President Obama's National Security Speech

ACLU Comment on President Obama's National Security Speech

President Obama is right to say that we cannot be on a war footing forever – but the time to take our country off the global warpath and fully restore the rule of law is now, not at some indeterminate future point. Four years into his presidency, President Obama has finally taken the first steps to jumpstart his administration's effort to make good on early campaign promises to close Guantánamo and recognized the human cost of failing to act. These are encouraging and noteworthy actions.

To the extent the speech signals an end to signature strikes, recognizes the need for congressional oversight, and restricts the use of drones to threats against the American people, the developments on targeted killings are promising. Yet the president still claims broad authority to carry out target killings far from any battlefield, and there is still insufficient transparency. We continue to disagree fundamentally with the idea that due process requirements can be satisfied without any form of judicial oversight by regular federal courts.

Read ACLU Executive Director Anthony D. Romero's statement in full here.

The Speech

In a widely anticipated speech today, President Barack Obama discussed the future of the country's national security policy, addressing issues ranging from Guantánamo to the U.S. targeted killing program.

Transcript of President Obama's National Security Speech - May 23rd, 2013

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