Speaking Event: Challenging the Drone Wars
Is Remote Controlled Killing the Future of U.S. War? The anti-war movement says no.
A conversation with
National Co-Coordinator, United National Antiwar Coalition (UNAC)
President of Veterans for Peace / Retired Commander, US Navy
Bay Area CodePink
Our three guests participated in the 31-member CodePink-initiated October, 2012 U.S. delegation to Pakistan to meet with Pakistani anti-drone activists and relatives of the hundreds of civilians murdered by U.S. drones. The delegates visited Karachi, Islamabad and Lahore. They were turned back as they approached Waziristan -- the province bordering Afghanistan -- by the Pakistan military.
"It was good to see The Washington Post calling in an editorial [“Drone war,” Nov. 2] for the U.S. government to bring its drone wars out of the shadows. But having just returned from Pakistan, where I saw the effects of drone warfare, I disagree with The Post’s characterization of drone aircraft as a more “humane way” to combat an irregular army.
"People we met from Waziristan talked about how drones, constantly hovering overhead, terrorize the local population. Parents fear sending their children to school; people are afraid to attend weddings, funerals or other community gatherings. They talked about widespread psychological trauma, especially among the children.
"The editorial also played down the extent of civilian casualties from drone attacks, mentioning “scores — maybe hundreds — of civilians being killed.” According to the Bureau of Investigative Journalism, whose count of drone-strike victims is widely acknowleged to be the most accurate, the total ranges from 546 to 1,105. The bureau recently examined The Post’s reporting and concluded that “the paper frequently omits credible reports of civilian deaths in US covert drone strikes.”
"Giving a more accurate picture of these deaths would give the public a better understanding of not only the tragic human costs of drone warfare but also why it is creating so much anti-American sentiment around the world." ~ Medea Benjamin, Co-Founder, Code Pink
Simultaneous live TV broadcast on Mid-Peninsula cable channel 27
Simultaneous live internet webcast at Community Media Center website (select channel 27)
Free and open to all. Wheelchair accessible.