from an apologist for state terror like Amos Guiora.
"Targeted killing" is not the business of a legitimate state. Full stop. (To coin an Amos Guioraism.)
PS - In the course of eliminating the drone menace, a MAJOR task will be understanding the way in which the United States and Israel have conducted an intimate two-step to (1) justify their own state terror against civilians, and then after provoking resistance by those civilians, (2) used that resistance to trump up the idea of "The Terrorist Threat," against which a global permanent war must be waged, complete with abject state of permanent fear on the part of all of us, and abdication of all the checks on government power that might possibly stop the killing.
Watch the Amos Guiora talk at cis.uchicago.edu. Judge for yourself. And then get involved in changing the terms of the debate.
For immediate release
Sunday, February 24, 2013
Israeli Drone War Expert to Illustrate Ties between Gaza Atrocities, Obama Administration Killings, say Activists
Monday, February 25th, 6:00 pm, 1414 E. 59th Street
For more information:
Kait McIntyre, Anti-War Committee, 815-988-8631
Joe Iosbaker, Anti-War Committee, 773-301-0109
Hatem Abudayyeh, United States Palestinian Community Network, 773-301-4108
Area antiwar activists say a Chicago lecture on Monday by an Israeli legal theorist who has helped provide the justifications for "targeted killing" programs like the one pursued by the Obama Administration, illustrates a clear tie between Israeli atrocities in Gaza and the U.S. drone killing program.
Entitled “Legitimate Target: A Criteria Based Approach to Targeted Killing,” the talk by Amos Guiora at the University of Chicago is expected to lay out a formula developed and used countless times by the Israeli government before ultimately being adopted by the Bush and Obama administrations.
“When Guiora was Israel's Legal Advisor for the Gaza Strip, he said Palestinians killed and injured are ‘legitimate targets,’” said Hatem Abudayyeh of the United States Palestinian Community Network. “Guiora’s use of words like “collateral damage" and "legitimate targets" has now been adopted by the U.S. to cover the thousands massacred by extrajudicial U.S. drone strikes in Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Yemen.”
As the calls for the release of the secret legal memo justifying the Obama Administration's targeted drone killing program increase nationwide, Chicago-area activists say the legal essentials of the Administration policy are being laid clear for all to see in the lecture by the Israeli expert.
“As another Israeli legal advisor, Daniel Reisner, has said, ‘International law progresses through violations,” said Kait McIntyre, protest organizer with the Anti-War Committee of Chicago. “According to Reisner, ‘[Israel] invented the targeted assassination thesis and [Israel] had to push it. Eight years later it is in the center of the bounds of legitimacy.’
The Anti-War Committee of Chicago and the United States Palestinian Community Network, together with a coalition of anti-war and solidarity groups, will hold a protest at the University of Chicago’s International House against Amos Guiora's talk, beginning with at 6:00 press conference in front of 1414 E. 59th Street.