In the document, the Justice Department concludes that a lethal strike against a senior operational leader of al Qaeda — or an affiliated terrorist group — can occur if a three-part test is met: that a high-level American intelligence official has determined the individual poses an imminent threat, that capture is infeasible, and that the strike is conducted according to the laws of war governing use of force.
“This conclusion is reached with recognition of the extraordinary seriousness of a lethal operation by the United States against a U.S. citizen, and also of the extraordinary seriousness of the threat posed by senior operational al Qaeda members and the loss of life that would result were their operations successful,” the memo reads.
The memo does not carry legal weight, although administration officials told the network the document is similar to classified guidance developed by the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel.
Deeper into the article it is noted that the memo provides justification for the killing of Anwar al-Awaki in 2011. You know….a couple years after the fact.
Wake up people.