Rightly dividing the domestic jihadist from the enemy combatant in the "war against al-Qaeda" : why it matters in rendition and targeted killings
Jeffrey F. Addicott
Host item entries:
Case Western Reserve journal of international law, Vol. 45, no. 1, 2012, p. 259-302
The confusion associated with comprehending fundamental legal concepts associated with how America conducts the "war on terror" centers around the unwillingness of the U.S. government to properly distinguish al-Qaeda unlawful enemy combatants from domestic jihadi terrorists. If the American government cannot properly differentiate between an enemy combatant and a domestic criminal, it is little wonder that attendant legal positions associated with investigation techniques, targeted killing, arrest, detention, rendition, trial, and interrogation are subject to never-ending debate. While all al-Qaeda unlawful enemy combatants can be labelled as violent jihadists, not all violent jihadists are unlawful enemy combatants. Without a significant about-face in leadership that is willing to discern the basic difference between an unlawful enemy combatant and a domestic criminal, America's reputation will remain under a cloud of suspicion and confusion regarding the legality of our actions associated with two significant areas of critique : rendition and targeted killing vis-à-vis unlawful enemy combatants in the war on terror.