Monday, July 8, 2013
A U.S. drone strike killed at least 17 people in Pakistan’s tribal region on Wednesday, Reuters reports.
Taliban commanders and security officials told Reuters that the strike mostly killed fighters for the Haqqani network.
But Reuters also reports this (emphasis ours):
Many were wounded in the attack, local tribesman Kaleemullah Dawar said, but rescuers delayed for fear of falling victim to a second attack, a common tactic with drone strikes.
That tactic is known as the “double tap,” which bombs multiple targets in relatively quick succession — meaning that the second strike often hits first responders.
In 2007 the FBI said the tactic as commonly used by terrorist organizations such as Hamas.
Last year a study by the NYU School of Law and Stanford Law School detailed the U.S. use of the double tap, providing first-hand accounts of its devastating effect on rescuers and humanitarian workers.
Last June the UN special rapporteur on extrajudicial killings Christof Heyns said he considers secondary strikes to be “war crimes.”
The NYU/Stanford report stated: “As international law experts have noted, intentional strikes on first responders may constitute war crimes.”
The fact that it is now normalized as a common tactic of the U.S. drone war is stunning.
Furthermore, Spencer Ackerman of The Guardian reports that a recent study conducted by a U.S. military adviser found that over the course of a year that U.S. drone strikes in Afghanistan caused 10 times more civilian casualties than strikes by manned fighter aircraft.
Full article: http://www.businessi … lian-rescuers-2013-7