Yesterday, NPR ran a story about how some drone pilots are suffering from depression, in some cases at levels that affect their work performance. Some Americans find it psychologically difficult to kill people they don’t know on orders from above in the safety of an office in New Mexico or somewhere. Some even suffered Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. With these few, the audio report and the text suggested the issue was ethical because they are watching families for “sometimes months”: “They watch someone’s pattern of life, see people with their families, and then they can be ordered to shoot.” NPR framed this story as purely a matter of psychological trauma rather than conscience. And they never mentioned the fact that a drone commonly kills more than just the target, including children.
Soldiers don’t like being forced to be unjustified killers. That is simply not the American tradition. And when I write, “unjustified,” I’m not quoting pacifist propaganda, but the Obama Administration’s own propaganda! Over Thanksgiving, the Administration used another one of its mouthpieces, the New York Times, to admit that it in fact had no rules for deciding who to kill with these drones.
“Facing the possibility that President Obama might not win a second term, his administration accelerated work in the weeks before the election to develop explicit rules for the targeted killing of terrorists by unmanned drones, so that a new president would inherit clear standards and procedures, according to two administration officials. The matter may have lost some urgency after Nov. 6. But with more than 300 drone strikes and some 2,500 people killed by the Central Intelligence Agency and the military since Mr. Obama first took office, the administration is still pushing to make the rules formal and resolve internal uncertainty and disagreement about exactly when lethal action is justified.”
There you have it: our president is currently killing people without any kind of objective justification (including wounding and killing bystanders who are no threat to us). The fact that he didn’t want Romney to have that freedom shows that he knows what he is doing is wrong.
Amazingly, this was anticipated by the Gawker’s satirical jab at the administration, in which they asked Democrats if the thought Romney was ready for the kill list. The Democrats acted as if the question should not be taken seriously. But the Obama Administration knew better.
And then there is this gem:
“Mr. Obama and his advisers are still debating whether remote-control killing should be a measure of last resort against imminent threats to the United States, or a more flexible tool, available to help allied governments attack their enemies or to prevent militants from controlling territory.”
Keep in mind, none of this is the result of investigative reporting. This all comes from the Obama Administration. They want you to think they are having intelligent and ethical discussions and imply that our Commander-in-Chief is carefully balancing the considerations of the two sides.
It is all a palpable lie. Obama has already killed 2,500 people by what is obviously the “more flexible” principle.
The story says, “Mr. Obama did not want to leave an ‘amorphous’ program to his successor.” Translation: Obama is just fine killing people by an amorphous program. After all, he’s “the One.”
Conservatives feel some loyalty to drones because they started under Bush. But in four years Obama outnumbered Bush’s use of drones by over five to one. We are permitted to re-think a policy when we see how completely insane it has become.
Like any sociopath, Obama is quite capable of preaching against the crimes he enjoys committing:
“The president expressed wariness of the powerful temptation drones pose to policy makers. ‘There’s a remoteness to it that makes it tempting to think that somehow we can, without any mess on our hands, solve vexing security problems,’ he said.”
Our next Republican presidential candidate needs to restore respect for the constitution and stop the “secret” unilateral killings. A manual written by the White House for the White House is not enough. Our soldiers deserve better and so do the rest of us.