Tuesday, May 10, 2011

It's Okay When We Do It

An article on St Louis Today discusses how unmanned Predator drone aircraft are controlled from Whiteman Air Force Base in Missouri.

The part of the article that really got my attention was this:

Some religious leaders and human rights groups question the morality and legality of the weapon. They cite the deaths of innocent civilians and say the use of Predators for targeted killings of "high-value" targets may violate international law.

[Military analyst Loren Thompson of the Lexington Institute] called the morality debate "a bogus issue."

Manned aircraft would be far more destructive, cause more collateral damage and be more likely to lead to civilian casualties, he said.

Granted, Thompson is a military analyst and not a member of the military or the administration, but what he said essentially reflects our policy. Difficult to detect, unmanned drones firing Hellfire missiles at suspected Al Qaeda or Taliban--remember there is a difference--leaders have killed many innocent people and somehow the morality of that has become acceptable. Because we are at war. And we have no way of knowing when that war will end. Don't look for the end since killing innocent people tends to make more enemies.

Put the shoe on the other foot and imagine what would happen if another country used the same type of weapon to kill someone they determined was dangerous enough to warrant such an attack and they lived in the United States. I think we would do more than file a protest.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Not if, when?

If al Quaida could take take down skyscrapers without missiles, just by ramming airplanes into our flimsy buildings...then an enemy with a grudge may not need the huge infrastructure behind our drones to pull off airborne terrorism. We're talking a garage project using existing tech off the shelf.

For cripes sake, the "Barefoot Bandit" fly all the to the Bahamas without detection.

I fear we'll regret our bigotry toward others, and our refusal to follow legal norms. Obama's decision to militarize our entire foreign policy is the fantasy reasoning of a 5 year old.

Obama's decision to mislabel his vengeance missions "justice" may well come back to haunt us. Cold-blooded revenge is not justice, nor do such efforts even qualify as effective military tactics. Where are the trials? What is the strategy? What are the collateral effects?

What is the end goal of all this murder? There appears to be nothing but short-term victory dances and worries about long term profits for multinational corporations. Who is leading AMERICA? And to what? Have the elites gone completely infantile?

There are no wise politicians left who can see beyond schoolyard bullying. Both parties are morally--and tactically--about as sophisticated as drunk kids at their first kegger who discover a shotgun in the closet and decide they should go down the block to teach someone a lesson.

When will we get some adults in charge?