John Yoo: A President Can Nuke the United States

I had the opportunity to ask war lawyer John Yoo a couple of questions on Friday.  The situation was not ideal, with someone else holding the microphone and deferring to the witness, and other people heckling, and other people shouting at the hecklers.  Nonetheless . . .

I gave Yoo every opportunity I could to place a limit on presidential power.  Can a president shoot missiles in the United States?  Can a president drop nukes in the United States?  Yoo refused to concede any limits.

Yoo used the example of shooting down one of the airplanes on 9-11 to assert that a president could indeed use drones to shoot missiles at suspected enemies within the United States, assuming of course that the president proclaims it to be “wartime.”

So, can a president drop nukes in the United States?  Yoo refused to deny a president even that power.  He chose to respond by focusing on the example of Hiroshima, arguing for Truman’s rightful power to do what he did, but my question had involved dropping nukes in the United States, and Yoo’s answer made clear that he acknowledged no limitation on that power.  Watch the video below.

David Swanson is co-founder of and author of the new book Daybreak: Undoing the Imperial Presidency and Forming a More Perfect Union by Seven Stories Press. You can order it and find out when tour will be in your town by visiting

Article Tools:  Print   Email

3 Responses for “John Yoo: A President Can Nuke the United States”

  1. Social comments and analytics for this post…

    This post was mentioned on Twitter by P2Blogs: Via @thePublicRecord John Yoo: A President Can Nuke the United States: I had the opportunity to … #p2 #du1 #njp #p2b…

  2. Judy Walsh says:

    Why oh why is this lunatic (yoo) walking around free? He should be committed.

  3. Henrietta Wilson says:

    Anyone who has a missile can nuke anyplace on the planet.
    What is going to stop anyone from doing that?
    John Yoo refused to speculate about the possibility of any President ordering the use of nukes on our own people.
    Why would anybody even ask such a question?
    The only way the people can limit any President from becoming so powerful that he/she could order the use of nukes on our people, is to insist on the observance of only the powers that the Constitution grants to the legislative branch of governement. Allowing the government to become so powerful that it can dictate what the people MUST buy and even back up that Mandate with punishing fines is one step towards the creation of a government so powerful that a President would have the power to use nukes on our own people.

    Beware any government that becomes so powerful that it can force people to obey orders!

Leave a Reply

Article Tools:  Print   Email
Copyright © 2008 The Public Record. All rights reserved. Branding services provided by Quantcast