US Officials Claim Drone Attacks Are Legal And In Self Defense

Obama Drone AttackThere is an outcry by the people for a long time now concerning the continuous and dramatically increased drone attacks in the ungoverned tribal regions near the Afghan-Pakistan border. The Obama Administration has been criticized by human rights groups across the world for it. Some international law experts consider drone attacks to be illegal assassinations.

Pakistani officials have returned from America claiming that strategic partnership dialogs were triumphant but within a day the Obama administration has for the first time laid out its legal underlying principle for drone strikes. United States has justified the Central Investigation Agency (CIA) operated missile hits mentioning it as the right to “self-defense” under international law. During a conference of the American Society of International Law, State Department’s legal advisor Harold Koh argues that the missile hits were justified.

“The United States is in “an armed conflict” with Al-Qaeda, the Taliban and its affiliates as a result of the September 11 attacks, and may use force consistent with its inherent right to self-defense under the international law”.

In other words America has the legal right for killing innocent people with Drones wherever they have the doubt of Al Qaeda or Taliban presence because they are the enemy of America post 9/11. What about more than 1200 innocent Pakistanis assassination till now as a result of US justified drone attacks? Who is responsible for it? What will be the US opinion if Pakistan army starts to respond the drone attacks as a self defense?

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) has recently filed a lawsuit against US President Barack Obama, demanding legal basis for America’s deadly drone attacks overseas. It is worth mentioning that many CIA officers might have to face prosecution for war crimes, due to the U.S. government’s refusal to offer legal grounds for the drone raids in Pakistan. International community was impatient with Washington ignoring the slur of the CIA’s bombing raids in Pakistan, Afghanistan and other parts of the world. In order to avoid the prosecution the US has come up with the justification.

Every country on the globe should respect each others soverngity. With power comes great responsibilties too but unfortunately not many are cpable to deal with it. It is high time for Pakistan and its government to learn to say NO.

Image: South Asia Speaks

16 thoughts on “US Officials Claim Drone Attacks Are Legal And In Self Defense”

  1. The argument was never to justify the drone attacks within our territory; however the point remains that could we ensure that our land will not be used for terrorist activities?

    Sovereignty comes with responsibility and I strongly believe that we are now more responsible state which is why U.S. has announced to provide Pakistan with surveillance drones.

  2. Sadia is right , please let us stop being emotional and be calm like Japanese , we need to look inside ourselves , do we not ?

  3. @Hina! Pakistan Army has indeed conducted the operation in a very professional manner and we have achieved a lot in this war. That is why Pakistan has secured surveillance drones which will enhance the capability in intelligence gathering.
    As far as your argument is concerned that predator drones must not be operational in Pakistan I have said that these attacks were crucial as we cannot target high profile terrorists by conventional means.

    Ideally Pakistan should be operating these strikes but our track record is not very good when it comes to issues like transfer of technology!

  4. @Hira @Sadia

    Y I feel that you both almost comments about the same thing and more or less same argument??

    DRONES should not be operated in Pakistani territory by US. Whatever they are achieving could also be done by our own resources like recent successful Army operations.

  5. Hira: I agree with you completely.

    Sadia: “..also a global threat…” Bullseye. Very well said.

    Tayab: No sane person on earth likes the idea of killing innocents, or “collateral damage.”

    Hina: Thanks. Just a thought–I believe the drones pick up phone conversations and they are analyzed. I don’t see how the US could analyze conversations in Urdu or Arabic or Pashtun without the assistance of native language speakers who understand the little nuances, which would mean to me that Pakistan and the US are definitely together in the project. I think General Khan’s link to the Pak Military website has a link to a page or two about Pakistan’s drone program, which, while it may have been a bit behind that of the US, is probably catching up really quickly, so Pakistan can better take care of its own anti-terrorism chores. I don’t know if Pak’s drones are armed or not. I agree with you that it’s better that Pakistan do it, and understand your very natural and patriotic resentment that foreign forces are on the ground in Pakistan. If you hope it’s a temporary situation that’s better ended sooner than later, so do I.


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