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Are drone strikes in Yemen convincing its civilians that the U.S. government is the most dangerous terrorist?
The Libertarian Party calls for an immediate end to drone strikes in Yemen.
“Yemenis perceive the U.S. drones strikes, which are killing peaceful citizens, to be acts of terrorism,” said Geoffrey J. Neale, chair of the Libertarian National Committee. “At least in some respects, they are.”
“Terrorism” refers to acts of violence that are intended to instill fear and that deliberately target or disregard the safety of civilians.
“While instilling fear among the Yemeni population at large may not be President Obama’s goal, it is well known that drone strikes terrify civilians,” said Neale. “His drone war in Yemen is blatant disregard for human life.”
A senior Defense Ministry official in Yemen said on August 11 that U.S. drones killed nearly a dozen people believed to be innocent over the prior two weeks.
Drone strikes do little to remove terrorist threats against the United States. A Yemeni sheikh told the Christian Science Monitor, “The ‘Al Qaeda’ who usually get killed are just poor kids — not people who pose some special threat.” He also noted that such targets are “very, very easy to replace.”
Furthermore, drone strikes play into the hands of al-Queda. Farea al-Muslimi, who heads a pro-democracy organization in Yemen, said, “a big part of al-Queda’s power has been convincing Yemeni that they are in a war with America.”
John Glaser, columnist for the Washington Times, charges President Obama with committing acts of terrorism. “The Obama administration’s relentless drone war gives the lie to the old saying that terrorism is a weapon of the weak: The world’s most powerful military superpower practices terrorism too,” he said.
“The Libertarian Party calls on President Obama to end the drone war in Yemen immediately,” said Neale. “This will stop the carnage, stop breeding new terrorists, stop this unconstitutional war, and make peace in the Middle East possible.”