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News & Current Events Discuss Trump Ramped Up Drone Strikes in America’s Shadow Wars at the General Forum; “Obama launched 186 drone strikes on Yemen, Somalia, and especially Pakistan during his first two years in office. In 2017 ...

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Old 11-26-2018, 05:18 PM
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Default Trump Ramped Up Drone Strikes in America’s Shadow Wars

“Obama launched 186 drone strikes on Yemen, Somalia, and especially Pakistan during his first two years in office. In 2017 and 2018 to date, Trump has launched 238 drone strikes there.”

what does the rw say about this?
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Old 11-26-2018, 05:19 PM
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Default Re: Trump Ramped Up Drone Strikes in America’s Shadow Wars

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The U.S. president inherited a remotely piloted weapon of death from his predecessor. In his earliest period in office, he used this lethal robot force promiscuously, sharply escalating attacks on suspected terrorists away from his declared wars. As time went on, his use of drone strikes in those places diminished.

Barack Obama? Well, yes. But a look at available statistics for drone strikes on America’s undeclared battlefield shows that this description also applies to Donald Trump.

In 2009 and 2010, Obama launched 186 drone strikes on Yemen, Somalia, and especially Pakistan. Donald Trump’s drone strikes during his own first two years on the three pivotal undeclared battlefields, however, eclipse Obama’s—but without a corresponding reputation for robot-delivered bloodshed, or even anyone taking much notice. In 2017 and 2018 to date, Trump has launched 238 drone strikes there, according to data provided to The Daily Beast by U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) and the drone-watchers at the Bureau of Investigative Journalism in London.

Those numbers come with a slew of asterisks. The number of drone strikes on the full-fledged acknowledged battlefields of Iraq, Afghanistan, and Syria have, ironically, proven far more difficult to track than those in shadow war zones—and knowledgeable observers like Chris Woods of the UK’s Airwars organization believe that the true center of the drone strikes is found there. Additionally, the death toll from those strikes in shadow war zones, especially of civilians, is at best a rough estimate.

“Obama launched 186 drone strikes on Yemen, Somalia, and especially Pakistan during his first two years in office. In 2017 and 2018 to date, Trump has launched 238 drone strikes there.”
A spokesperson for the National Security Council declined to comment. Pentagon officials did not respond to The Daily Beast’s inquiries. But several former U.S. counterterrorism officials and practitioners point to Trump relaxing the standards Obama put in place to authorize a lethal attack in Somalia and likely elsewhere as the wellspring of an explanation.

“The burden of proof on the target was changed to a lesser burden of proof, and so that automatically opens up the aperture when you’re looking at intelligence and you have a probability factor, or a reasonable one, that your target is there,” explained retired Army Brig. Gen. Donald Bolduc, who commanded U.S. special operations forces in Africa from April 2015 to June 2017.

Under the Trump administration, the Air Force is spending more on the Hellfire missiles used by armed drones. Hellfire spending in the latter years of Obama administration briefly spiked as the Defense Department stocked up on ammunition to counter the rise of ISIS in Iraq and Syria. But even as the wars in Iraq and Syria wind down, the Trump administration has sought to purchase more drone missiles. Air Force budget documents show a 63 percent increase in Hellfire purchases in Trump’s 2017 budget and another 20 percent increase in the most recent budget request.

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A second trend also appears to be at work. The biggest escalation of the drone wars on those three battlefields under Trump came in 2017, his first year in office, followed by a substantial drop in 2018 thus far.

In 2017, Trump presided over an unprecedented 130 drone strikes in Yemen – there were 131, but one of those predated Trump’s inauguration – more than three times that of the previous year, CENTCOM told The Daily Beast. Many of those, according to the Bureau, are attributable to a substantial spike in March and April. With little over a month to go in 2018, the U.S. has launched 36 drone strikes in Yemen, CENTCOM said, nearly as many as the 38 Obama launched in his final year and the first 20 days of 2017.

“We're not able to talk about the frequency or trends of our strikes because of its potential impact on current operations,” a CENTCOM spokesman, Maj. Josh Jacques, told The Daily Beast.

