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Drone warfare's deadly civilian toll: a very personal view
guardian ^ | 09/19/2012 | james jeffrey

Posted on 09/20/2012 8:35:06 AM PDT by barryobi

I was minutes from ordering a drone strike on a Taliban insurgent – until I realised I was watching an Afghan child at play

I find myself caught between the need to follow the drone debate and the need to avoid unpleasant memories it stirs. I used drones – unmanned aerial vehicles – during the nadir of my military career that was an operational tour in Afghanistan. I remember cuing up a US Predator strike before deciding the computer screen wasn't depicting a Taliban insurgent burying an improvised explosive device in the road; rather, a child playing in the dirt.

After returning from Afghanistan at the end of 2009, I left the British army in 2010. I wanted to put as much distance as I could between myself and the UK, leaving to study in America (where I still reside). By doing so, I inadvertently placed myself in the country that is spearheading development in drone technology and use, highlighted by each report of a drone strike and the usual attendant civilian casualties.

(Excerpt) Read more at guardian.co.uk ...


TOPICS: Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: drone; obama
Another thing the MSM would have crucified Bush over had he been the 'drone King' that Obama is.
1 posted on 09/20/2012 8:35:10 AM PDT by barryobi
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To: barryobi

So? Human soldiers on the ground don’t occasionally shoot somebody by mistake? In war, it happens.


2 posted on 09/20/2012 8:37:07 AM PDT by PapaBear3625 (Charlie Daniels - Payback Time http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EWwTJj_nosI)
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To: barryobi
the usual attendant civilian casualties

The muzzies are slow to learn that if you harbor terrorist, associate with them, or even just "tolerate" them, you become a legitimate target also.

3 posted on 09/20/2012 8:38:54 AM PDT by The Sons of Liberty ("Get that evil, foreign, muslim, usurping bastard out of MY White House!" FUBO GTFO!)
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To: barryobi

Folks, it’s the Guardian.

Read the print on a t*rd...you’ll get more information.


4 posted on 09/20/2012 8:40:53 AM PDT by Da Coyote
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To: barryobi

“until I realised I was watching an Afghan child at play”

It sounds like the checks and balances used to verify targets is working.


5 posted on 09/20/2012 8:42:50 AM PDT by edcoil (It is not over until I win.)
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To: barryobi
I was minutes from ordering a drone strike on a Taliban insurgent – until I realised I was watching an Afghan child at play



6 posted on 09/20/2012 8:43:03 AM PDT by EGPWS (Trust in God, question everyone else)
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To: barryobi

Present and future islamsists should be past islamists. Their age, sex or conditon doesn’t matter to me as long as they’re dead.


7 posted on 09/20/2012 8:46:13 AM PDT by onedoug
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To: EGPWS

Why don’t I care anymore?

A stray puppy followed me home once. It was cute and I wanted to keep it. My mother said no honey, you can’t have that puppy because it has a terrible habit - growing up to be a dog.

Not the fault of the puppy, of course. But she was right. A pit bull puppy is pretty darn cute, but they are deadly as a mature dog.


8 posted on 09/20/2012 8:50:10 AM PDT by KittenClaws (You may have to fight a battle more than once in order to win it." - Margaret Thatcher)
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To: barryobi
We should all take a deep breath and remember that it was only 60 years ago or so that it was expected and accepted war-fighting practice to kill civilians. It has only been very recently, in the historical big picture, that the possibility of choosing to avoid civilian casualties has existed.

The fact that we do our best to avoid them, and mostly can, is a HUGE advance! I don't agree with those who would cast blame because our still imperfect processes and systems don't sort out combatant from civilian reliably.

War is hell, and it's an ongoing, merciless tragedy from start to finish. Though we've made great strides toward narrowing the destructive scope of our missions, there will always be unintended death. We and ours do our best, and that's all that can be done.

9 posted on 09/20/2012 8:55:52 AM PDT by TChris ("Hello", the politician lied.)
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To: barryobi

Just call the child’s death “Post-Natal Abortion” and the Libs should be fine with it.


10 posted on 09/20/2012 9:05:24 AM PDT by TexasRepublic (Socialism is the gospel of envy and the religion of thieves)
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To: TexasRepublic

I should add, you can’t fight nice and hope to win wars.


11 posted on 09/20/2012 9:07:18 AM PDT by TexasRepublic (Socialism is the gospel of envy and the religion of thieves)
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To: TexasRepublic
...you can’t fight nice and hope to win wars.

Well put.

There are still too many -- mostly Dem -- politicians who just don't get that.

12 posted on 09/20/2012 9:09:19 AM PDT by TChris ("Hello", the politician lied.)
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To: barryobi

That child is now approaching 15 years of age and is undergoing indoctrination and training to kill you and your comrades.


