September 17, 2019

Pakistan protests “unjustified” US drone attacks

It looks like a weird model aeroplane but no living creature is safe from this remote controlled instrument of US foreign policy.

The upsurge in US drone attacks in Pakistan has led the Pakistan government to protest that the strikes have “neither justification nor understanding”.

It is estimated that more than 150 people, militants and civilians, have died in US drone strikes over the last month.

Pakistan Foreign Ministry spokesman Abdul Basit said such attacks were “counter-productive and also a violation of our sovereignty.”

There has been a reported rise in anti-American sentiment in Pakistan since the drone strikes escalated. You think?

Yesterday the US were forced to apologise to Pakistan when an inquiry found that US forces were responsible for an airstirke that blew up a Pakistan border post killing two Pakistani soldiers.

Pakistan in protest shut the key Torkham border-crossing into Afghanistan last week which has led to a massive back-log of tankers and supply vehicles at other crossings.

The normally fast moving supply convoys have come under increasing attack from insurgents who have enjoyed having a stationary target for a change. More than 40 tankers have been destroyed in the last week.

Mr Basit said that the drone war was “not serving the larger strategic interests, especially in the context of our efforts to win hearts and minds, which is part and parcel of our strategy against militants and terrorists. We hope that the US will revisit its policy.”

Local officials say that at least five suspected militants were killed in a drone strike on Wednesday in north-west Pakistan.

Relations between Pakistan and the US have been further strained with a US report claiming that Pakistan has been lukewarm in its efforts to curb militants.

The NATO forces in Afghanistan are in a no-win situation since day one. They cannot defeat the Taliban militarily and have been forced to hang on in the hope that a political solution can be reached to enable them to get out of Afghanistan all together.

The Taliban and other insurgent groups are also using Pakistan as both a supply base and an opportunity to undermine the government through guerilla attacks.

The Pakistani military is either unwilling or unable to go into some insurgent controlled areas, so the US is forced to carry the war to them using the drones. From the air it is hard to distinguish friend from foe so there has been inevitable casualties among non-combatants and government forces.

The US military does have to take some responsibility for the deaths of innocent victims. They have a long history of pulling the trigger in haste only to find they have killed innocents.