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Medea Benjamin
NationofChange / Op-Ed
Published: Thursday 31 May 2012
“Even the New York Times article acknowledges that Pakistan and Yemen are less stable and more hostile to the United States since Mr. Obama became president, that drones have become a provocative symbol of American power running roughshod over national sovereignty and killing innocents.”

Obama and Drone Warfare: Will Americans Speak Out?

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On May 29, The New York Times published an extraordinarily in-depth look at the intimate role President Obama has played in authorizing US drone attacks overseas, particularly in Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia. It is chilling to read the cold, macabre ease with which the President and his staff decide who will live or die. The fate of people living thousands of miles away is decided by a group of Americans, elected and unelected, who don’t speak their language, don’t know their culture, don’t understand their motives or values. While purporting to represent the world’s greatest democracy, US leaders are putting people on a hit list who are as young as 17, people who are given no chance to surrender, and certainly no chance to be tried in a court of law.

Who is furnishing the President and his aides with this list of terrorist suspects to choose from, like baseball cards? The kind of intelligence used to put people on drone hit lists is the same kind of intelligence that put people in Guantanamo. Remember how the American public was assured that the prisoners locked up in Guantanamo were the “worst of the worst,” only to find out that hundreds were innocent people who had been sold to the US military by bounty hunters?

Why should the public believe what the Obama administration says about the people being assassinated by drones? Especially since, as we learn in the New York Times, the administration came up with a semantic solution to keep the civilian death toll to a minimum: simply count all military-age males in a strike zone as combatants. The rationale, reminiscent of George Zimmerman’s justification for shooting Trayvon Martin, is that “people in an area of known terrorist activity, or found with a top Qaeda operative, are probably up to no good.” Talk about profiling! At least when George Bush threw suspected militants into Guantanamo their lives were spared.

Referring to the killing of Anwar al-Awlaki, the article reveals that for Obama, even ordering an American citizen to be assassinated by drone was “easy.” Not so easy was twisting the Constitution to assert that while the Fifth Amendment’s guarantees American citizens due process, this can simply consist of “internal deliberations in the executive branch.” No need for the irksome interference of checks and balances.

Al-Awlaki might have been guilty of defecting to the enemy, but the Constitution requires that even traitors be convicted on the “testimony of two witnesses” or a “confession in open court,” not the say-so of the executive branch.

In addition to hit lists, Obama has granted the CIA the authority to kill with even greater ease using "signature strikes," i.e. strikes based solely on suspicious behavior. The article reports State Department officials complained that the CIA’s criteria for identifying a terrorist “signature” were too lax. “The joke was that when the C.I.A. sees ‘three guys doing jumping jacks,’ the agency thinks it is a terrorist training camp, said one senior official. Men loading a truck with fertilizer could be bomb makers — but they might also be farmers, skeptics argued.”

Obama’s top legal adviser Harold Koh insists that this killing spree is legal under international law because the US has the inherent right to self-defense. It’s true that all nations possess the right to defend themselves, but the defense must be against an imminent attack that is overwhelming and leaves no moment of deliberation. When a nation is not in an armed conflict, the rules are even stricter. The killing must be necessary to protect life and there must be no other means, such as capture or nonlethal incapacitation, to prevent that threat to life. Outside of an active war zone, then, it is illegal to use weaponized drones, which are weapons of war incapable of taking a suspect alive.

Just think of the precedent the US is setting with its kill-don’t-capture doctrine. Were the US rationale to be applied by other countries, China might declare an ethnic Uighur activist living in New York City as an “enemy combatant” and send a missile into Manhattan; Russia could assert that it was legal to launch a drone attack against someone living in London whom they claim is linked to Chechen militants. Or consider the case of Luis Posada Carrilles, a Cuban-American living in Miami who is a known terrorist convicted of masterminding a 1976 bombing of a Cuban airliner that killed 73 people. Given the failure of the US legal system to bring Posada to justice, the Cuban government could claim that it has the right to send a drone into downtown Miami to kill an admitted terrorist and sworn enemy.

Dennis Blair, former director of national intelligence, called the drone strike campaign “dangerously seductive” because it was low cost, entailed no casualties and gives the appearance of toughness. “It plays well domestically,” he said, “and it is unpopular only in other countries. Any damage it does to the national interest only shows up over the long term.”

