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View Diary: The Sad Truth about the Drone Strike Program (67 comments)

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  •  I think they're horrible (7+ / 0-)

    the question is how many American Lives do we have to risk in order to bring down that collateral impact?  The Drone Strike program may be the ultimate in that argument, our risk is effectively zero - their risk and damage is maximized.  So instead should we put a pilots life at risk, and perhaps some Special Forces - can we guarantee that even they won't still have innocent casualties?

    I do think that we have over-relied on the Drones and chosen targets poorly.  Something has to change.

    But in exchange for that horror how many of our lives are worth losing in order to save (maybe some of) their lives?

    I don't know if there's a good answer to that.

    •  it depends (6+ / 0-)

      on whether we want even to be able to pretend that we are a moral and just people.

      The cold passion for truth hunts in no pack. -Robinson Jeffers

      by Laurence Lewis on Thu Feb 07, 2013 at 08:26:53 AM PST

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    •  I totally reject that (5+ / 0-)

      First of all, this perpetual war thing is absurd.  I get the point of getting Obama.  I'm no saint, I even get the point of considerable massive retaliation to discourage more attacks.  

      But this idea that we alone among nations have the right to visit death on others with no risk of death to ourselves forever and a day equates the United States with God and  not a very nice God at that.

      Would we strike Russia? China? the UK, France with a drone if they didn't accept our dodgy "evidence"?  No, because they can defend their sovereignty.  

      We only strike those who cannot defend themselves.  And of course, if you are a terrorist this is exactly why they believe they are justified in using any method they can to strike back at us.  

      We are the most powerful nation on earth with a military not even second to the next dozen combined and we are the most fearful, paranoid, people on the planet.  

      I'm guessing based on the number of deaths so far in my state , that we've had more Americans die of the flu this season than died on 9/11 but we can't even be bothered with public health.  We don't care how many thousands die from gun violence even if we are currently pretending that we do.  Yet we'll kill people thousands of miles away on the excuse that maybe, someday, they might if lucky and if all the stars aligned be able to kill a few Americans.

      We do not have the moral justification for this massive overreach of power whatever legal justification anyone can dream up.

      •  ahem... (0+ / 0-)
        I get the point of getting Obama.
        I knew what you meant but I'm just pointing this out...

        The greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was convincing online commenters that they have anything to say.-- B.F.

        by lcj98 on Thu Feb 07, 2013 at 08:56:17 AM PST

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      •  We have extradition we many of those countries (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        cotterperson, artmartin, Yasuragi

        and have other treaties that give us more flexibility in addressing concerns about terrorists without resorting to Drone Strikes in Russia, or China or the UK.

        Frankly, all of them handle terrorists more harshly than we do - so there isn't that much reason for us to act independently most of the time.  None of them can expect a Drone Strike anytime soon, and for good reason, there's no need.

        Similarly there's a reason Yemen and Somalia "can't fight back" - they don't have a functioning government.  Similarly that lack of a government isn't doing all that much to stem terrorism on their own. Pakistan could do something about it - they just Don't, and you can't say they're "helpless" since they have the bomb.

        These situations are not simple or one-size-fits-all.

        As far as perpetual war goes - that's what the AUMF signed us up for, and my view is that we're rapidly approaching the time when we need to repeal the AUMF and End this War's perpetuation.

        •  Rep. Barbara Lee... (10+ / 0-)

          the only one to vote against the AUMF - agrees with you and has introduced legislation to repeal it.

          I am frankly amazed at the silence from progressives on that.

          Almost everything you do will seem insignificant, but it is important that you do it. - Mahatma Gandhi

          by NLinStPaul on Thu Feb 07, 2013 at 09:02:12 AM PST

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          •  Barbara Lee, the voice of sanity in DC (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            from your link.....

            “Nine years ago, I made the unpopular decision to vote against this authorization based on a fundamental belief that a blank check to wage war anywhere, at any time, and for any length does not serve the national security interests of the United States,” said Congresswoman Lee. “In reflecting on the rush-to-war in Afghanistan and President Bush’s misguided war-of-choice in Iraq, my worst fears have unfortunately been realized.
            “Over the last nine years this broad authorization of force has had far-reaching implications which shake the very foundations of our great nation and democracy.
            “It has been used to justify warrantless surveillance and wiretapping activities, indefinite detention practices that fly in the face of our constitutional values, extrajudicial targeted-killing operations, and a policy of borderless and open-ended war that threatens to indefinitely extend U.S. military engagement around the world.

            "Who are these men who really run this land? And why do they run it with such a thoughtless hand?" David Crosby

            by allenjo on Thu Feb 07, 2013 at 11:16:23 AM PST

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          •  Thank God for Barbara Lee (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Yasuragi, Nada Lemming

            I attended the Lawyers' Committee for Civil Rights of SF MLK Luncheon last week and she was the keynote.  You can only imagine the speed with which I jumped out of my chair applauding when she announced that she was going after full repeal of the AUMF, on the grounds that the scope of the power granted under it is itself ultimately a danger to America given how it has been used--and in far more insidious ways than we think of when we think about the war on terror.

        •  Somalia is very relevant here in Minneapolis (0+ / 0-)

          We have tens of thousands of Somali refugees here.  Their children were born here, are citizens of course.  Some get invited back to Somalia to learn about their cultural heritage or to send money back to the old country.  All immigrant groups do this.  But of course, we just might have a few who get within 6 degrees of separation of a Somali terrorist cell.  So which of these Minneapolis citizens are being targeted by drones?  

          As to extradition with other nations, you have to have some charge don't you? I suppose we have some secret deals there too but normally you can't just say send your citizen X to the US because we think he might be a terrorist.  

      •  greenbell - that's a lot of flu deaths (0+ / 0-)

        50 people have died in Indiana, 130 in Minnesota. What state has 3,000?

        "let's talk about that"

        by VClib on Thu Feb 07, 2013 at 04:43:29 PM PST

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