13 posted on 09/20/2012 9:40:10 AM PDT by JimRed (Excise the cancer before it kills us; feed &water the Tree of Liberty! TERM LIMITS, NOW & FOREVER!)
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To: barryobi

How to insure that childen are playing in the dirt at all IED implacements?

Publish an article like this.


14 posted on 09/20/2012 9:41:29 AM PDT by super7man
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To: onedoug
Their age, sex or conditon doesn’t matter to me as long as they’re dead.

The girls and women, being mere property of the Jihadists, should be spared whenever possible, and prayed for.

15 posted on 09/20/2012 9:43:21 AM PDT by JimRed (Excise the cancer before it kills us; feed &water the Tree of Liberty! TERM LIMITS, NOW & FOREVER!)
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To: barryobi

To win a war, you must destroy the enemy’s will to fight not just their means to fight. Demonstrating the willingness and ability to kill civilians is a good way to do that. Ala, Hiroshima and Nagasake.


16 posted on 09/20/2012 9:45:20 AM PDT by super7man
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To: TChris

200 years ago War Fighting hardly killed any civilians at least directly.....WW1 did not. WW2 got the civilian killing off the ground by the Brit and American bombing of German cities....it has not slowed that much since.


17 posted on 09/20/2012 10:06:59 AM PDT by iopscusa (El Vaquero. (SC Lowcountry Cowboy))
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To: barryobi

It would sure be nice if those Moslem boys would put on an easily identifiable uniform and agree to fight us on an open plain. They’d last about 30 seconds. They have no honor. They just want power without creating a society like ours that allows us to field such an overwhelming military. If I had one of those Star Trek transporters and a tricorder that showed me where every thug lived, I’d be beaming into their bedrooms at night to slit their throats. Drones come about as close to that as we can come right now.


18 posted on 09/20/2012 10:14:23 AM PDT by blueunicorn6 ("A crack shot and a good dancer")
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To: Da Coyote

It’s be cold day in hell before there will ever be a pro-western article in The Guardian. What would this clown have thought about WWII where we deliberately targeted civilian populations killing hundreds of thousands of them in Germany and Japan?


19 posted on 09/20/2012 10:27:29 AM PDT by driftless2
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To: barryobi

“I was minutes from ordering a drone strike on a Taliban insurgent – until I realised I was watching an Afghan child at play”

So? If you let the enemy use human shields successfully, then they will continue to use human shields. Do you think the scumbag would have hesitated to kill that child to kill you? How many other people did you condemn to death by letting this guy go?

If this is what our leadership is coming to, we’re doomed.


20 posted on 09/20/2012 10:41:30 AM PDT by Little Ray (AGAINST Obama in the General.)
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To: JimRed
I wouldn't trust any of them. Witness the likes of Huma Abedin and her family. Or that supposed woman passing out sweets on 9/11.

I am fed to the teeth with islam and only hope we can stem its horrific cancer before it metastasizes throughout our entire society.

21 posted on 09/20/2012 11:46:52 AM PDT by onedoug
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To: iopscusa
...by the Brit and American bombing of German cities....

Ever hear of the Battle Of Britain?

Honestly.

22 posted on 09/20/2012 11:53:48 AM PDT by onedoug
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To: KittenClaws
Sounds like Colonel John Chivington: "Nits make lice."
23 posted on 09/20/2012 1:24:25 PM PDT by TXnMA ("Allah": Satan's current alias...)
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To: onedoug

Of course I’ve heard of the Battle of Britain. Have you heard of the Soviet rape of Germany or of Eisenhower’s murder of millions of German war veterans....the Allies wrote the history but there is a lot more than just Winston Churchill’s megalomania writings to be known.


24 posted on 09/27/2012 2:08:12 PM PDT by iopscusa (El Vaquero. (SC Lowcountry Cowboy))
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To: iopscusa
200 years ago War Fighting hardly killed any civilians at least directly

doesn't matter, they're still legitimate targets.

When war is duly declared, it is not merely a war between this and the adverse government in their political characters. Every man is, in judgment of law, a party to the acts of his own government, and a war between the governments of two nations, is a war between all the individuals of the one, and all the individuals of which the other nation is composed. Government is the representative of the will of all the people, and acts for the whole society. This is the theory in all governments, and the best writers on the law of nations concur in the doctrine, that when the sovereign of a state declares war against another sovereign, it implies that the whole nation declares war, and that all the subjects of the one, are enemies to all the subjects of the other. Very important consequences concerning the obligations of subjects, are deducible from this principle.
James Kent, Commentaries

-----

IMHO, the government really screwed the pooch on 'legitimate war' since it has no legal authority to declare war on an ideology.

25 posted on 09/27/2012 2:18:38 PM PDT by MamaTexan (I am a Person as Created by the Laws of Nature, not a person as created by the laws of Man)
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To: iopscusa

Megolomania,eh? Got ya’.


26 posted on 09/27/2012 4:00:59 PM PDT by onedoug
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