But an article in the Washington Post the following day, May 30, entitled “Drone strikes spur backlash in Yemen,” shows that the damage is not just long term but immediate. After interviewing more than 20 tribal leaders, victims’ relatives, human rights activists and officials from southern Yemen, journalist Sudarsan Raghavan concluded that the escalating U.S. strikes are radicalizing the local population and stirring increasing sympathy for al-Qaeda-linked militants. “The drones are killing al-Qaeda leaders,” said legal coordinator of a local human rights group Mohammed al-Ahmadi, “but they are also turning them into heroes.”

Even the New York Times article acknowledges that Pakistan and Yemen are less stable and more hostile to the United States since Mr. Obama became president, that drones have become a provocative symbol of American power running roughshod over national sovereignty and killing innocents.

One frightening aspect of the Times piece is what it says about the American public. After all, this is an election-time piece about Obama’s leadership style, told from the point of view of mostly Obama insiders bragging about how the president is no shrinking violent when it comes to killing.  Implicit is the notion that Americans like tough leaders who don’t agonize over civilian deaths—over there, of course. 

Shahzad Akbar, a Pakistani lawyer suing the CIA on behalf of drone victims, thinks it’s time for the American people to speak out. “Can you trust a program that has existed for eight years, picks its targets in secret, faces zero accountability and has killed almost 3,000 people in Pakistan alone whose identities are not known to their killers?,” he asks. “When women and children in Waziristan are killed with Hellfire missiles, Pakistanis believe this is what the American people want. I would like to ask Americans, ‘Do you?’”



Author pic
ABOUT Medea Benjamin

Medea Benjamin is an American political activist, best known for co-founding Code Pink and, along with her husband, activist and author Kevin Danaherfair trade advocacy group Global Exchange. Benjamin also was a Green Party candidate in 2000 for the United States Senate.

Columbus was one of the first

Columbus was one of the first to take gold from people and the people as slaves. Now we kill the people and take all their resources, including gold. http://therealnews.com/t2/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=31&I...

http://treegrower.org/about/Rocky/Recent%20News%20about%20Rockky.html

OK, there is a darn good

OK, there is a darn good point lurking among all the pseudo-legal BS: if a military means is not working, time to give up or try something else. The proposition that drone strikes aren't working is NOT proven though... But, puh-lease, if a U.S. citizen goes over to an enemy combatant force he is NOT eligible for due process in a court of law - he can quite properly be shot down, with a rifle, an artillery shell, or a drone-borne missile. Note that he has no opportunity to surrender in each of these cases. And since Napoleonic times, snipers have preferentially shot officers - without knowing their exact names, yes indeed. That's why since Vietnam, U.S. officers carry rifles and wear only subdued rank insignia so as to blend in with their troops. And 17-year-olds can be quite dangerous - I'm not offended that we don't scoop them up and take them to a home for wayward boys. I am glad that President Obama does not delegate this very important function of command; it guarantees that there is some rigor to the decision to target someone in this way; even if it's NOT like in U.S. courts of law (which have a distressing propensity for putting innocents on death row, by the way). There's not much hope for our civilization (with all its faults) if the metropolitan power does not respond ferociously to something like 9/11. That the Pakistanis, whose bona fides is highly dubious, do not like drones - may actually be recommendation... If North Waziristan is not a war zone, where on earth is?

Do unto others as you would

Do unto others as you would have them do unto you .
An eye for an eye , a tooth for a tooth .
Who are the real TERRORISTS ?
What country in the world arrests " suspected " terrorists and imprisons them for endless years without proof or trial ?
What country in the world approves of and tortures " suspected " terrorists ?
What country in the world sprays food crops with a Cancer causing poison called Agent Orange in order to starve impoverished innocent civilians ? ..........but does not spray Poppy fields in Afghanistan whose crop is converted into Heroin which is then shipped to Europe and the United States ?
What country in the world uses depleted uranium [ a cancer causing agent ] in their bombs and ammunition ? [ poisons the air and ground for hundreds of years ]
What country after winning the 1 st half of the war [ 1991 ] sets up an embargo for the next 7 or 8 years and not allow food , medicine , medical equipment , spare parts for power plants, sewerage plants, water treatment plants , etc.? Because of the embargo according to Lancet , the British Medical Journal over 500,000 Iraqi children died .
What country in the world that possesses the most powerful WEAPONS of MASS DESTRUCTION uses them against small 3 rd world countries non stop since 1950 ?
This country has directly or indirectly threatened , intimidated , bombed cities and villages murdering innocent men , women and children , invaded and destroyed what little these poor people had . Some of these 3 rd world countries were Korea , Vietnam , Cambodia , Laos , Nicaragua, Chile , Cuba , Grenada , Guatemala , Haiti 2 X , Iran , Iraq 2 X , Zaire , Somalia , Yugoslavia , Philippines , Lebanon , Afghanistan , South Africa , Palestine , Panama , Dominican Republic , Libya ,etc. If we are allowed to send deadly drones into assorted sovereign nations to assassinate " suspected " Terrorists , I would then say other nations would also have the right to send drones into Washington , D.C. to assassinate the war mongers such as Cheny , Rumsfeld , Liebermann, ad nauseum.
An eye for an eye , a tooth for a tooth .
What country in the world has troops stationed in over 130 countries around the world. Sounds like Russia or China ? But NO , they mind their own business . It obviously is Amerika , land of the free , home of the brave wishing to spread our version of " Democracy " to countries around the world . They should be thankful , look at the blessings that we bestowed upon Iraq . They now have a democratically elected corrupt dictator who is our puppet .
Welcome to the New World Order .

