Thursday, January 3, 2013

Drone strikes continue, but who are the casualties?

I've started to get in my inbox, as of this a.m., Foreign Policy's 'AfPak daily brief' and also the more general 'morning brief' (not sure I'll continue with the latter). Since I haven't been following the international news through other means as closely as I might, these roundups may be useful.

The 'AfPak brief' cites various news reports about a drone strike that killed "top Pakistani militant commander" Maulvi Nazir, who staged attacks on U.S./ISAF forces in Afghanistan. The brief mentions that this same strike also killed nine people in a house in S. Waziristan but says nothing about their identities. Also mentioned is a drone strike in N. Waziristan that "killed four people whose identities could not be verified." This sort of thing highlights how difficult it must be for those journalists and analysts who try to keep track of exactly who the drone strikes are killing, and underlines why there is no definitive count of civilian casualties.

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