January 4, 2012
“My Administration has consistently opposed such measures. Ultimately, I decided to sign this bill not only because of the critically important services it provides for our forces and their families and the national security programs it authorizes, but also because the Congress revised provisions that otherwise would have jeopardized the safety, security, and liberty of the American people. Moving forward, my Administration will interpret and implement the provisions described in a manner that best preserves the flexibility on which our safety depends and upholds the values on which this country was founded.”
The president went onto say that the provisions in question – specifically Sect. 1021, which he said merely “affirms the executive branch’s authority to detain persons covered by the 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force.” He describes the provision as “unnecessary.”
President Obama stated: “Two critical limitations in section 1021 confirm that it solely codifies established authorities. First, under section 1021(d), the bill does not limit or expand the authority of the President or the scope of the Authorization for Use of Military Force. Second, under section 1021(e), the bill may not be construed to affect any existing law or authorities relating to the detention of United States citizens, lawful resident aliens of the United States, or any other persons who are captured or arrested in the United States.”
In other words, the president is using Washingtonspeak to say he already had the authority to do what the NDAA law merely “codifies.” So the danger that many Americans, lawmakers and advocacy groups are concerned about is why this president claimed the authority to kill an American citizen in... who had not actually carried out any terrorist attacks against the U.S., but was only suspectedof wrongdoing.