Skip to comments.Drone Strikesí Dangers to Get Rare Moment in Public Eye (US Saudi drone base revealed)
Posted on 02/06/2013 9:10:53 AM PST by Seizethecarp
Mr. Brennan, a former C.I.A. station chief in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, has taken a particular interest in Yemen, sounding early alarms within the administration about the threat developing there, working closely with neighboring Saudi Arabia to gain approval for a secret C.I.A. drone base there that is used for American strikes, and making the impoverished desert nation a test case for American counterterrorism strategy.
The first strike in Yemen ordered by the Obama administration, in December 2009, was by all accounts a disaster. American cruise missiles carrying cluster munitions killed dozens of civilians, including many women and children. Another strike, six months later, killed a popular deputy governor, inciting angry demonstrations and an attack that shut down a critical oil pipeline.
Not long afterward, the C.I.A. began quietly building a drone base in Saudi Arabia to carry out strikes in Yemen. American officials said that the first time the C.I.A. used the Saudi base was to kill Mr. Awlaki in September 2011.
In some cases, drones have killed members of Al Qaeda when it seemed that they might easily have been arrested or captured, according to a number of Yemeni officials and tribal figures. One figure in particular has stood out: Adnan al Qadhi, who was killed, apparently in a drone strike, in early November in a town near the capital.
For sure, we could be going after some of these guys, the officer said. Thats what were trained to do, and the Americans trained us. It doesnt make sense.
(Excerpt) Read more at nytimes.com ...
Big buzz on the web this AM is the revelation of a Saudi drone base from which the US launched the Awlaki attack.
This NYT story focuses on innocent Yemenis zapped by drones for picking up Al Qaeda hitch-hikers or while getting grilled by Al Qaeda for opposing Al Qaeda in one case thus causing tribal blood-lust against the US.
NYT pointedly claims no imminent attack was evident in numerous drone attacks which were conducted against low level new recruits who easily could have been arrested by US-trained Yemeni police and COIN forces.
Brennan was at the head of the CIA waterboarding and drone operations under Bush and drone targeting under Obama from within the White House thus creating a problem for Obama’s left-wing anti-WOT, anti-drone base.
Secret base - no more
This NYT piece sounds anti-drone-policy, anti-Brennan, and thus anti-Obama. What’s going on?
Somebody in the Administration leaked this “secret” base to the NYT and NYT and WaPo appear to admit to knowing about the existence of the base for two years, but previously agreed to withhold that knowledge.
Barry’s team seems to have wanted to get this out prior to Brennan’s confirmation hearing so that it didn’t become bombshell during the hearing.
All are still (so far) withholding the LOCATION of the base within Saudi Arabia. Leak of the location coming...3..2..1..
We no longer have a place to put the ones we capture alive..so better dead and better we don’t risk our own people to get them. They wanted a confirmed kill of Ben Laden..so we sent the Seals.
Now that Demorats see themselves “safely” in office for four years they are attacking Barry for his obviously rogue drone program. A big lib on Salon just admitted that she kept her mouth shut about drones during the campaign because she believed “Romney’s drone program would have been worse,” but now she has to speak up (guilty conscience).
Americans will die because of this.
I would think that the Saudi royals could be put at risk because of this as Al Qaeda made US troops on Saudi soil their prime reason for 911 and for attacks on the kingdom.
Brennan is supposed to be in tight with the royals so I don’t get how leaking this base happened now or at any time unless NYT or some other anti-drone media outlet threatened to blow the secret in the middle of the Brennan hearings.
Yep. The Saudi royals are “not muslim enough” and need to be murdered. It’s the muslim way...
Sadly, with prison overcrowding, this same reasoning can be applied domestically.
One aspect to this story is that a drone attack can be accomplished from anywhere in the world. A secret base like this one in Saudi Arabia could be used to kill Americans on American soil.
If the administration wanted to take out political enemies, those targeted would have one less means of stopping the attacks.
Is it now acceptable to waterboard a suspected terrorist if he has been struck by a drone and “on fire”?
There has to be some complacency by the Yemen government for this kind of thing to go on. The drones being used are easily seen on radar and could be easily shot down. Also the reaction by the Yemen “authorities” seems pretty lackadaisical. The reaction by the man in the street is probably incredible anger as the first missile strike used cluster bombs that killed far more children than the Sandy Hook guy killed and if you look at some of the images on google left some pretty badly mangled kids (one kid had both arms blown off and looked to be burned over most of his body).
The strikes in Yemen are not at all about protecting the US against terrorist but more about protecting the House of Saudi from potential threats (real or imagined). Incredibly stupid if you ask me as these strikes are nothing but cold blooded murder and you can bet that this will come back to bite us sometime in the future.
The drone killings have two benefits.
1) The first is a beneficial for Americans as we don’t have a lot of room at Gitmo and it’s dangerous to try them in our courts and also our Precedent and Holder can’t find a way to release them for “humane” reasons so they can kill more American soldiers.
2) The second is beneficial to al Qaeda and Precedent/Holder as captured jihadis sometimes give us really good information that helps us against al Qaeda and the coming Caliphate