MIT professor and activist Noam Chomsky slammed U.S. President Barack Obama for using aerial drones to kill suspected terrorists.
In a video published by Al Jazeera English on Saturday, Chomsky said that a black activist had recounted a story in which a group of African American women visited the president following his inauguration in 2009. After the meeting, the disappointed women told the black activist, “this man has no moral center.”
“I think they’re right,” Chomsky said. “If you look at his policies, I think that is what they reveal. Just some nice rhetoric here and there. If you look at the actual policies, they’re pretty shocking. The drone assassination campaign is a perfectly good example. I mean, that’s just a global assassination campaign.”
Critics of the use of drone strikes against suspected terrorists in Pakistan and Yemen worry the practice violates international law and kills civilians.
The well-known leftist activist also downplayed Obama’s efforts to block Israel settlements into Palestinian territory. Though the Obama administration has repeatedly criticized Israel’s settlement activity, they had not imposed any actual penalties, unlike previous presidents, Chomsky said.
“In fact, Obama is actually the first president who hasn’t really imposed restrictions on Israel,” he added. Raw Story
Facts and Figures
The Obama administration has aggressively employed a fleet of drone aircraft to kill what Washington considers “suspected militants” in other countries, namely Pakistan, Yemen and Afghanistan.
In Pakistan, U.S. drone strikes have killed more than 2,800 civilians since 2004, according to Pakistani sources.
In Afghanistan, the U.S. has carried out more drone strikes in 2012 than it has during its eight-year-long air war in Pakistan, launching nearly 450 strikes and killing thousands while also reducing its air surveillance, according to RT.
Figures compiled by a Washington think tank show a drastic increase in the number of secret U.S. drone attacks in Yemen. Based on its compilation of reports in international media, the New America Foundation reported that U.S. drone strikes in Yemen rose from 18 in 2011 to 53 in 2012.
In what should come as no surprise to anyone following the unconscionable chronicle of the never-ending drone war, there is no word as to the identity of either the targets or the victims. The New American
“The number of ‘high-level’ militants killed as a percentage of total casualties is extremely low — estimated at just 2% [of deaths]”, according to a Stanford/NYU report.
In interviews with CNN and Fox, President Obama has consistently defended the fact that he orders drone strikes to assassinate people based on nothing more than his suspicion that they threaten U.S. national security.