I can imagine nothing more

I can imagine nothing more frightening than drones, and I am not a fearful person. It seems the heighth of lunacy, insensitivity to humanity, and disconnected thinking to support a program producing and employing these weapons. I am dismayed with Obama's military thinking.

Cowards love drone warfare.

Cowards love drone warfare. Can be done from your desk in Washington.

There is not much difference

There is not much difference between using a drone to kill from a distance and bombing them from an airplane or shooting them from a mile off . It is detached murder. Drones are cheaper because they don't involve the expense (many millions of dollars) of training pilots and putting 70-million dollar machines at risk, what little there is.
The problem is not drones. The problem is this new murder regime promoted by a president who knows and ignores the constitution, and brags about the killing.

What's far more disturbing is

What's far more disturbing is that Obama's campaign managers think that this is a winning election strategy to get him four more years. It's becoming quite clear that our insulation from any real defensive military activities on this continent over the last 200 years has produced an arrogant population that thinks we are impregnable to any attacking force, too many Chuck Norris and Sylvester Stallone movies. That war 200 years ago was with the British who came over here and burned Washington to the ground. Now the British are our best buddies and haven't needed a real military for years as U.S. Taxpayers have been paying for their military defense since 1947 when NATO was justified to fight the so-called Communist Scourge. The main reason the Brits, and various other European countries, have had the financial resources to provide their people with outstanding social programs that Americans can only dream about. We can't really say anything to the Brits now because they are, and have been, the majority owners in this country for years. Who do you think owns the largest Wall Street firms ? Explains why the last two administrations and the Congress have been falling all over themselves to shower those firms with bailouts paid for with Taxpayer Dollars and not one of those firm's managers has gone to jail ! We are too deep in this hole to do much about it and neither of the candidates that make it on the ballot for next November’s election hold the key. Occupy has turned out to be just one more feel good exercise holding endless strategy meetings that accomplish nothing except to fool the sheep into thinking that they are actually doing something. The corrupt political parties are already at it ripping up voter rows in various states disqualifying legitimate voters who are considered too Conservative or too Liberal. The Supreme Court has guaranteed that your vote is a waste of time by allowing financial interests to spend endless amounts of money to elect their chosen leaders, and that won’t be too difficult because less than 50% of the population even thinks it’s worth their time and that’s a long running trend. Even the Daughters of the American Revolution gave up their long time effort to hold meaningful bipartisan candidate debates that have been replaced by privately financed presentations that are limited to the two acceptable candidates who are thrown softball questions by a representative of what now passes for a free press. What’s it going to take to convince you this experiment in Democracy has long been co-opted by the moneyed interests ? The easy options have all been spent with no real change, any real effort toward change in the future will most likely lead to an authoritarian state because the American public are convinced that there is no real alternative because they don't have the guts to save this country if a violent response is warranted: Game Over !

Since when have the American

Since when have the American people had a say about what happens in war. It sickens me that on this past Memorial Day the usual programs and memorials dedicated to those lost in past wars never speak about ending the madness once and for all. It speaks about the loss and we see relatives of those men and women who will suffer those losses until the day they leave this world. Too many wars that should never have happened. It's all about profit and loss. The fat cats continue to profit and the American people suffer the loss of family. Why do we continue in this vein?

We are slow to act

We are slow to act intellectually, particularly when we're politically ignorant and uninterested. We are slow to act physically because of an apparent high tolerance for pain and just enough modern conveniences to keep us thinking we're doing ok. Conclusion: insufficient quotient of intellectual content connected with physical pain.

