Posted by Thomas Nephew on October 24th, 2012
“The problem with the drone is it’s like your lawn mower,” said Bruce Riedel, a former CIA analyst and Obama counterterrorism adviser. “You’ve got to mow the lawn all the time. The minute you stop mowing, the grass is going to grow back.”
– Plan for hunting terrorists signals U.S. intends to keep adding names to kill lists (Miller, WaPo, 10/23/12)
“An right now the level of torture talk has gone from ‘Torture: Bad!’ to ‘Torture: Bad, But Not As Bad As Saddam Hussein’ to ‘Torture: Bad, But What About Ticking Bombs?’ to ‘Torture: Bad, But Not Necessarily Proof That The People Who Ordered Torture Are Bad’ to ‘Torture: We Still Talkin Bout Torture?’ to ‘Torture: Bad?’ An before we get to ‘Torture: Sorta Like Mowin Your Lawn’ I think we should try as hard as we can to wake up.”
– wake up (Fafblog!, 7/10/04)
That sure looks like a big swing and a miss for Fafblog now, doesn’t it.
The CIA is urging the White House to approve a significant expansion of the agency’s fleet of armed drones, a move that would extend the spy service’s decade-long transformation into a paramilitary force, U.S. officials said.
The proposal by CIA Director David H. Petraeus would bolster the agency’s ability to sustain its campaigns of lethal strikes in Pakistan and Yemen and enable it, if directed, to shift aircraft to emerging al-Qaeda threats in North Africa or other trouble spots, officials said.
If approved, the CIA could add as many as 10 drones, the officials said, to an inventory that has ranged between 30 and 35 over the past few years.
The outcome has broad implications for counterterrorism policy and whether the CIA gradually returns to being an organization focused mainly on gathering intelligence, or remains a central player in the targeted killing of terrorism suspects abroad.
– CIA seeks to expand drone fleet, officials say (Miller, WaPo, 10/18/12)
Because otherwise what’s the sense of having drones and the CIA to kill people in secret with? (Secret from us, the people in the vicinity are pretty clear about it.)
Pretty soon they’ll have it all streamlined to where there’s a “drone strike” app, and they can do it all on their iPhone on the Beltway: get approval tweet, pinch, swipe, “#4″ is gone, poof.* Of course “#4″ will turn out to actually just be a bus driver, the bus just had two 20 year olds and eight kids, the tipster wanted the route, the reward money, and payback for that injured goat from last year. “3 militants dead.” And one of the dead kid’s brothers grows up to be Mohammed Atta II — who knows, maybe even ‘better.’
Do be sure to click “like” if you think single moms raise good presidents, there’s no reason it couldn’t happen someday. Me, I think this is fucked up beyond all recognition. Sure glad I phoned, canvassed, and voted for Obama in 2008; after all, he reads Augustine and Thomas Aquinas, and makes sure people know about it too.
* Or maybe the drones will just decide on their own.