Trump Admin Set to Expand Number of Civilians Killed by Drone Strikes

By Nicholas West

The United States drone program by all objective analysis has not been a precision instrument for killing terrorists. Instead, the program has reversed long-standing policies of basic international human rights and rules of war by implementing pre-emptive killing without due process.

After years of Obama’s drone strikes that independent watchdog group Airwars estimated to have been ten times the number as those of George Bush before him, the political pendulum has swung back to the right, but the killing of civilians continues to accelerate under Obama’s supposed arch nemesis Donald Trump.

Now, however, all pretense at protecting innocent lives is about to be cast off and the killing will become inexplicably worse as the Trump admin reportedly seeks to do away with a clause contained in the Presidential Policy Guidance known as “near certainty.” As

In 2013, President Obama, who drastically increased the number of drone strikes during his tenure, delivered a speech in which he outlined the contours of new Presidential Policy Guidance, or PPG, making this principle abundantly clear. Henceforth, the decision to target and kill people outside “areas of active hostilities” would require a “near certainty” of no civilian casualties, and lethal force would only be used when capture was not feasible. In essence, the use of force in these limited circumstances would more closely approximate a law enforcement, rather than wartime, paradigm.

(Source: Defense One)

As Mahanty later notes in his article, this Guidance itself is fundamentally unsatisfactory to anyone who values human rights, due process, and international rules of engagement, but at least it acknowledged that civilian casualties are deeply unacceptable and must be avoided as a principle tenet of foreign policy.

There is evidence to suggest that the new administration has, in practice, already dismissed the “near certainty” clause as civilian deaths have increased by orders of magnitude since Trump took office. Here are the numbers from Airwars.org which hardly do justice to the human lives these statistics represent:

Take notice of the category “Minimum Civilians Estimated Killed by Coalition.” Despite that qualification, U.S. CENTCOM has reported only 1/10 of that number, demonstrating full knowledge of how these deaths will be perceived by the average decent human being.
And here is what it looks like during the transition period from Obama to Trump in the two most heavily targeted countries:

Even if one supports the concept of kill or be killed, the loosening of an already ludicrously loose policy of drone bombing will be embraced as a countermeasure by the increasing number of nations who are developing drone programs amid a global drone arms race of military supremacy. Moreover, any sentiment that the U.S. once had as a peaceful nation forced to fight back following 9/11 is no longer a defensible position.

As the drone market is set to double by 2024, and as drone lethality is being designed to increase, it appears that innocent people are a distant consideration compared to the hungry needs of the military superstate.

Nicholas West writes for ActivistPost.com. He also writes for Counter Markets agorist newsletter.

This article may be freely republished in part or in full with author attribution and source link.

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15 Comments on "Trump Admin Set to Expand Number of Civilians Killed by Drone Strikes"

  1. Imagine Wezzterners simply mass murdered/droned/raped/robbed, in order so that their free nations and oceans, can be invaded and conquered by the ZNWO! Yeah; non-Wezztern human lives, especially of Muslims/Catholics – mean nothing to these serial Cannibal/Necrophiliac killers!

    • All, with the ultimate evil aims – to conquer the world 5 major oceans and all the major Straits, towards a fascist ZNWO; whilst destroying the strongest anti-ZNWO institutions of Islam & Catholicism, and their believers along the way, under the ZNWO’s increasing genocidal Depopulation agenda (including through their most evil terrorist cells, IS/ISIS/ISIL – which are created by MOSSAD/CIA as revealed by the brave Snowden)!

      And both ZioNa*i-controlled Lib/Consv Democ/Tr*mp’s regimes are part of this NA*O ‘s ZNWO’s beastly horns!

      • Tnx for your understanding as usual Keith! But this stu**yAP keep censoring my freedom of speech and sometimes even advertized my comments as *sp*m’! I wonder why the cowards are so scared to hear the truths!

  2. Disqus-helpsGOVTbreaklaws&kill | June 24, 2017 at 3:40 pm | Reply

    don’t miss… independent lens …national bird …on PBS .

    see how drones blow up hospitals and kill women and children

    so Obama’s UBS banker buddy Robert wolf’s drone company
    can get rich off taxpayer funded no-bid pentagon contracts
    private drone contractors killing in the name of the USA taxpayer

    for wolf & Obama to transfer all blame and vengeance and hatred
    away from themselves and onto American citizens who have to pay for it
    all , but do not benefit in any way from Robert wolf drone company .

  3. I do not care as long as we are killing Muslims. It is inhuman not to kill Muslims.

    • It is inhumane not to exterminate US rats! You are one of those hateful Trump-tards and probably a pedophile.

    • Doran Zeigler | June 25, 2017 at 2:16 pm | Reply

      You apparently, are the type of individual that our government prefers.
      Someone who eats up their sh*t, swallows every morsel, enjoys it, then
      asks for more. You are an obvious product of AmeriKKKa’s Dumbing
      Down educational system where diplomas are given for the lowest scores.
      Congratulations!

    • U must be born as the most filthy ZioNa*i canni*al p*g!

  4. Trump set the Nazi murderers loose.

  5. Doran Zeigler | June 25, 2017 at 2:37 pm | Reply

    Why would this administration even bother to take the time to eliminate the farcical “Near Certainty” clause? It never was an impediment to the duplicitous Obama. Is Trump so shallow that he believes that by eliminating this clause he will be insulating himself from charges of being a war criminal? He shouldn’t worry about that for he will be in good company as almost EVERY modern president we have had has membership in the notorious “War Criminal Club.” Maybe he wants to get a bigger civilian score than Obama — in Trump’s world, more is always better.

    The hypocrisy exhibited by the AmeriKKKan government is ASTOUNDING. Unfortunately, they are creating an environment that is so polluted with hypocrisy that it is infecting many of our people.

    We also see the “positive” effects of better living through chemistry, namely the fluoride in municipal water which has produced the “Oh Hum” attitude toward the death and destruction committed in the name of all Americans and with the use of their tax dollars.

    Wake up all of you good people who say you care. Wake all of you people who profess to believe in god. You are remiss if you are just another face in the apathetic crowd that idly stands by acting like a spectator at a sporting event. The lament of “But, what can I do,” is no longer valid. You have a mouth and I assume a brain to go with it. Say something. Call the creepy representative that you voted for and tell him/her that they are doing a piss poor job. Make some waves, even if they are just ripples.

  6. One doesn’t know whether to laugh or cry. In one case the US has dropped its gross hypocrisy and is baldly stating that it has the right (might makes right) to kill innocent people along with those suspected of being foes and no one can do anything about it. On the other hand, when Obama was killing innocents like there was no tomorrow, he at least paid lip service (hypocritical as that was) to preventing the deaths of innocents. The latter at least made Americans feel as it their nation actually was decent country.

  7. great news! this should help.

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