Yemen-watchers offer various explanations. Relaxed strike rules at the beginning of the administration likely ensured the military in Yemen had a wider array of strike-and-raid options. The spring 2017 drone spree coincided with a targeting focus on al Qaeda by the Saudis and Emiratis, who with U.S. support are waging a devastating war on Yemen. Afterward, neither Saudi Arabia nor the United Arab Emirates has prioritized al Qaeda—and their coalition has reportedly cut deals with those fighters against mutual foes in Yemen’s Iran-backed Houthi movement.

In Pakistan, drone strikes against suspected al Qaeda targets declined every year since Obama’s 2010 high-water mark of 128, dropping to three in 2016. Trump launched five in 2017, and only one in 2018, which killed the head of the Pakistani Taliban. But the global influence of al Qaeda’s Pakistan-based old leadership and their allies have declined. Pakistan’s leading politician criticizing drone strikes and U.S. counterterrorism efforts, Imran Khan, is now prime minister, and this week Khan forcefully rebuked dismissive remarks from Trump about his country. All of this raises fundamental questions about the future of drone strikes in Pakistan.

But in Somalia, where the administration in 2017 loosened restrictions on drone usage, there doesn’t appear to be much of a drop-off at all in 2018. The Trump administration is still waging a more aggressive drone campaign in the East African country than his predecessor, to minimal attention.
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Old 11-26-2018, 05:24 PM
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Default Re: Trump Ramped Up Drone Strikes in America’s Shadow Wars

Obama let it "leak" that he personally approved every addition to the drone strike kill list. Trump delegates that to the military and intelligence leaders. It is not a surprise the military authorized more strikes.

So, what is your point?
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Old 11-26-2018, 05:30 PM
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Default Re: Trump Ramped Up Drone Strikes in America’s Shadow Wars

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Originally Posted by AZRWinger View Post
Obama let it "leak" that he personally approved every addition to the drone strike kill list. Trump delegates that to the military and intelligence leaders. It is not a surprise the military authorized more strikes.

So, what is your point?
rwr's berated obama night and day over drone strikes -why not trump?
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Old 11-26-2018, 05:37 PM
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Default Re: Trump Ramped Up Drone Strikes in America’s Shadow Wars

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rwr's berated obama night and day over drone strikes -why not trump?
Might of had something to do with Obama lecturing McCain that we could not win the war on terrorists by air raid bombing villages then air raid bombing villages once he got elected.
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Old 11-26-2018, 05:52 PM
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Default Re: Trump Ramped Up Drone Strikes in America’s Shadow Wars

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Might of had something to do with Obama lecturing McCain that we could not win the war on terrorists by air raid bombing villages then air raid bombing villages once he got elected.
no
like you trying to convince me addhd deplorable cult members would remember details

more like their memes: trump good/obama bad
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Old 11-27-2018, 04:15 AM
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Default Re: Trump Ramped Up Drone Strikes in America’s Shadow Wars

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Originally Posted by saltwn View Post
no
like you trying to convince me addhd deplorable cult members would remember details

more like their memes: trump good/obama bad
Gobbley gook, like many of your night time posts
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Old 11-27-2018, 05:39 AM
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Default Re: Trump Ramped Up Drone Strikes in America’s Shadow Wars

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Originally Posted by saltwn View Post
no
like you trying to convince me addhd deplorable cult members would remember details

more like their memes: trump good/obama bad
You asked the question and it was answered. Now you disregard the answer. Why don't you tell us why "rwr's" berated Obama for something that Trump is doing because apparently you know more about us than we do.
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Old 11-27-2018, 04:32 PM
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Default Re: Trump Ramped Up Drone Strikes in America’s Shadow Wars

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You asked the question and it was answered. Now you disregard the answer. Why don't you tell us why "rwr's" berated Obama for something that Trump is doing because apparently you know more about us than we do.
It's a good possibility I know as much.
politics is my final answer
What say you to that?
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Old 11-27-2018, 04:37 PM
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Default Re: Trump Ramped Up Drone Strikes in America’s Shadow Wars

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It's a good possibility I know as much.
politics is my final answer
What say you to that?
Of course you think it is about politics because that is how you think. However, some of us here actually have the ability to apply logic to our thinking and us that to form our opinions. In your answer, you completely dismissed the answer that was given and instead told us what you think. But you never addressed the answer to disprove it in any way. Therefore, you applied your political lean and dismissed it out of hand.
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