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Thu Feb 7, 2013, 10:39 AM

George Monbiot on Obama's hyprocrisy regarding his drone war...

In the US, mass child killings are tragedies. In Pakistan, mere bug splats

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/dec/17/us-killings-tragedies-pakistan-bug-splats


"Mere words cannot match the depths of your sorrow, nor can they heal your wounded hearts … These tragedies must end. And to end them, we must change." Every parent can connect with what President Barack Obama said about the murder of 20 children in Newtown, Connecticut. There can scarcely be a person on earth with access to the media who is untouched by the grief of the people of that town.

It must follow that what applies to the children murdered there by a deranged young man also applies to the children murdered in Pakistan by a sombre American president. These children are just as important, just as real, just as deserving of the world's concern. Yet there are no presidential speeches or presidential tears for them, no pictures on the front pages of the world's newspapers, no interviews with grieving relatives, no minute analysis of what happened and why.

If the victims of Mr Obama's drone strikes are mentioned by the state at all, they are discussed in terms which suggest that they are less than human. The people who operate the drones, Rolling Stone magazine reports, describe their casualties as "bug splats", "since viewing the body through a grainy-green video image gives the sense of an insect being crushed". Or they are reduced to vegetation: justifying the drone war, Obama's counterterrorism adviser Bruce Riedel explained that "you've got to mow the lawn all the time. The minute you stop mowing, the grass is going to grow back".




There are no words....

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Reply George Monbiot on Obama's hyprocrisy regarding his drone war... (Original post)
truth2power Feb 2013 OP
Kolesar Feb 2013 #1
truth2power Feb 2013 #3
woo me with science Feb 2013 #2
OnyxCollie Feb 2013 #4
bvar22 Feb 2013 #5

Response to truth2power (Original post)

Thu Feb 7, 2013, 10:55 AM

1. The "signature strike" doctrine

The "signature strike" doctrine developed under Obama, which has no discernible basis in law, merely looks for patterns. A pattern could consist of a party of unknown men carrying guns (which scarcely distinguishes them from the rest of the male population of north-west Pakistan), or a group of unknown people who look as if they might be plotting something. This is how wedding and funeral parties get wiped out; this is why 40 elders discussing royalties from a chromite mine were blown up in March last year. It is one of the reasons why children continue to be killed.


I thought that individuals were identified and targeted, not "patterns". I don't think George Monbiot is stating this correctly.

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Response to Kolesar (Reply #1)

Thu Feb 7, 2013, 11:15 AM

3. ....

http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/human_nature/2012/04/yemen_s_drone_war_is_mission_creep_drawing_us_into_a_civil_war_.html

Under the old rules, the CIA and JSOC could use the drones over Yemen only for “personality” strikes, in which the target was identified as someone on an approved list of bad guys. Nobody was deliberately killed until we knew who he was and until we investigated his role in al-Qaida.

Last year, the CIA and JSOC asked the White House to relax the rules. They wanted authority to launch “signature” strikes. In a signature strike, you don’t have to know exactly who the target is. You just have to watch his behavior—the Journal cites transporting weapons as an example—and determine that it’s the behavior of a bad guy. The signature rule allows you to target a lot more people. That’s why we’ve launched so many strikes in Pakistan.



Just one of many cites to 'signature strikes'.

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Response to truth2power (Original post)

Thu Feb 7, 2013, 01:13 PM

4. That's what those kids get for pallin' around with terrorists.

Ahh. Cognitive dissonance averted.

Lah dee dah, dee doo. Off to start a thread about how cute Michelle's bangs are now...

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Response to truth2power (Original post)

Thu Feb 7, 2013, 01:44 PM

5. DUrec.

Why is is so difficult for some to understand this?


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