In a letter to congressional leaders, Atty. Gen. Eric H. Holder Jr. said the administration had deliberately killed Anwar Awlaki, a radical Muslim cleric who was slain in September 2011 in Yemen, but had killed three other Americans inadvertently.
They include Samir Khan, an
"These individuals were not specifically targeted by the United States," Holder wrote.
The development raises the stakes for the policy speech Obama is scheduled to deliver Thursday at the National Defense University. He is facing growing public pressure to explain the use of drone missile strikes to kill suspected terrorists around the globe, and to outline his evolving strategy against a weakened Al Qaeda.
Obama, who personally approves individual
The fact that drones have killed four Americans and that only one, Awlaki, was specifically targeted suggests the process is not as precise as officials have suggested.