OBAMA LOVES TO BOMB OSAMA
The drone's airstrikes have proved popular under the Obama administration.
In less than two years, Barack Obama has authorized at least 122 of them,
more than double the number authorized by his predecessor, George W. Bush,
during his entire eight years in office.
Drone strategy comes with much baggage
by Michael HIggins, National Post, Oct 2, 2010
On Thursday, the shops, markets and bazaars in North Waziristan’s four main towns were shut to protest the unprecedented levels of drone attacks in the area — 20, the most in any month since the War on Terror began. “Americans are killing innocent civilians but the [Pakistan] government has completely failed to protect us,” said Malik Jalal, a tribal elder and one of the protest’s organizers. “They are attacking civilians, they are killing women, children and old-age people.”
But the problem for NATO is that areas such as North Waziristan — part of Pakistan’s Federally Administered Tribal Areas and described as the most dangerous place on Earth — are terrorist strongholds, bastions of al-Qaeda, the Taliban and the Haqqani network, one of the strongest U.S. foes in Afghanistan. The Pakistani military avoids the area, saying it wants to consolidate its gains elsewhere. The only option for NATO as it targets terrorists amid the remote mountains, valleys and thick forests, is the airborne drone attacks.
But the strategy brings much baggage: claims of abuse of Pakistan sovereignty, collateral damage with the killing of innocent civilians, and even questions about the legality of such strikes. This week, Leon Panetta, head of the Central Intelligence Agency, told Asif Ali Zardari, Pakistan’s President, and Yousuf Raza Gilani, the Prime Minister, the United States planned to increase drone attacks in the tribal areas. The government in Islamabad appears unwilling to stop the drone attacks, but is facing increasing internal pressure to do something.
That pressure increased this week after NATO helicopters crossed into Pakistani airspace twice in pursuit of terrorists. One incursion resulted in an exchange of gunfire leading to the deaths of three Pakistani soldiers. Shyema Sajjad, deputy editor at Dawn.com, a Pakistani news website, said the country’s sovereignty was becoming a joke. “On one hand, we are receiving so much funding and aid [from America] and on the other hand, our sovereignty is being ridiculed by daily drone strikes and now the chopper violations,” he wrote. “The government may publicly condemn the drone strikes to pacify the masses, but it does not realize that this is not an oblivious nation. If drone strikes are to continue in Pakistan, then instead of further discrediting itself and mocking the intelligence of the nation, the government should boldly say so.” Khurshid Ahmed, a lawmaker with the hardline Jamaat-i-Islami party, called the attacks “a sheer violation of international norms and direct attack on our sovereignty.” Added Maulana Mohammad Deendar, a former lawmaker with the pro-Taliban JUI-F party, “The government should take immediate steps to stop drone attacks; otherwise it should resign.”
In the meeting with the CIA chief, Mr. Gilani said Pakistanis were becoming increasingly angry over the attacks. “Pakistan being a front-line ally in the war against terror expects its partners to respect its territorial sovereignty,” he said. People are also shocked by the civilian casualties. Faisal Shahzad, the accused Times Square bomber, said it was the drone strikes that prompted him to attack the United States. Pakistani media reports often quote the statistic that 140 innocent civilians die for every al-Qaeda and Taliban terrorist killed. However, verifying facts and statistics is difficult when dealing with drone strikes in the remote tribal areas.
The New America Foundation, a think-tank whose compilation of drone strikes from media reports led to the graphic display on the photo above, estimates the civilian casualty rate has been dropping from about 30% several years ago to about 10% now. But it is the death of civilians that raises the question of the attacks’ legality. For lawyers the issue is the “principle of proportionality.” This prohibits attacks that may be expected to cause “incidental loss of civilian life”. But Harold Koh, the U.S. State Department’s legal advisor, rejects such arguments and claims the U.S. is “committed to ensuring that the targeting practices [drone strikes] are lawful.” Still, the American Civil Liberties Union and the Center for Constitutional Rights launched a lawsuit against the U.S. government in August, claiming targeted killings with drones amounted to extrajudicial execution. The Obama administration is seeking to have the case dismissed.