Plutocrats must comprehend this, yet don't they worry with the ever increasing number of poor and those dispossessed by "market forces"? Yes, they worry; that's the reason we're moving steadily into a police state. It's occurring so fast. Unbelievably fast.

Many commenting have

Many commenting have mentioned what I will refer to as "manufacturing consent" - Walter Lippman. We need to greive for those who have been murdered on all sides, but above all - stop the madness. But here comes my real comment, that is, we live in the illusion of a democracy. Polls show that a majority means nothing to the real masters of our fate. Stopping 'the madness' will take courage and the R word. If I write that word a security agency will pick it up and place a note in my file. lol - I am probably under surveillance for commenting here. When the people wake up their first task will be R.

R = r_vol_tion.

The sheep lack the guts to go

The sheep lack the guts to go that far, slavery is much easier to accept when you've never been a slave !

[sigh] I wasn't looking

[sigh] I wasn't looking forward to typing all the things I wanted to say about this topic...

Fortunately for all of us, makaainana, sageman69 & mrcoto pretty much covered it. Thanks.

We have all been betrayed. A

We have all been betrayed. A lover, friend, a coworker, you live long enough, for one reason or another, you get betrayed. That's just the way it goes. It's one of life's ugly little lessons.

Most of us move on, and hopefully learn without becoming bitter. My point being, why are so many people willing to believe people that have rarely earned our trust? Our politicians, and the string-pullers behind them.

Before the Internet you had to be part of the deception to truly understand the depths it reached. Now thanks to the Internet only your own denial stands in the way of you and the truth.

Not only have many of our politicians betrayed us, what they have done goes way beyond mere treason. They've willing sold us out, and have done so for so long, that they now don't even see any reason to hide their sense of privileged. "Conflict of interest," means nothing to these cretins.

Wars are sold to us using the same old wrapping they sell all the wars. Herman Goering said as much during the Nuremberg Trials; "Naturally the common people don't want war: Neither in Russia, nor in England, nor for that matter in Germany. That is understood. But, after all, IT IS THE LEADERS of the country who determine the policy and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is TELL THEM THEY ARE BEING ATTACKED, and denounce the peacemakers for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. IT WORKS THE SAME IN ANY COUNTRY."

It hasn't changed. Only it's not Nazi Germany, it's now America that is waging war.

Yes, but consider that

Yes, but consider that Vietnam caused a paradigm shift as to how a war gets produced and sold. One (of many) provocative lessons from Vietnam: Don't try to sell a war to middle class white boys/men. They won't go. Today, (I believe) perhaps 1% of American families are involved in the military and therefore in the prosecution of our wars. The other 99% remain relatively undisturbed by Granada, Iraq, Afghanistan... Sort of an odd reversal of those currently famous number combinations. So, when (if ever) do poor young men decide war is not the answer to their future? Complicated given the success of the war and violence themed video game culture, block buster motion pictures, confrontational "political discussion" shows, etc. We are in the American imperium. To think about how that will change isn't pretty. Yet some day it must and it shall and many, tragically will suffer.

MrCOTO, Another thumbs up for

MrCOTO,

Another thumbs up for a brilliant observation.

The mass killing of men,

The mass killing of men, women and children was not and is not being done by Obama or the American military. Do the Pakistanis believe it is OK for al Qaida to do these things? The Pakistanis have as little control over their terrorists and military as the average American has over President Obama and the US military.

Armed drones are starting to be available in the US, and I imagine will soon be available to al Qaida, so let the Drone Wars begin!

Al Qaede to doing what

Al Qaede to doing what things? I don't see them flying crones over our country indiscriminately blowing people to pieces.

The nation-state, whether

The nation-state, whether here or elsewhere, is defunct in the ecological model of an octogenarian planet. The Old Guard has usurped the means of evolution, mainly in the electronic landscape (i.e. from WWII forward), to create a protection racket for the cells that SWAT is supposed to take out. Parallel processing is what electronics does better than anything, something a smart second grade student could program for the world. Know who Indira Singh is, William Binney, and James Bamford, for Bluffdale, Utah is not less than an atomic explosion, and the initial tests have been completed on people like Assange, Manning, myself (for what that is worth...), and many more to come. The evolution of the study of music is the advancement of convergent math, like that of Ralph Abraham's models, but perhaps, the real model more to the point is that of Gar Alperovitz, the economic historian.

