The conflict between foreign policy and civil liberties presented by the use of unmanned Predator drones

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2010-12

Authors

Abrams, Jeremy Isadore

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Abstract

In this paper I will offer an overview the evolution of civil liberties in the United States. These liberties, I argue, were meant to protect individuals from unwarranted exercises of power from the government, but ultimately were not intended to hamper the government’s ability to carry out basic government functions, such as self defense. Next, I examine the parallel evolution of the ability of the executive to exercise broad ranging powers in pursuit of foreign policy, especially in regard to self defense. After that I argue that the current policy not necessarily represent the administration choosing self defense over an individual’s civil liberties. Rather, it represents the notion that at a fundamental level, a state will always choose to pursue foreign policies designed to protect itself, and that even the domestic legal institutions that have evolved in the United States recognize that fact.

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