Letter to the Editor: Drone warfare nothing but mass murder

Matt Kovac

Although one might not know it from reading Matt Zeitlin’s gushing defense of drone warfare in last Thursday’s Daily, the policy he so lovingly details is nothing but mass murder.

Zeitlin applauds killing “terrorists,” but he appears unaware that the U.S. does not target only al-Qaeda operatives or members of the supposedly affiliated Taliban. Under the rubric of “insurgency” or “militancy,” anyone resisting the American occupation – that is to say, American aggression – is marked for death. To defend one’s home is “terrorism.” In its death-by-drone policy, the U.S. government draws no distinction. Tellingly, neither does Zeitlin.

Similarly unmentioned is the fact that many of those killed by drones have no connection to militants whatsoever. The intelligence behind these attacks often comes from collaborators who are motivated by financial incentives or hope to curry favor with occupation forces. Their information is unreliable at best and malicious at worst, intended to settle personal scores.

Even when militant residences are located, militants are not the only people harmed by drone-fired missiles. Innocents are killed or maimed, and the shock wave from the blast often demolishes houses in the vicinity, crushing neighboring families to death. The Bureau of Investigative Journalism has confirmed at least 168 children killed in U.S. drone bombings. The actual number is likely far higher.

When Zeitlin writes of drones “raining fire over the skies,” such colorful euphemisms are meant to obscure his advocacy of mass murder. It is a ruse that should fool no one.

Matthew Kovac

Medill Sophomore, Class of 2014

Editor-in-Chief, The Protest Magazine