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Numbers in Obama’s Drone Deaths Report Just Don’t Add Up


Numbers in Obama’s Drone Deaths Report Just Don’t Add Up

Marjorie Cohn

More than three years after President Barack Obama pledged to be transparent about the United States’ lethal drone program, his administration has finally come forward with an accounting of the numbers of civilian deaths that resulted from drone strikes between Jan. 20, 2009, and Dec. 31, 2015. But they only cover airstrikes “outside areas of active hostilities,” which encompasses Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia and Libya. Civilian deaths in Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria are not included in the report.


116 civilian deaths, 1000 civilian deaths. Is there a number we should be comfortable with? You have a child; that child is blown to bits. That’s only 1. Compassion watered down with data.


Of course they do not add up. This is not about transparency. This is not about trying to determine the number of civilains killed over “terrorists”. This is about conditioning the population to accept the premise that there two types of persons murdered by the US Military and Government , the unfortunate bystander caught in the blast even as the US implemented all the measures it could to prevent such, and the “Terrorist” deemed a threat to the very existence of the USA. In doing this the Government wants the people to accept the premise that the USA is justified and morally correct when it goes abroad to murder people the world over.

If the US Government will not release the names of the persons they murder and the justifications for why they were murdered the only conclusion one can make is they do not KNOW who they are killing and do not have a reason for that killing that can stand up to Public scrutiny. The persons they murder are not “guilty” of anything that would stand the smell test and thus by definition have to be deemed civilians.

The words Militant and Combatant and Terrorist are doublespeak much like they called the war on Libya a “Kinetic Military action” and much like they call the murder of civilians “Collateral damage”.


Connect these dots:

  1. What “Gradual Accommodation” to the unthinkable means

  2. “First they came for…”

  3. The frog boiled so slowly that he doesn’t recognize his dire straits until it’s too late

Combine with this:

"Like his predecessor, Obama defines the whole world as his battlefield, reserving for himself the role of judge, jury and executioner. Compliance with due process (arrest and fair trial), which the U.S. Constitution guarantees all persons, not just U.S. citizens, has not been a priority in the Obama administration’s “war on terror.”

The truth is, gradual accommodation to the empire bypassing all rules of law, the presumption of innocence, the right to a trial, etc. means that ALL citizens are potential targets, including U.S. citizens.

Ms. Cohn’s assessment of the Government’s Numbers Game brings to mind the on-the-ground witness testimony of Kathy Kelly. She’s explained what the SOUND of drones means, and how this looming threat of terror causes Post Traumatic Stress Disorder in children.

Who can go outside and feel safe to play when too often it’s a wedding party or a Grandmother and son collecting wood that are hit?

I HATE what’s happened to our nation along with the mocking of the rule of law, the forfeiture of Constitutional protections, the evisceration of Civil Liberties, and the net losses of decency, compassion, and genuine forms of accountability.

The 911 event was a MAJOR factor in the dissolution of so much. With the MSM acting as witting accomplice.


How accurate would the drone death figures need to be? How would it be possible determine the accuracy of any figures provided? How many deaths resulted from US drones during the Bush administration? And at this late stage in this administration, what do you propose doing about the next administration’s lethal use of drones?

Still, as far as the figures go, I would suggest asking Hillary Clinton who, having served as Sec. of State (2009 to 2013), would surely have those figures.


You’ve made some good points, DHFabian. G. W. Bush wasn’t trustworthy, neither is Obama, and, if either Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump become the next POTUS, they won’t be trustworthy, either.