WASHINGTON – Robert Gibbs, the former White House press secretary under President Obama said that he was instructed to deny the administration’s use of targeted drone strikes against what they considered to be suspected terrorists.
Are there other existing programs in which government officials have been instructed to deny? Most likely.
Speaking to MSNBC on Sunday, Gibbs said:
When I went through the process of becoming press secretary, one of the first things they told me was you’re not even to acknowledge the drone program. You’re not even to discuss that it exists.
Coming from an administration that campaigned on the promise of being the most transparent in American history, the drone program, established by John Brennan, Obama’s current pick to lead the CIA, was something the administration was very vigorous about keeping under wraps. That was until the information was leaked.
Now it seems that President Obama’s own former press secretary is calling out his administration for their absurdity when it comes to transparency. Gibbs went on to say,
Here’s what’s inherently crazy about that proposition. You’re being asked a question based on reporting of a program that exists. So you’re the official government spokesperson acting as if the entire program – pay no attention to the man behind the curtain.
So far, the Obama administration has refused to release legal memos that justify using drones against suspected terrorists. One of these strikes killed Anwar al-Aulaqi, an American citizen born in Denver, Colo. who was not granted a trial.
President Obama has no plans to show Congress the legal rulings that supposedly justify the use of drones to murder American citizens, despite urging from members of his party to reveal the information. The administration’s “kill-list” remains a secret.