Friday, June 15, 2012

Leftists want to ban UAVs (unmanned aerial vehicles)

Many Leftists want to ban armed "drones," claiming that they make more enemies than they kill, and that they kill civilians--that using them is a war crime. And that we're letting a genie out a bottle, one that we'll regret having released later.

First, they aren't drones. Drones are target aircraft using for shooting practise in the military. They're UAVs. Calling them drones has a negative connotation--as if they're useless blunderers.

Second, war makes enemies. What's the alternative? Sending police into the hinterlands of Pakistan and Yemen to arrest the malefactors? They'd never reach their target. Military ground invasion? How many civilians would that kill? The only practical alternative to UAVs attacking these targets is to leave these targets alone. Let them attack our troops, our civilians (which they do regularly), then retreat to their safe havens. Let them plan and execute another 9/11 unless our purely defensive efforts succeed.

These aren't bank robbers we're chasing. These are members of a worldwide nonstate movement that has been at war with America since the 1990s (as of the first World Trade Center attack). Just because they aren't part of a territory-holding government--and aren't all part of a solid top-down hierarchy--and aren't trying to occupy territory--doesn't mean it isn't war.

And it's an especially pernicious war, because this enemy isn't solely focused on our soldiers. This enemy delights in killing American civilians. Their interest is in waging total war against us, only limited by their capabilities, not their intent.

It is absolutely true that our UAV attacks in Pakistan have enraged a majority of Pakistani citizens, who ignore the death and havoc created by Islamofascists within Pakistan, and by Islamofascists sallying forth from Pakistan to kill people--mostly innocent civilians--elsewhere, especially Afghanistan and India. Those terrorists are, after all, their terrorists, professing the same religion. Attacks from us offend their nationalistic tribalism.

That's unfortunate, but that's not a sufficient reason to desist. Again, what's the alternative?

"Even one innocent person being killed is too many," the leftists say. This is looniness by people who have only known peace in their own land--who know nothing of war. And a farmer angry at his son being killed may be willing to plant an IED to kill Americans, but he can't step into the sandals of a dead master bomb maker and/or effective propagandist and leader (such as Anwar Al-Alaki).  The attempts on us since 9/11 have been generally amateurish and sporadic. It seems reasonable to think that knocking off most of their effective leaders and experts--along with their replacements as they come along--might have something to do with that.

Statements like "even one innocent" are just ritualistic incantations of the bumper sticker slogans of one's side. They aren't based on actual knowledge--yet they're stated as being exactly as factual as saying that water freezes below 32 degree Fahrenheit. They invoke a lofty morality that ignores the brutal consequences of such tender-heartedness. They're warm hearted (in a holier than thou sort of way) but soft-headed.

If the killing of an Al-Qaeda leader with his wives and children--though UAV pilots will loiter for hour after hour over a target waiting for the terrorist to be separated from his family so they can get a clean shot at just the bad guy--if killing his whole family with him prevents, say, downing a 747 full of passengers over, say, downtown Boston--show me the morality of having all those people die.

To add insult to illogic, many leftist also launch into diatribes against "videogame warfare" where the UAV pilots are emotionally detached, when in fact they usually see their targets far longer and better--along with those around them--than pilots of piloted warcraft see.

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