Subject: Drones and Ted Rall
Maybe the fact that you can`t get people to agree with you on this should tell you something.
There is no "fact" that I can't get people to agree with me.
People who can't answer a very simple question DO agree with me,
but they just can't bring themselves to face the damn facts.
BTW, Obama agrees with me.
The issue most responders are having is the notion that drones strikes don't equate to a clean
surgical elimination of the threat. Numerous people have tried to explain that you are far too
trusting of government pronouncements that targets are "terrorists". Your typical response is that
argument assumes the government can't have good intelligence, which doesn't address the point.
It's not a belief that the government is never right, it the fact that we know drone strikes have killed
numerous people that are not terrorists. Alwaki, the American who was the first known citizen recipient
of a drone strike, was guilty of giving speeches - he didn't make bombs, he didn't blow up airplanes.
His 14 year old son and teenage cousin, also killed by drone strike, also did not build bombs or blow
up airplanes. The government normally claims any adult male killed as collateral damage in a drone
strike is a terrorist - go ahead and believe that if you want, but what about all the women and children
killed? The government doesn't even try to claim they're terrorists. It's okay to kill them in your opinion?
I don't like it when innocent people die.
That goes for Americans on planes, too.
Have you answered the question that people are scared to answer?
The topic isn't "Should we kill innocent women and chilcren."
The topic is "How do we stop the people trying to bring down our planes?"
This is where you insert your specious argument that to raise these concerns is to advocate doing
nothing and letting Americans get blown up on airplanes. Drone strikes are not the only option here.
We could institute airport security as the Israeli's do - they don't do drone strikes, and they don't
have airplanes getting blown up. This is in addition to all the other countries that don't use drones
and don't have airplane bombings. The point here is that you're presenting a false choice, rather
than answering people's arguments.
You remind me of the guy who says, "Since the black box always survive the airplane crash,
why don't we make the entire plane of that material?"
America must have 500 times more flights than Israel.
We must ship 1000 times more freight than Israel.
We can't do everything like Israel does.
Another option is to address the root causes of terrorism (usually caused by poverty, imperialism,
tyrannical leadership, religious fundamentalism, etc). We will never be able to kill all the "terrorists"
especially when we use a method that indiscriminately kills many people who are not terrorists,
and in effect creates terrorists out of people outraged by the attacks. You probably know that terrorism
is an assymetrical response by people who feel powerless to affect their perceived adversary with a
more direct tactic. I can't think of a better way to create a new generation of terrorists than to continue
a policy of targeted murder (without due process) carried out by flying robot. Maybe we should stop
supporting tyrannical monarchies in the middle east because they too hate Persians. Maybe we should
drop the being at war with Islam rhetoric. Maybe we should punish corporations for exploiting workers
in the region. Maybe we should stop being so subserviant to conservatives in Israel.
Yes, it would be great if we could go back in time and do everything differently.
It would also be great if magic worked but we have to live in this world.
To summarize - drones strikes bad:
1. No due process, no proof we're targetting "terrorists"
2. Lots of innocents are killed in the strikes
3. Counter-productive response, as it creates more terrorists than it can kill.
4. Other options are available - the alternative is not letting airplanes blow up.
So, besides your Israel idea that won't work, what's your answer?
Do we pray?
Some liberals think doing nothing is the answer to our terrorism problems.
I disagree with them.
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