There are technologies that

There are technologies that can save the situation rather than explode it with drones or bombs. CryoRain Inc. provides one that will allow separation of persons preserving lives of innocents while capturing alive the targetted individuals while leaving the property undamaged and even the meals prepared ready for consumption needing only a little reheating. Up to now, the military has ignored these new, clean, cool methods favoring the heavily invested in program for drones. We can apply drones to our services as dissipating tornados before they mature and destroy and for airdrops in wildfire control and handling major fires. Perhaps we can make a swap - our handling of innocents in attacking for drones handling our need for air access to fires and crises. Then both the drone business and ours will thrive exceedingly well and people here and abroad will celebrate!!!!

It's going to be the next

It's going to be the next video game rage.

“When women and children in

“When women and children in Waziristan are killed with Hellfire missiles, Pakistanis believe this is what the American people want. I would like to ask Americans, ‘Do you?’”

Unfortunately, for the deluded FOX network crowd, the tea bagger crowd, the answer is "YES!"

Gone are the days where my country was founded on the principal of the rule of law and Presumed Innocent, sold to the highest corporate bidder.

Yes, indeed, ASHAMED TO BE AN

Yes, indeed, ASHAMED TO BE AN AMERICAN ! And I say that with an old U.S. Pres. hanging in my family tree.

My dream for a way for folks across our country, a land I now call the U.S. of (greed and power) A. (ddiction) to say no, we do not support this egregious, slaughtering drone warfare? To see homemade, rear window stickers taped onto insides of car's rear window (72 pt. Ariel Narrow in boldface):

NO BOMB AH !

Please remember that this is

Please remember that this is not like a conventional war with troops wearing uniforms facing off. This enemy hides in populace areas among women and children using them as their shields. Can you forgive the Pakistani government for protecting Osama all those years? Can you condone the 30 year prison sentence meted out to the informant that finally fingered Osama who was found on the grounds abuting a Pakistani military installation? Do you want more of our men on the ground fighting and dying?. Have you forgotten the 3000 men and women who died on 9/11?

Nor should we forget the more

Nor should we forget the more than 500,000 Iraqis, most of them innocent, who were killed by our hand. (Lancet medical journal, United Kingdom). We require to look for explanations of the attack, instead of blood-feud reactionary policies that only make a few corporations rich while most on both sides suffer with no solution, because the "solution" for many of our elites is domination and imperial approaches, our daily diminished culture hanging in the balance.

I agree with you completely

I agree with you completely and we should apply the same theory here in America. If a gang member is hiding in West LA we should absolutely nuke him!! People standing next to a gang member have given up all their legal rights and deserve to die instantly!!

It is up to the Pakistanis to

It is up to the Pakistanis to enforce their laws. We should enforce ours according to our Constitution, Bill of Rights and our own laws.

It is illegal by international law to murder people with our drones. Without due process, it IS murder. This is easy enough to understand when you ask yourself this question:

"Would you allow France or Great Britain to use drones to kill people they label as terrorists on American soil?"

War? It is a war because we

War? It is a war because we have termed it so. Terrorism is a philosophy. Terrorists follow that philosophy. Terrorist acts are CRIMES against humanity. You will never win your war by killing NAMELESS people with remote bombs. All you will do is make more enemies willing to die to get even.

Obama is a war criminal if this is a war. Bush is also and so are Cheney and Rumsfield. You cannot kill your way to peace. This is truly perpetual war for perpetual peace. Killing makes enemies that want to return the favor, that is the only truth that we have proven.

The greatest country the world has ever seen with the finest Documents written by man is/has slipped or been steered into being a terroristic bully intent on keeping its war machine busy making enemies. Its a perverted version of a business creating customers to sell its products to. Our war business is making "customers" which it can continue to use to scare the American public into being afraid of so it can continue to make war profits by fighting them, the customers.

At the same time the war machine is doing this it makes the public afraid of these "customers" and they inturn allow/encourage/ or make our politicians afraid not to be "tough" if they want to be reelected. So what do they do? They authorize drone strikes. Drones are how you kill enemies, look tough, safely without the unpopular parade of friendly body bags returning home.

Drones run by the CIA also are under the control of the President and don't require Congressional approval to use. It beats having to ask Congress for an act of war, although that has been an exercise in rubber stamping due to the fear of being "weak/soft" on terror.

The process is self perpetuating and will be so until the American Public wakes up to the fact that every dollar spend fighting customers will not be available to improve our own quality of life at home. However even that incentive is slipping rapidly away as the deficits are becoming so big that were we able to stop the war business we are so broke now that peace spending would be limited.

