The News alleges US drones killed 123 civilians, three al-Qaeda men in January; Other Sources categorize some ‘Civilians’ as Militants

US drones killed 123 civilians, three al-Qaeda men in January

The Pakistani newspaper, The News alleges that:

“Afghanistan-based US predators carried out a record number of 12 deadly missile strikes in the tribal areas of Pakistan in January 2010, of which 10 went wrong and failed to hit their targets, killing 123 innocent Pakistanis. The remaining two successful drone strikes killed three al-Qaeda leaders, wanted by the Americans.

The rapid increase in the US drone attacks in the Pakistani tribal areas bordering Afghanistan can be gauged from the fact that only two such strikes were carried out in January 2009, which killed 36 people. The highest number of drone attacks carried out in a single month in 2009 was six, which were conducted in December last year. . .”

But other sources speak of US drone attacks regularly killing “militants,”— GEO TV counts 9 dead since late Friday. So The News coding of all the non-al-Qaeda killed as “civilians” seems disingenuous. Some proportion of them were armed Pashtun guerrillas.

What is indisputable is that the number of drone strikes is way up in January in the wake of the suicide bombing on the CIA’s Forward Operating Base Campbell.

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5 Responses

  1. I cannot imagine what it must be like for the peoples of this region to be living underneath a de facto 3rd-Dimension military occupier's robot killing machines ~ the constant, literal droning sound of their turboprop engines (not unlike the German 'Buzz Bombs' over London during the 1940's). And then the sudden terror of that whoosh BOOM! sound, as a HellFire missile strikes some mud-brick compound in the village, its report echo-ing throughout the otherwise pastoral valley. "Who got it this time?" would be a perfectly human response; however gruesome, everyone would rush to the scene to see for themselves. "It's Omar's place!" Of course, everyone would know Omar ~ after all it's a little village. As well they would know his eldest son, who loved football and Western music, and Omar's wife, their daughters, and his old mother, who also lived with the family. All dead now. Their bodies torn asunder, body parts flung every which where, hanging from trees and strewn all over the neighborhood; blood, now splotches black as india ink soaking into the sand. Like everyone else you're frozen, speechless as the dust drifts downwind. All quiet now — until, still overhead:


  2. .
    I was under the impression that the drones flew so high that they couldn't be heard.

  3. This system of drone bombers achieves three (presumed) goals of US military: [1] no US lives immediately threatened, because no "boots on the ground" [2] very expensive, so lots of money spent for MIC-complex [3] more enemies produced, so more likelihood of actual terrorism and more possibility of predicting and fighting against more terrorism.

    The US is presently preparing to prosecute some people for masterminding the 9-11 flights. Who would the villagers prosecute (if they could) for masterminding the drone attacks generally and for aiming the particular drone attacks which hit civilians?

  4. I understand that more than 2,400 civilians were killed last year, the deadliest for Afghan civilians since the fall of the Taliban regime in late 2001, according to the UN.

    The United Nations announced that 346 children were killed in Afghanistan last year, more than half of them by NATO forces, mostly in airstrikes.

    131 of these children were killed in airstrikes, while another 22 were killed in nighttime raids by international special forces.

    link to

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