U.S. Labor and Politics

Drones, Technology and the Quest for Peace

Excerpts from an Article By George Damasevitz

Since 9/11, the U.S. administrations have embraced drones as the weapon of choice to fight the global war on terror since terrorists have no national identity and have migrated throughout the world, notably the Middle East and eastern Africa. This has resulted in a program of assassination of suspected terrorists, including U.S. citizens, along with the risks and consequences of striking the wrong target. The international legal ramifications of conducting assassinations in another country’s airspace are grave and many suspect that our national image will be tarnished resulting in additional acts of retribution not only by terrorists, but by the sovereign nations that may inadvertently be harboring them. Thus it is easy to see how the frenetic and exponential growth of the war industry and drones in particular may easily result in the destabilization of our wellbeing.

What is needed is a foreign policy that takes into consideration the equal rights of others on this planet and national support for this policy. Those who argue that terrorists are envious of our democracy and freedom are living in an antiquated and delusional world. Our democracy has gone the way of the Edsel and what freedom remains seems to be exclusively the right of the wealthy, who are free to buy elections and benefit from legislation designed to enslave the real workers of this country.

Those interested in rectifying the injustice of our government and its foreign policy could begin to examine the root causes of global conflicts in light of the right of every human on this planet to live a life free from oppression. To do so we must swim upstream until we can find the source of the political sewage that pollutes our democracy. This will not be easy as there are many tributaries in which we can become confused and strong currents to push us off course. While tiring, our strength must come from an undying belief in justice and the rights of every person to live in freedom. As a result of this struggle, many dark corners of our plutocracy will be illuminated. The conclusions drawn would indicate that our nation is at risk of becoming a fascist state.

For instance, the implementation of drone assassinations without congressional oversight is being managed by executive order. These orders frequently are performed by private contractors employed as mercenary soldiers. Unlike U.S. soldiers, contractors are exempt from the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) and are not being held accountable for crimes committed by executive order. Connecting the dots on this page suggests that the president, who is beholden to those corporations and individuals, who financed his campaign, can order assassinations of putative “terrorists” regardless of their nationality, even if they are U.S. citizens. This should strike fear and terror into the hearts of everyone who truly cherishes freedom. A targeted individual is no longer entitled to a trial. At best they may be indefinitely warehoused in Guantanamo or at worse killed by assassins, perhaps flying drones out of the U.S.

—August 18, 2012