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Paul Craig Roberts: The US is Now an Official Police State

The people who should have been on trial are the people who abducted her, disappeared her young children, shipped her across international borders, violated her civil liberties, tortured her apparently for the fun of it, raped her, and attempted to murder her with two gunshots to her stomach. Instead, the victim was put on trial and convicted. This is the unmistakable hallmark of a police state. And this victim is an American citizen. Anyone can be next. Indeed, on Feb. 3 Dennis Blair, director of national intelligence told the House Intelligence Committee that it was now “defined policy” that the U.S. government can murder its own citizens on the sole basis of someone in the government’s judgment that an American is a threat. No arrest, no trial, no conviction, just execution on suspicion of being a threat. This shows how far the police state has advanced. A presidential appointee in the Obama administration tells an important committee of Congress that the executive branch has decided that it can murder American citizens abroad if it thinks they are a threat. I can hear readers saying the government might as well kill Americans abroad as it kills them at home – Waco, Ruby Ridge, the Black Panthers. Yes, the U.S. government has murdered its citizens, but Dennis Blair’s “defined policy” is a bold new development. The government, of course, denies that it intended to kill the Branch Davidians, Randy Weaver’s wife and child, or the Black Panthers. The government says that Waco was a terrible tragedy, an unintended result brought on by the Branch Davidians themselves. The government says that Ruby Ridge was Randy Weaver’s fault for not appearing in court on a day that had been miscommunicated to him. The Black Panthers, the government says, were dangerous criminals who insisted on a shootout. In no previous death of a U.S. citizen by the hands of the U.S. government has the government claimed the right to kill Americans without arrest, trial, and conviction of a capital crime.

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