The airstrikes have proved popular under the Obama administration. In less than two years, Barack Obama has authorized at least 122 of them, more than double the number authorized by his predecessor, George W. Bush, during his entire eight years in office. The airborne attacks have also been effective in taking out several top terror leaders, including Baitullah Mehsud of the Taliban umbrella group Tehrik-i-Taliban. This week Sheik Fateh, al-Qaeda’s operational chief for Afghanistan and Pakistan, was killed in a drone attack. And, as was shown last month, the frequency of the drone strikes increases in proportion to the danger. In the past few weeks, intelligence services around the world became increasingly concerned that terrorists operating in Pakistan were planning Mumbai-style attacks on Britain, France and Germany, possibly with the personal approval of Osama bin Laden. Those fears almost certainly provoked the surge in drone use in September as NATO sought to disrupt the terrorist operation. The effectiveness of the strikes, coupled with the rejection of legal complaints, the dismissal of political sovereignty concerns, and acceptance of a certain level of collateral damage, means that for NATO the drone will remain the missile of choice in the tribal areas.
Drone strategy comes with much baggage, National Post, Oct 2, 2010
FLYING IN LIBYA NO-FLY ZONE
Deskbound warriors in Nevada deliver death (bombing Afghan/Pak/Iraq like video game) & Deadly CIA robots in the sky (victims are Muslims not terrorists). GlobeMail, Oct 2, 2010
UK alerts tourists to fear attack by Osama (solders/sniffer dogs patrol streets) & USA warns of possible terrorist attacks in Europe (subways/trains/airplanes targeted by Al Qaeda). DailyMail/Reuters, Oct 3, 2010
OBAMA UN-NOBLE PEACE PRIZE
HAIL TO THE CHIMP
OBAMA ABORTING & BOMBING
Obama The Warmonger - 17 Bombed In Pakistan (not a hate crime like Harry saying "Paki"). You Tube, CNN, Jan 23, 2009
Prince Harry's racist term sparks anger (says "ahh, our little Paki friend, Ahmed"). BBC, Jan 16, 2009
Obama orders air strikes on Pakistan villages in tribal area. Guardian, Jan 24, 2009
Barack Obama gave the go-ahead for his first military action yesterday, missile strikes against suspected militants in Pakistan which killed at least 18 people. Four days after assuming the presidency, he was consulted by US commanders before they launched the two attacks....Obama has warned that he is prepared to bomb inside Pakistan if he gets relevant intelligence about the whereabouts of Osama bin Laden. He had also said he would act against militants along the border if the Pakistan government failed to. The US missiles were fired by unmanned Predator drones, which hang in the sky gathering intelligence through surveillance and, when commanded and directed by remote control, to launch attacks. The strikes will help Obama portray himself as a leader who, though ready to shift the balance of American power towards diplomacy, is not afraid of military action....
Oh-Bomb-Ah Launches First Attack on Pakistan. NolanChart, Jan 24, 2009 (Barack Obama bloodied his hands for the first time as America's Commander-in-Chief, ordering the destruction of several homes in a small village in Pakistan. At least 18 were killed and two homes destroyed by unmanned Predator drones)
DOUBLETHINK BLACKWHITE RACISM
OBAMA PAL TRASHES CAMELOT
ORWELLIAN EMANUEL IN WHITE HOUSE
OBAMA HEADING US INTO ABYSS
IRAQ AFGHANI PHONY WARS & WHO YOU GONNA BLAME? OSAMA! & WHERE IS OSADDAM BIN? & AFGHANISTAN REMEMBERED
BIG BROTHER STAGED EVENTS & TERROR BILL IS TERROR
28.Reality Control (bombs fired by gov't to keep people frightened)
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