The era of American drone supremacy is fading – but the threat of drone multipolarity is real – and potentially endless

30 June 2014 — Drone Warfare

edward luceSo writes Edward Luce in the FT. He points out that there is no treaty governing the use of military drones as for the use of nuclear weapons.

We summarise with added links to Rand Corporation and Stimson Centre.

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Drone Wars: “Force Protection Alpha in Effect” By Brian Terrell

31 May 2014 — Dissident Voice

On April 15, 2014, when the story broke on the world that the Central Intelligence Agency’s covert program of assassination by remotely controlled drones is not distinct from the drone program of the U.S. Air Force as we had been told, I was on the “Sacred Peace Walk,” an event sponsored each spring by the Nevada Desert Experience, a 70 mile trek from Las Vegas to the Nevada Nuclear Test Site. Creech Air Force Base is along the way and we had already made plans for a protest there the next morning. While the CIA’s drone program is shrouded in secrecy, the Air Force supposedly has been using drones strictly as a weapon for waging war against combatants in recognized areas of conflict such as Afghanistan and formerly in Iraq, under a chain of command that is accountable to elected officials. Some who condemn the CIA’s assassinations by drones as illegal give a pass to or even laud the Air Force use of drones as a more restrained way to fight war.

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World Has No Idea How U.S. Decides on Wars By David Swanson

14 March 2014 — WashingtonsBlog

People from Yemen and Pakistan and elsewhere have told me, and have testified in the U.S. Congress, that they have a hard time convincing their neighbors that everyone in the United States doesn’t hate them.  There are buzzing killer robots flying over their houses night and day and every now and then blowing a bunch of people up with a missile with very little rhyme or reason that anyone nearby can decipher.  They don’t know where to go or not go, what to do or not do, to be safe or keep their children safe.  Their children have instinctively taken to crouching and covering their heads just like U.S. children in the 1950s were taught to do as supposed protection from Soviet nuclear weapons.

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Drone Wars: UK Becomes New Pakistan? Live Drone Training Flights Target Local Residents

22 February 2014 — Drone Wars UK 

Watchkeeper UAV first flight in UK at MoD Aberporth. 14th April 2010.Drone Wars UK understands that the Ministry of Defence (MoD) will announce on Monday (24 Feb) that live training flights of the Watchkeeper drone will begin over Salisbury Plain in Wiltshire.

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More than 2,400 Dead as Obama’s Drone Campaign Marks Five Years

23 January 2014 — The Bureau of Investigative Journalism

Obama has launched over 390 covert drone strikes in his first five years in office (Pete Souza/White House).

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.

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US embarrassment “trumps British justice” in drone victim’s case By David Swanson

20 January 2014 — Reprieve

The Court of Appeal in London has today ruled that the case brought against the UK Government by a Pakistani victim of a drone strike cannot proceed as it might result in the “condemnation of the US by a court of this country.”
 
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The A-Z of Drones 2013 Part 1 By Chris Cole

24 December 2013 – DroneWars.net

letter_aIt 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...

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Germany Says No to Weaponized Drones By David Swanson

15 November 2013 – War Is a Crime

Germany had planned to buy a fleet of “Euro Hawk” killer drones — perhaps in an effort to bring the European Union up to speed with certain other Nobel Peace laureates.

But something happened on the way to the celestial colosseum.

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Amnesty Intl. Tries to Explains Why It Won’t Oppose All Drone Murders By David Swanson

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.

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New Kind of War Is Being Legalized By David Swanson

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.

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Drone Wars: MoD study sets out how to sell wars to the public By Ben Quinn

26 September 2013 — The Guardian

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.

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