White House officials and Barack Obama have admitted to not knowing who the unmanned drone was targeting when they killed those two civilians. It’s because usually drones target people who fit a profile, also known as a signature strike. People who “look like terrorists” are killed indiscriminately all of the time. I personally can’t even comprehend the terror people must face because of the fear of drones.
Despite all of the training and practice of weaseling their way out of potentially problematic situations, the presidency can’t squirm out of this one.
Today marks five years since the release of Collateral Murder– Video footage of a U.S. Apache helicopter firing upon civilians in Iraq. Taken from Wikileak’s YouTube video page: (the footage) shows Reuters journalist Namir Noor-Eldeen, driver Saeed Chmagh, and several others as the Apache shoots and kills them in a public square in Eastern Baghdad. They are apparently assumed to be insurgents. After the initial shooting, an unarmed group of adults and children in a minivan arrives on the scene and attempts to transport the wounded. They are fired upon as well. The official statement on this incident initially listed all adults as insurgents and claimed the US military did not know how the deaths ocurred. Wikileaks released this video with transcripts and a package of supporting documents on April 5th 2010