Imran Khan: “American drone strikes in Pakistan must stop. It’s butchery, and the true horror of it is hidden from the West”

4 October 2018 — Drone Warfare

Since 2004, the US government has attacked thousands of targets in tribal areas along the Afghan border in Northwest Pakistan. It used unmanned aerial vehicles operated by the US Air Force under the operational control of the CIA’s Special Activities Division. Attacks increased substantially under Bush’s successor, Nobel Peace Prize winner, Barack Obama.

A non-violent campaign in Pakistan against drone strikes by the Tehreek-e-Insaf party, led by Imran Khan, involved blocking the route to pressure Washington to stop targeting armed groups in the region bordering Afghanistan. NATO supply containers to and from Afghanistan via Khyber Pakhtunkhwa were stopped at border points until US drone attacks stop and a formal apology was later given to the government for the killings in Pakistan. It ended in 2014.

Imran Khan attacks those countrymen who support NATO’s war on the Taliban:

“They have absolutely no idea. They sit in the drawing room. They read the English-language newspapers, which bear very little resemblance to what is real Pakistan. I promise you, they would be lost in our villages . . .*

Khan believes the US are responsible for the rise of the Pakistani Taliban, allies of the Afghan Taliban. 

“We ended up sending our army into our tribal areas at the request of the Americans. And our areas got devastated. We had, more or less, a civil-war situation there. The aid was minuscule compared to the loss of billions and billions and the blood our country spilt.”

A leaked document confirmed that 81 civilians including children died in this 2006 CIA drone strike

He adheres to the Sufi tradition of egalitarianism and the acceptance of all creeds and beliefs in society and believes: “All terrorism is politics. All this nonsense of religious terrorism. There’s no such thing as religious terrorism. It’s politics behind it. The political injustice. Perceived injustice is why people pick up arms — throughout history.”

* Direct quotations from a hostile account in the Times


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