President Obama’s drone fever is contagious and is spreading worldwide, and the American industries that build the drones are slavering over the chance to supply the demand.
Christopher Ames, the director of international strategy development for Pentagon contractor General Atomics Aeronautical, was almost gleeful in his statement to Reuters regarding the opening of a potentially lucrative overseas market for his company’s remote control killing machines.
"There has been very considerable international interest," he told Reuters. "There have been countries that for a long time have been asking for Predator... (the export variant) opens up those markets to us."
The United States is building Afghanistan a $92 million "Pentagon," one of more than 1,100 buildings built or under construction in that country at a cost to the United States of $10 billion.
Although the Obama administration has been a bit more forthcoming lately in its admission of its policy of using drones to kill enemies by remote control, there is still an official reluctance to let too much information reach the public.
In the last year or so, the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and a group of reporters have filed Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) petitions requesting that the federal government provide greater access to operational details of the drone program and the legal arguments forwarded by the Obama administration in justifying not only the use of the drones, but their use in the killing of thousands in Pakistan alone.
On Monday, President Obama approved the loan of nearly $126 million to the communist regime in Vietnam to purchase a satellite from Lockheed Martin. In his memorandum to the Secretary of State to authorizing the loan, President Obama insists that making the loan was “in the national interest of the United States.”
On Tuesday Representative Ron Paul (R-Texas) rose to speak in the House of Representatives and promised to thwart any effort by the president to initiate military operations in Syria without a formal congressional declaration of war, as required by the Constitution:
This week I am introducing legislation to prohibit the Administration, absent a declaration of war by Congress, from supporting — directly or indirectly — any military or paramilitary operations in Syria,” the constitutionally consistent congressman declared.
GOP presidential contender Mitt Romney asserts that he would not need to seek congressional approval before launching war on Iran, prompting Senator Rand Paul to issue a scathing response. Senator Paul, who recently gave a controversial endorsement of Romney, made it clear that he would not support Romney's unconstitutional foreign policy.
This week President Obama and U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) Ron Kirk announced that Canada and Mexico have been invited to join the secret negotiations aimed at establishing the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP).
According to U.S. senior defense officials, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton delivered some slightly falsified information in order to put pressure Russia to abandon its relationship with Syria, seemingly as part of a larger agenda to intervene in Syria.
Twenty-six members of Congress — 24 Democrats and 2 Republicans (including Ron Paul) — sent a letter to President Obama demanding information on the authorization and use of drone strikes by the CIA and Joint Special Operations Command. It reads in part, “The implications of the use of drones for our national security are profound. They are faceless ambassadors that cause civilian deaths, and are frequently the only direct contact with Americans that the targeted communities have. They can generate powerful and enduring anti-American sentiment.”
The letter asks about the “nature of the follow-up that is conducted when civilians are killed or injured ... and the mechanisms that ensure civilian casualty members are collected, tracked and analyzed.”
It seems that not a day passes without reports of “militants” being killed by remote control. Drones patrol Pakistan using high-powered optics to find and fire on those considered enemies by the men with the joysticks.
Early Thursday morning, for example, an American drone attack killed at least three of these suspected belligerents in northwest Pakistan, a region described by American intelligence and military officers as a “hotbed” of Taliban and al-Qaeda operatives.
Hissing through the pre-dawn silence, two missiles were fired from the drone into a market in Miranshah, the administrative headquarters of the North Waziristan agency of the tribal region of Pakistan. Miranshah is located along the banks of the Tochi River in a wide valley between the foothills of the Hindu Kush mountains. It is just a few miles from the border with Afghanistan.