‘We Hope This Information Has Been Helpful’

The ACLU’s long-running effort to shed light on the government’s “targeted killing” program has had its share of breakthroughs — most importantly, the Second Circuit Appeals Court's release of a July 2010 Justice Department Office of Legal Counsel memorandum laying out the purported legal justification for the extrajudicial killing of an American citizen.

But while we’ve been at it for more than half a decade, the government continues to stonewall. For years in our Freedom of Information Act lawsuits, the government claimed that it could not even “confirm or deny” the existence of records related to the program — a program that was, even then, openly discussed in the media, in the halls of Congress, and in government officials’ formal speeches. Then the government refused to identify or release records that the courts finally forced it to admit it had.

Today, that — um — changed.

This morning, the ACLU actually received a responsive targeted-killing record from the government. It sums up the government’s current stance with respect to disclosures relating to the program.

Targeted-killing record sent by the government

Eight pages completely redacted, with this at the end:

Targeted-killing memo from Office of Legislative Affairs

How’s that for “helpful”?

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Anonymous

-----------------------------Hope my comments were helpful

Anonymous

Transparent as above the law.

Anonymous

Sigh. We once had a FOIA request in which the requestor's previous phone number and his mother's address were blacked out, among other ridiculous things. (The agency lobbyist's name is classified??) Where is Jon Stewart when we need him? Keep up the good work - the moral arc of the universe is long, but it bends toward justice. Or so I've heard.

Anonymous

John Stewart doesn't care btw.

Anonymous

gov't trying to troll hard...

Anonymous

What's the redaction reason that (b)(3) refers to?

Anonymous

I once got back a FOIA request with a lot of redactions on the documents, which I expected. But I WAS surprised to see the blacking-out of the initials of the classification officer who authorized the redactions.

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Its above the all things.

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