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The Northerner Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-22-11 09:12 PM
Original message
Reasons to fear drone killings
The next president of the United States needs to answer this question: When, and under what conditions, will the US Government stop using drones to bomb suspected terrorists around the world?

The drone program - assuming the media and thinktank coverage of it is basically true, and this piece should not be construed as confirming the existence of the program - is a tactical and technological innovation that has been invaluable in the war against al-Qaeda. Cost-effective, increasingly precise and surgical, it is almost the archetype of sterile, risk-free, push-button warfare, which the US military has dreamed of for a generation.

But bombing by drone is also an act of war that kills people. And wars are supposed to end. Endless war is unacceptable and dangerous. The US Government simply cannot arrogate the right to wage an endless, global war against anyone it deems a threat to national security. The prospect of such a war should trouble anyone who has the least acquaintance with history or political philosophy.After US citizen Anwar al-Awlaki was killed in a September drone attack, the American Civil Liberties Union deputy legal director rightly said, ''It is a mistake to invest the President - any president - with the unreviewable power to kill any American whom he deems to present a threat to the country.''

The point is simple: That power will corrupt those who would wield it. I do not believe president George W. Bush misused this power or that President Barack Obama has misused it so far. It is clear that drones need to be in the skies for some years yet. But that does not mean we should automatically extend the same trust to every future president.

Read more: http://www.canberratimes.com.au/news/opinion/editorial/general/reasons-to-fear-drone-killings/2365895.aspx
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Philosopher King Donating Member (269 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-22-11 09:26 PM
Response to Original message
1. "But bombing by drone is also an act of war..."
Well, that is in fact, the bottom line...it is war.

Thus, the question posed: (When, and under what conditions, will the US Government stop using drones to bomb suspected terrorists around the world?) must be re-directed in accordance with:

Article I - The Legislative Branch

Section 8 - Powers of Congress

Clause 11 - To declare War, grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal, and make Rules concerning Captures on Land and Water;

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msongs Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-22-11 09:32 PM
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2. soon to be used on us since leadership is getting away with it in non-enemy foreign countries nt
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sad sally Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-22-11 10:51 PM
Response to Reply #2
4. The US has unleashed a method of non-declared war that will have
consequences. The illegality, and especially the immorality, of these consequences may be why the President is setting up military operations in Australia - if the US can target and kill wherever it deems necessary, so can China and Iran.
#####

Forget about China's first aircraft carrier, the U.S. military has a whole new reason to be scared.

At the world's largest robotics show in Washington this week, China debuted the F50 a small drone the size of a pizza pan that comes equipped with a high-def camera.

Now, lots of countries have drones, or Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs). The U.S. has drones, Israel, Brazil and Iran.
----
Military analysts have suggested that China is focused on capabilities that could threaten U.S. military vessels in a confrontation over Taiwan. The most recent Defense Department report to Congress on China's military capabilities notes Beijing's push to develop longer-range unmanned aircraft, including armed drones, "expands China's options for long-range reconnaissance and strike."

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatches/globalpost-blogs/the-rice-bowl/china-military-technology-drones-UAVs-unmanned-ae?du
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xchrom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Nov-22-11 09:35 PM
Response to Original message
3. Recommend
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chill_wind Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-23-11 01:32 AM
Response to Original message
5. "Simply put, when is this war over?"


The answer cannot be ''once we've killed them all,'' because we will never know whether or when that has been achieved. Using the killing of every active or potential member of al-Qaeda as the metric for victory is simply a recipe for extending the war for as long as the government deems convenient. Nor is the metric ''after al-Qaeda surrenders'' useful, because there will be no surrender ceremony.

The answer is likely to be murky: when US intelligence no longer judges al-Qaeda to be a clear and present danger. The Government should clarify what that looks like and, to the extent possible, define that goal with as many concrete and measurable benchmarks as possible so that there is objectivity and accountability in its assessment. Without such metrics, we are simply trusting that the Government will make the right decision and relinquish its war powers of its own accord, by its own judgment, when it deems the time right.

I don't know the exact answer. But I also don't get the sense that the Obama administration is even asking the question, and that is most worrisome of all.





"The writer served as a National Security Council director for Afghanistan from 2007 to 2009."

K & R
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Rex Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Nov-23-11 02:23 AM
Response to Original message
6. I find it ironic that when one of these drone hunter-killer planes
blows up or butchers children innocent and far from their target...is that considered to be terrifying enough to be on the same level as terrorism? I find the idea of being butchered by an unmanned plane to be pretty terrifying. What about children? How do they relate?
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