It's a topic that doesn't get brought up often enough, in my opinion. It probably won't be a major player in the foreign policy debate tonight either. Mostly because the men in power or the men aspiring to be in power don't want it to be discussed in a national debate. And that, of course, doesn't mean that it shouldn't be.
This hypothetical question brought up for President Obama by the author of the piece is a gem:
To President Obama: Your administration has not just employed targeted killing; it has made the case for targeted killing to the rest of the world. What would you tell the leader of another country who wants to make use not only of technology pioneered by America but also of legal arguments pioneered by America? Do those arguments only count for America, or do they count also for Russia, China, and well, North Korea and Hezbollah?
The question isn't if we have the technology or the ability to make such attacks, it is rather one of whether we have the right to do so or not? And what happens when our enemies develop the same technology of their own? We are the only nation to use nuclear weapons against another nation in wartime. And we have been lionized in other parts of the world for our current stance against developing nuclear programs in nations that don't see eye-to-eye with us on their use or the threat of their use. Will these drone attacks continue or even escalate? Or will they eventually go the way of the atomic bomb? A weapon of war that should be more of a threat than something that is used on a weekly or daily basis?
I don't have a good answer for any of those questions right now. But I'd sure be interested in hearing the President and Governor Romney's thoughts on their use. This Silent War, however, will most likely go unmentioned tonight. Which is exactly what each candidate would prefer. But it's something to think about as they hammer away at each other on the rest of the foreign policy topic.