The armed forces should seek to make British involvement in future wars more palatable to the public by reducing the public profile of repatriation ceremonies for casualties, according to a Ministry of Defence unit that formulates strategy.
23 January 2014 — The Bureau of Investigative Journalism
Five years ago, on January 23 2009, a CIA drone flattened a house in Pakistan’s tribal regions. It was the third day of Barack Obama’s presidency, and this was the new commander-in-chief’s first covert drone strike.
Initial reports said up to ten militants were killed, including foreign fighters and possibly a ‘high-value target’ – a successful first hit for the fledgling administration.
24 December 2013 – DroneWars.net
It was good to see large numbers turn out at a big protest at Parc Aberporth, the drone test centre in West Wales, in September as the owners announced a big expansion. It was even better to see Yemeni journalist Abdulelah Haider Shaye released from prison even though he is still under virtual house arrest. Phase two of the UK government-industry programme, ASTRAEA, which aims to open up UK airspace to civil drones, came to an end this year. While the drone lobby is keeping up the pressure the public remain extremely sceptical. News that British drones may be heading to Africa came as a big surprise, and will no doubt be a focus of campaigning in the coming year. Continue reading this...
5 November 2013 – DavidSwanson
I was on Margaret Flowers’ and Kevin Zeese’s Clearing the Fog Radio today (http://clearingthefogradio.org ) together with Naureen Shah of Amnesty International. The show ought to appear soon on iTunes here, and mixcloud here, and is already on UStream here although it seems to be missing the audio. I had earlier published a critique of AI’s report on drones.
22 October 2013 – War Is A Crime
There’s a dark side to the flurry of reports and testimony on drones, helpful as they are in many ways. When we read that Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch oppose drone strikes that violate international law, some of us may be inclined to interpret that as a declaration that, in fact, drone strikes violate international law. On the contrary, what these human rights groups mean is that some drone strikes violate the law and some do not, and they want to oppose the ones that do.
26 September 2013 — The Guardian
Historic U.K. Trial. Anti-drones Protesters Praised by Judge. Illegality of Drone Warfare Upheld By Chris Cole
8 October 2013 — Drone Wars
As many of you will have seen reported in the media the Waddington Six trial took place yesterday. All six spoke about the dangers of drone warfare and how the use of drones by British forces breaches international law. District Judge John Stoddert listened carefully to everything that was said, but stated that he felt constrained by what he could do. As has been reported in various media, the judge said that he convicted “with a heavy heart” and then went on to urge the six to appeal to a higher court as there were important issues in the case that needed careful examination. The six are considering their next move. For a good summary of the day see War isn’t a video game: witnessing (against) drone warfare.
The Government Is Spying On Us Through Our Computers, Phones, Cars, Buses, Streetlights, At Airports And On The Street, Via Mobile Scanners And Drones, Through Our Smart Meters, And In Many Other Ways
23 September 2013 — WashingtonsBlog
Take a Peek at How Widespread Spying Has Become
Even now – after all of the revelations by Edward Snowden and other whistleblowers – spying apologists say that the reports are “exaggerated” or “overblown”, and that the government only spies on potential bad guys.
7 September 2013 — FAIR Blog
Whatever comes of Obama’s confrontation with Assad, an even more dangerous confrontation lies in wait–the one with Iran. If another round of negotiations with Tehran should fail, Obama may soon be obliged to make good on his vow to stop Iran from developing a nuclear weapon. “I will not hesitate to use force when it is necessary to defend the United States and its interests,” Obama told the American Israel Public Affairs Committee in March 2012. Continue reading this...
12 August 2013 — FAIR Blog
A headline is sometimes worth a thousand words, and this was definitely the case after a deadly drone strike occurred in Yemen last week.
”Drone Strike Kills Six Suspected Militants in Yemen,” a Reutersheadline (8/7/13) declared. “More Suspected Al-Qaeda Militants Killed as Drone Strikes Intensify in Yemen,” aCNN.com headline (8/8/13) offered. Whatever the language, one message was clear: “Suspected terrorists” or “militants” had been killed.
10 August 2013 — Dissident Voice
Any sound that Watson made, above the level of a very low whisper, would be picked up by it… There was of course no way of knowing whether you were being watched at any given moment…You had to live — did live, from habit that became instinct — in the assumption that every sound you made was overheard, and, except in darkness, every movement scrutinized.
– George Orwell, 1984
FRINFORMSUM 8/9/2013: NSA Revelations Might Play a Part in Upcoming German Elections, NSC Records Still Not Subject to the FOIA, and More By Lauren Harper
9 August, 2013 — Unredacted
International fallout from Edward Snowden’s revelations of NSA surveillance methods continues this week, and might play a role in Germany’s upcoming elections. The German newspaper Der Spiegel reports that the NSA leaks demonstrate that German intelligence “sends massive amounts of intercepted data to the NSA,” and that “center-left Social Democrats have made the Snowden revelations an issue in Germany’s upcoming parliamentary election.” Continue reading this...
9 July 2013 — williambowles.info
Of drones and whistleblowers
The Guardian (Australia)
While courageous whistleblower Bradley Manning continues to languish in a US military prison for daring to tell the world about the deliberate US policy of assassinating civilians and other unarmed opponents of its policies, the US leadership continues …
6 June 2013 — WashingtonsBlog
Yes, Government Spooks May Be Listening
The Obama administration has been caught spying on the Verizon phone calls of tens of millions of Americans. But the government has sought to “reassure” us that it is only tracking “metadata” such as the time and place of the calls, and not the actual content of the calls.
That claim is patently absurd.