Even during testing, drones only hit within the expected region, 50% of the time, and in reality this percentage could be lowered by uncontrollable forces, such as weather (Chris Cole, 2014). Drones may have better accuracy and lower civilian kill rate than some other weapons, but that does not justify why drones are safe and should be used limitlessly. With people falsely persuaded that drones are “risk free”, the military is less likely to send lethal force, resulting in the United States dragging a longer and less aggressive warfare (Chris Cole, 2014)
Opponents argue that by removing one of the key restraints to warfare – the risk to one’s own forces – unmanned systems make undertaking armed attacks too easy and will make war more likely. Evidence is beginning to emerge that it is the persistent presence of UAVs sitting over remote villages and towns simply looking for ‘targets of opportunity’ that may be leading to civilian casualties. The CIA oversees drone strikes as part of counterterrorism operations, but US officials refuse to discuss the program publicly. According to a tally by the nonpartisan New America Foundation, since 2004 there have been more than 260 US drone strikes in Pakistan, which the foundation estimates killed between 1,600 and 2,500 people. Not everyone feels comfortable with all this. Critics say that the legal and
It has been proven, and supported by facts that older, and/or more traditional methods of war such as mortars, or bombs do a larger amount of collateral damage historically, and in modern warfare. Since the September llth, terrorist attacks in 2001 drone strikes have only claimed 8-17% of civilian casualties[Source J]. Speaking of civilian casualties throughout the course of other wars such as World War II 40-67% of fatalities were civilian, and
Drones already carry a negative, political connotation. The breaches in sovereignty are a major political issue for involved countries. Yemen, Afghanistan, and Pakistan are examples of the United States’ willingness to conduct military strikes without the consent of the governing body within the country. Furthermore, targeted killings are essentially a means for assassinations, which were prohibited under the Reagan administration. However, this fact is abated, as the killing of Anwar Al-Awlaki (US Citizen) demonstrated. Given all this information, would the usage of US drones in Iraq only perpetuate more violence, or bring stability to the region? This report will seek to answer this question. Utilizing an interview with an Associate Professor of Homeland Security at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University (ERAU), Professor Bonner, as a primary source of research, along with secondary sources from accredited cites, this report will explore the dynamics of the drone program as it pertains to the current situation in Iraq.
In President Obama’s speech on drone policy, given on May 23, 2013 in Washington D.C., he asserts, “dozens of highly skilled al Qaeda commanders, trainers, bomb makers and operatives have been taken off the battlefield... Simply put, those [drone} strikes have saved lives.” Many American’s support this view. According to a July 18, 2013 Pew Research survey, 61% of Americans supported drone strikes in Pakistan, Yemen, and Somalia (Drake). However, this belief that drone strikes make the United States safer by decimating terrorist networks around the world is widely contested. An opposing viewpoint is that these strikes create more terrorist than they kill. There is a common misperception that drones are precise, killing only the target and entourage. According to a meta-study of drone strikes, between 8 to 17% of all people killed are civilians (Sing). People who see their loved ones injured or killed in drone
drones. This strongly compares to the percentage of civilian deaths that occurred during World War 11, which was estimated at 40 – 67% of total war casualties.
Warfare is an ever evolving aspect to human nature. Throughout human history, man has always invented new ways to kill one another. With the new current war on terrorism this idea still holds true. With recent advances in robotics, mankind has developed a new type of warfare. This new type of asymmetric warfare is fought against individuals that do not wear a uniform or have a sponsored country. This condition has made for a new type of weapon system to fight this type of warfare. These new weapons to fight the current war are called drones. “These drones provide a real time solution for the new faster paced warfare” (Rienhart). There is a lot of debate on the current use of drones in warfare and if they should be used to kill. Some of the debated topics include: success rate, civilian casualties, legality, cost and the lack of human boots on the ground. The drone has provided an answer to the new high tempo of the current war and is having “great success on disabling the terrorist networks around the Globe” (Rienhart). This is why our country must continue to use and develop our drone program to stay ahead of our enemies and take advantage of this new weapon.
To develop the Department of Defense’s (DoD) position on the reevaluation of the operation and regulations regarding drone warfare. This paper addresses the importance of understanding the risks involved with drone strikes, to include the important violations of international law, the consequential casualties incurred during the strikes and the overall moral issues at hand.
The main unknown and controversial discussion surrounding drone attacks is the ambiguity that coincides with who is made victim by these strikes. One of the main purposes of the military is distinguishing between combatants and innocent bystanders and as drone
Furthermore, the study revealed that civilian casualties ranged between 18 and 26 per cent of the deaths in Pakistan (Boyle, 2013). Additionally, “President Obama launched more than six times as many drone strikes as President Bush did throughout his eight years in office” (Boyle, 2013, p. 2). As President Obama stated in his speech on May 2013, drones strikes are lethal, accurate, and extremely successful against Al-Qaeda’s High-Value Targets (HVTs). As the statistics show, numerous HVTs like Sheikh Fateh al Masri, Mustafa Abu Yazid, Qari Mohammad Zafar, and Baitullah Mehsud were killed by the drones (Barnidge, 2011). Moreover, it has eliminated “more than half of the top twenty HVTs. It has done so without endangering US pilots” (Plaw & Fricker, 2012, p. 346).
After 9/11, the U.S started to implement policies intended to combat terrorism in hopes of preventing further attacks and bring those who were involved to justice. One such policy that the U.S started was to implement the heavy use of drones- unmanned aircraft capable of bombing specific targets. These drones would be controlled by a pilot remotely from the U.S, thousands of miles from where the strikes were taking place. The U.S used these drones to assassinate suspects who were believed to have been linked to terrorism as well as various targets that were deemed to be associated with terrorism, such as weapons factories. Currently, however, there is a debate on the legality, morality, and effectiveness of drones. One side sees the drones as effective at destroying targets while at the same time, minimizing civilian casualties. On the other hand, the other side believes that drones are reliable for
Every drone strike is a situation in determining whether the targets are civilians or military personal. There are multiple cases where many air strike victims were misinterpreted to being either enemy militia or target suspects due to a drone’s lack of displaying a clear image of its surroundings and a limited angle view
In the article “Why Drones Work: The Case for Washington’s Weapon of Choice” by Daniel L. Byman many topics about the use and opinions of U.S. attack drones. U.S. attack drones are used in place of full raids or large bombings to take out terrorists. Most of the they the cost of an attack is greater than the drone itself. Many people have mixed feelings about the drones, but many people think that they cause many civilian casualties.
Empirical studies of targeted killings and civilian casualties in counterinsurgency and counterterrorism show that drone strikes may obtain either of the following two outcomes:
Since the use of drones has been used on a much larger scale in the United States military, there has been some skepticism regarding the ethical implication of such machines in recent years (Source H). While 62% of Americans approve of the use of drone strikes other countries are in strong opposition of the handling of drones, such as China and Japan. However recent statistics have shown that drones execute fewer civilians than any other military weapon to date. Not only are they cheaper than traditional aircraft, but they also significantly decrease the risk of soldiers developing PTSD over the course of their service. (Source J).