If you haven't noticed we have arrived at the place that De Toqueville warned of where democracy fails when the people (the oligarchy) realize they can get the money for themselves. In fact it appears that the rich controlling folks have decided that the US is in the last gasp of its predominance and are going to loot the treasury before its gone.

Wake up folks, your country, its reputation, its wealth, its democracy, its preeminince and its Rule of Law are fast slipping into a shell governed by greed and money considerations.

"In fact it appears that the

"In fact it appears that the rich controlling folks have decided that the US is in the last gasp of its predominance and are going to loot the treasury before its gone."

I gasped when you eloquently wrote what I had embarrassedly only thought. "It appears." These nihilists. Is this the only result we may expect of a plutocratic class? "Plutocratic." Said as if I now, as others, merely accept the fact of a damning plutocratic class. Tragic.

makaainana, Well said. Bravo.

makaainana,

Well said. Bravo. Nothing else needs to be stated. Kudos to you.

PLEEEEEEEZE! A Pakistani

PLEEEEEEEZE! A Pakistani Lawyer. What part of the Pakistan government does he belong. Better to use drones to demoralize these killers than our people. Too bad about the innocent collateral damage, but the Pakistani Government is real clear on what they NEED to do stop the drone attacks. End of story.

I think this is a terrible

I think this is a terrible thing, but - I think the writer is giving his opinion and it may or may not be lop sided. He may be writing it so it looks a certain way to convince people of their point of view. There is a lot of things to consider when in a war and I wouldn't presume to know all the details.

I do think Pakistan needs to stop harboring these people. if you remember Bin Laden had been in Pakistan for many years.

When people are planning to attack us, they are considered enemies. I think the sword goes both ways. When Pakistan work with us instead of against us, then I would feel differently. Right now, I think they are hiding all the people they can and not in our interest.

The people planning attached on us know they are targets, so they should take responsibility to keep away from their family and friends so they won't get hurt.

I admire President Obama - after all, HE did not get us into this war. I trust he is doing what he thinks is right for our security.

Yes, we will speak out, but

Yes, we will speak out, but there are now repercussions and a secret spy state monitoring our emails, telephone messages, and comments. We live in a strange new world where corporate power and government power are wedded; where most of us are spoon-fed propaganda by the media empire, and America is now an empire, and we can "create our own reality," as a Bush official said.

If we look at our history of the Cold War, there was epic myth-making in a National Security Council memo in 1950, NSC-68. It set the stage for America becoming the world's superpower, and it's logical outcome is the National Security Strategy of the United States drafted in 2002. Let's not forget the Patriot Act, the National Defense Authorization Act, and other legislation and policy drafted to "contain" and co-opt American citizens into compliance with corporatism and government power. Witness the police and government strategy used against the occupy movement. Read Sheldon Wolin's 2008 book, DEMOCRACY INCORPORATED for a detailed and cogent analysis of how we have let superpower thinking and methods guide our politics and policies in many different areas. Read Morris Berman's book WHY AMERICA FAILED for another viewpoint. I think we've not only lost our way, we have crossed into territory that is so removed from participatory democracy, or even a sane "managed democracy," that I fear for the future of our children. The reaction of the world to our policies and practices is justified--the drones are simply harbingers of how insane we have become, blind to our own devices.

Well-put, and thank you.

Well-put, and thank you. Your and others' cogent words will somehow serve the future post empire historians (those who would not be revisionist). Yet tragic for us and our legacies.

Sageman69, Thumbs up. Way up!

Sageman69,

Thumbs up. Way up!

All of this "secret" anti

All of this "secret" anti terrorism crap is nonsense.

We don't know for sure

We don't know for sure whether U.S. Citizen Anwar al-awalaki was directly involved in planning any terrorist attacks - but there is no doubt that he was making a nuisance of himself with his Anti-American rants on Youtube. I suspect that was part of the motivation for taking him out, which if true is particularly disturbing- Rarely discussed by the administration is the motivation for killing al-awalaki's 16 year old son in another drone strike shortly after his father was killed. - That drone strike took place while the 16 year old U.S. Citizen was attending an outdoor barbecue with his uncle who may have been the main target.

Link to petition Please.

Link to petition Please.

“When women and children in

“When women and children in Waziristan are killed with Hellfire missiles, Pakistanis believe this is what the American people want. I would like to ask Americans, ‘Do you?’”

Not this American! I'm ashamed of some of my fellow citizens who would actually defend this policy merely because it's their Party's president who initiated this illegal policy. I supported President Obama in 2008 but I sure don't support him today.

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