White House To Give Lawmakers Classified Drone Info
House and Senate intelligence committees will get classified information from the Justice Department that the White House feels will show the rationale for drone strikes against American citizens, according to a senior White House official.
Several lawmakers have pressed the White House for more information on how decisions are made to target U.S. citizens abroad follow the release this week of an unclassified “white paper” that the Justice Department sent key lawmakers last year. The unclassified memo says it is legal for the government to kill U.S. citizens abroad if it believes they are senior al-Qaida leaders continually engaged in operations aimed at killing Americans.
The official said Obama made the decision to send lawmakers the classified rationale on Wednesday as part of his “commitment to consult with Congress on national security matters.” Obama directed the Justice Department provide the Senate and House intelligence committees access to classified advice from its Office of Legal Counsel that the white paper is based on, the official said.