The CIA Will Keep Killing Civilians With Drone Strikes Because The ‘Rules’ For Drone Strikes Aren’t Actually Rules

by Tim Cushing, from Tech Dirt

Here’s what drone killing oversight looks like:

About once a month, staff members of the congressional intelligence committees drive across the Potomac River to C.I.A. headquarters in Langley, Va., and watch videos of people being blown up.

As part of the macabre ritual the staff members look at the footage of drone strikes in Pakistan and other countries and a sampling of the intelligence buttressing each strike, but not the internal C.I.A. cables discussing the attacks and their aftermath.

So, the CIA holds a monthly snuff filmfest for intelligence oversight committees. Figuring moving pictures are worth thousands of words, it then withholds the thousands of words justifying its decision to carry out a strike. Despite this process being clearly aimed at minimizing objections and questions, intelligence committee heads still offer their support of the program and the agency running it, even when they clearly don’t trust the CIA on other issues.

When Ms. Feinstein was asked in a meeting with reporters in 2013 why she was so sure she was getting the truth about the drone program while she accused the C.I.A. of lying to her about torture, she seemed surprised.

“That’s a good question, actually,” she said.

Cognitive dissonance has long been a feature of intelligence committee leadership. Sen. Feinstein has now done this twice — the other time being her outrage over the CIA spying on her staffers, while simultaneously offering her support for NSA programs that performed similar functions…

[read more here]

Report documents carnage of US drone war in Yemen

by Niles Williamson, WSWS

A report released this week by the Open Society Justice Initiative (OSJI), titled “Death by Drone: Civilian Harm Caused by U.S. Targeted Killings in Yemen,” documents the deadly carnage inflicted by Hellfire missile strikes in US President Barack Obama’s criminal drone war in Yemen.

Continue reading

Saudi Terror-Bombing Massacres Dozens of Yemeni Schoolchildren

by Stephen Lendman

Saudi warplanes target US intelligence-designated sites. Civilian men, women and children are considered fair game. They suffer most in all wars.
Deliberately targeting them is longstanding US policy – a shocking war crime by any standard.
Tuesday was the latest example. Reports indicate Saudi warplanes struck a populated Ma’rib area. A local source said dozens of defenseless schoolchildren were massacred in cold blood.
The exact number of dead and wounded isn’t known. The source indicated massive Saudi terror-bombing killed dozens.
Yemeni army spokesman Col. Sharif Luqman said:
“Saudi attacks have left over 2,265 housing units totally demolished.”
“The US is with the Saudis, but God is with the Yemenis.” He promised a crushing response, adding:
“The Yemeni people will fight to the last drop of their blood to safeguard the sovereign independence of their country.”

[read more here]

NYT Publishes Op Ed from Our Ousted Puppet in Yemen Calling for More Saudi Bombing

by Scott Creighton

Abdu Rabbu Mansour Hadi, our puppet dictator in Yemen, winner of a one candidate “election” (orchestrated by Hillary Clinton and the US State Department) and long time Vice President of the former puppet dictator President Ali Abdullah Saleh (since 1994 when he transitioned from his position as Minister of Defense), has penned an Op Ed for the “liberal” yellow journalism outlet, the New York Times, in which he calls for more bombing of his own people from the Saudi/US led coalition of the willing.

My country, Yemen, is under siege by radical Houthi militia forces whose campaign of horror and destruction is fueled by the political and military support of an Iranian regime obsessed with regional domination. There is no question that the chaos in Yemen has been driven by Iran’s hunger for power and its ambition to control the entire region…

Operation Decisive Storm, the campaign by a coalition of nations led by Saudi Arabia, is coming to the aid of Yemen at the request of my government. If the Houthis do not withdraw and disarm their militia and rejoin the political dialogue, we will continue to urge the coalition to continue its military campaign against them

We will need continued international support to ensure military might on the battlefield now. And we will need assistance for our civil institutions once the fighting has stopped, to return my government to leadership in the capital, Sana” Mansour Hadi, via the “liberal” New York Times

Saleh had been the US-backed dictator of Yemen effectively since 1978. He previously served as “President” of North Yemen from 1978 until unification with South Yemen in 1990 at which time he became “President” of Yemen and remained as such until a popular uprising, aided by the Houthi movement from the north, ousted him from power as well. Continue reading

Yemen: At least six civilians burn to death in further airstrikes overnight

from Amnesty International

There is growing evidence that the Saudi Arabian-led military coalition is failing to take precautions to prevent civilian deaths amid ongoing airstrikes on sites around Yemen, Amnesty International said, as it confirmed that at least six civilians, including four children, were among 14 people who burned to death in further strikes early this morning.

The attacks, carried out at around 2 AM in Ibb governorate, were apparently targeting a Huthi checkpoint as well as fuel supplies along the road between Yareem and Dhammar. The dead included four children and two women, as well as eight men, but it is unknown if any of those were fighters. At least 31 others were hospitalized with burns and shrapnel wounds.

“After several days of often intense bombardment in several areas across Yemen, it is becoming increasingly apparent that the Saudi Arabian-led coalition is turning a blind eye to civilian deaths and suffering caused by its military intervention,” said Said Boumedouha, Deputy Director of Amnesty International’s Middle East and North Africa Programme.

[read more here]

President Peace Prize Uses Navy to Bomb People of Yemen… Again

(In Dec. of 2009, President Peace Prize (P3 for short) authorized the use of a cruise missile strike from a US warship that killed 22 children in one shot. Now he’s launched more.)

Press TV

The United States Navy has reportedly joined Saudi Arabia’s airstrikes against Yemen, according to a military source.

US warships took part in an air assault against Yeminis on Monday, the source has told a Russian media outlet.

“American ships participated in yesterday’s airstrikes on Sanaa, specifically, they launched a cruise missile on a strengthened missile brigade,” the source told Sputnik on Tuesday.

The airstrike began after Saudi warplanes failed to hit weapons depots belonging to Ansarullah revolutionaries of the Houthi movement, the source noted.

[read more here]

At least 37 killed in Saudi raids on dairy plant in Yemen

(Go here to see a collection of photos detailing the devastation being cause by Saudi Arabia in Yemen)

from Press TV

At least 37 people have been killed during a Saudi airstrike on a dairy plant in western Yemen.

The overnight raid in Al Hudaydah Province on Tuesday also left dozens injured.

According to medics, part of the factory was destroyed and rescue teams were looking for survivors under the rubble

[read more here]

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