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Fri Jan 18, 2013, 11:11 AM

 

Living Under Drones: Death, Injury, and Trauma to Civilians from U.S. Drone Practices in Pakistan

Living Under Drones: Death, Injury, and Trauma to Civilians from U.S. Drone Practices in Pakistan




Executive Summary and Recommendations


In the United States, the dominant narrative about the use of drones in Pakistan is of a surgically precise and effective tool that makes the US safer by enabling “targeted killing” of terrorists, with minimal downsides or collateral impacts.

This narrative is false.

...

First, while civilian casualties are rarely acknowledged by the US government, there is significant evidence that US drone strikes have injured and killed civilians. In public statements, the US states that there have been “no” or “single digit” civilian casualties.” It is difficult to obtain data on strike casualties because of US efforts to shield the drone program from democratic accountability, compounded by the obstacles to independent investigation of strikes in North Waziristan. The best currently available public aggregate data on drone strikes are provided by The Bureau of Investigative Journalism (TBIJ), an independent journalist organization. TBIJ reports that from June 2004 through mid-September 2012, available data indicate that drone strikes killed 2,562-3,325 people in Pakistan, of whom 474-881 were civilians, including 176 children. TBIJ reports that these strikes also injured an additional 1,228-1,362 individuals. Where media accounts do report civilian casualties, rarely is any information provided about the victims or the communities they leave behind. This report includes the harrowing narratives of many survivors, witnesses, and family members who provided evidence of civilian injuries and deaths in drone strikes to our research team. It also presents detailed accounts of three separate strikes, for which there is evidence of civilian deaths and injuries, including a March 2011 strike on a meeting of tribal elders that killed some 40 individuals.

Second, US drone strike policies cause considerable and under-accounted-for harm to the daily lives of ordinary civilians, beyond death and physical injury. Drones hover twenty-four hours a day over communities in northwest Pakistan, striking homes, vehicles, and public spaces without warning. Their presence terrorizes men, women, and children, giving rise to anxiety and psychological trauma among civilian communities. Those living under drones have to face the constant worry that a deadly strike may be fired at any moment, and the knowledge that they are powerless to protect themselves. These fears have affected behavior. The US practice of striking one area multiple times, and evidence that it has killed rescuers, makes both community members and humanitarian workers afraid or unwilling to assist injured victims. Some community members shy away from gathering in groups, including important tribal dispute-resolution bodies, out of fear that they may attract the attention of drone operators. Some parents choose to keep their children home, and children injured or traumatized by strikes have dropped out of school. Waziris told our researchers that the strikes have undermined cultural and religious practices related to burial, and made family members afraid to attend funerals. In addition, families who lost loved ones or their homes in drone strikes now struggle to support themselves.

...

President Obama’s Escalation of the Drone Program

When President Bush left office in January 2009, the US had carried out at least 45 drone strikes according to the New America Foundation, or 52 according to The Bureau of Investigative Journalism (TBIJ), inside Pakistan. Since then, President Obama has reportedly carried out more than five times that number: 292 strikes in just over three and a half years. This dramatic escalation in the US use of drones to carry out targeted killings has brought with it escalating tensions between the US and Pakistan, as well as continued questions about the efficacy and accuracy of such strikes.

...

http://livingunderdrones.org/report/

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Reply Living Under Drones: Death, Injury, and Trauma to Civilians from U.S. Drone Practices in Pakistan (Original post)
JReed Jan 2013 OP
SidDithers Jan 2013 #1
leftstreet Jan 2013 #2
OKNancy Jan 2013 #3
SidDithers Jan 2013 #4
Comrade_McKenzie Jan 2013 #6
bighart Jan 2013 #5
LineNew Reply ^
green for victory Jan 2013 #7

Response to JReed (Original post)

Fri Jan 18, 2013, 11:25 AM

1. Great post, OG...



Sid

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Response to JReed (Original post)

Fri Jan 18, 2013, 11:30 AM

2. DURec

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Response to OKNancy (Reply #3)

Fri Jan 18, 2013, 02:17 PM

4. Thank you, EarlG!...



Sid

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Response to OKNancy (Reply #3)

Fri Jan 18, 2013, 02:42 PM

6. Orvwa (I know), troll. nt

 

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Response to JReed (Original post)

Fri Jan 18, 2013, 02:41 PM

5. One of my issues

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Response to JReed (Original post)

Fri Jan 18, 2013, 02:50 PM

7. ^

 



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