The Legacy of Barack Obama
Now that Barack Obama’s presidency has been over a few months, many are saying what a great president he was, and stating their nostalgia for him. They claim he stood for freedom and the rights of minorities. The people saying this have either forgotten, or don’t know about the executive power grabs, drone strikes and mass surveillance. President Obama was actually a very secretive, unconstitutional, tyrannical killer of civilians.
Despite winning the Nobel Peace Prize, Obama was a President of death. For one, he had a secret “kill list”. To be on this list, means you are targeted to be murdered. Your friends no longer want to be with you, for fear that a drone may strike and incinerate everyone around you. Many people were not aware of this list, but there was at least one brave reporter, Benn Swann, who actually asked Obama about it. In addition to this list, he was the President of the Drone. There are numerous reports of death and destruction by drones overseas. A drone in Somalia killed 150 people and no one knew the identities of any of these people. How can we know if they deserved to die? They were instantly declared terrorists, with no evidence. U.S. drones have killed people in Syria, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen, Libya and Iraq. Even U.S. citizens have been killed by Obama drone strikes. The United Nations has said that these American drone strikes have actually killed more civilians in Yemen than al-Queda. The inner workings of this drone program was revealed by a whistleblower in a report called “The Drone Papers”. The goal of the strikes is to kill “militants”, but the definition of militant is “all military-age males in a strike zone”. As The New York Times said, the uncomfortable truth about drone strikes is that it is often not known who will die. The Intercept summed it up very well:
If you’re an American who has lived under the war on terror, it’s easy to forget how extreme this behavior is. Most countries on the planet don’t routinely run around dropping bombs and killing dozens of people in multiple other countries at once, let alone do so in countries where they’re not at war.
But for Americans, this is now all perfectly normalized. We just view our president as vested with the intrinsic, divine right, grounded in American exceptionalism, to deem whomever he wants “Bad Guys” and then — with no trial, no process, no accountability — order them killed. He’s the roving, Global Judge, Jury, and Executioner. And we see nothing disturbing or dangerous or even odd about that. We’ve been inculcated to view the world the way a 6-year-old watches cartoons: Bad Guys should be killed, and that’s the end of the story. (Source)
Even strikes carried out by jets instead of drones have killed many civilians. A U.S. airstrike bombed a hospital in Afghanistan, killing innocent staff, patients and children. Hundreds of civilians have been killed in Iraq and Syria in strikes on ISIS. Just one strike killed nearly 60 civilians in Syria who were “mistaken” for ISIS fighters. Although he promised to end the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, there was about 5,000 troops in Iraq and about 8,400 in Afghanistan near then end of his final term.
Not only was Obama pro-death, he was one of the least transparent Presidents ever. He denied a record 77 percent Freedom of Information Act requests. The Obama administration actually strongly opposed the passage of FOIA reform that would have modernized the law for the internet age.
Obama gave highest precedence to advancing the new international order, and thus was the New World Order President. He bypassed Congress and used the United Nations for passage of a nuclear deal with Iran (which of course benefited the Rockefellers). His National Security Strategy focused on “advancing the international order” by leading at the U.N., “modernizing” NATO, signing the horrible TPP and signing the TTIP. In getting the TPP signed, Obama had to ignore, and overlook mass graves in Malaysia due to human trafficking. Not only did he overlook the mass graves, he actually upgraded Malaysia on human rights, in order to keep negotiations over TPP intact.
Surveillance on citizens and violations of the fourth amendment were constant under Obama. So much so, that a federal judge said he was “extremely concerned” by NSA and FBI surveillance. The Pentagon deployed military spy drones over the U.S. Baltimore, Maryland implemented aerial surveillance over the city. FBI planes circled Tuscon, Arizona to spy on citizens. Hidden microphones were installed in San Francisco, California. There was even a rapid rise in federal surveillance drones over America. The U.S. Postal Service was found to have used surveillance extensively. Obama’s Department of Homeland Security and Justice Department have spent more than $95 million on secret cell phone tracking technologies, and own more than 400 cell-site simulators. Reuters recently reported: “Yahoo Inc.’s secret scanning of customer emails at the behest of a U.S. spy agency is part of a growing push by officials to loosen constitutional protections Americans have against arbitrary governmental searches, according to legal documents and people briefed on closed court hearings”. Why do officials under Obama want to loosen constitutional protections? How is that “liberal”? Even a New York skyscraper was turned into an NSA spy hub.
President Obama also was the President of Executive Power and executive orders. His executive reach extended beyond Earth, actually: he even signed an executive order dealing with space weather events. According to the New York Times, “Mr. Obama will leave the White House as one of the most prolific authors of major regulations in presidential history.” (Just a reminder, there are three branches of government in this country, and the Legislative, Congress, writes the laws. Not the President).
Secrecy, unconstitutional executive actions and drone strikes were the fruits of Obama’s presidency. The nostalgia for him can only be due to the short-term memory of U.S. citizens. This article will hopefully serve as a reminder to the type of President he truly was.