Re: Call Off the Drones?

There is a statistic in the David Kilcullen quote that Max excerpts below that I find absolutely arresting:

Since 2006, we’ve killed 14 senior Al Qaeda leaders using drone strikes; in the same time period, we’ve killed 700 Pakistani civilians in the same area.

I’m used to parsing the civilian-to-terrorist kill ratio as it is obsessively applied to Israel and its enemies, but even by those standards, we are dealing in Pakistan with a military campaign that far surpasses anything the IDF has done in its destructiveness to civilians. We’re talking about a 50:1 ratio of civilian to terrorist deaths. In the famed “Jenin massacre,” fully half the Palestinians killed were terrorists, for a 1:1 ratio. In 2004, Sheikh Yassin, the “spiritual leader” of Hamas, was killed along with two bodyguards and nine bystanders — a 3:1 ratio. At the time, the British foreign secretary denounced the operation, saying that Israel “is not entitled to go in for this kind of unlawful killing and we condemn it. It is unacceptable, it is unjustified and it is very unlikely to achieve its objectives.”

0
Shares
Google+ Print

Re: Call Off the Drones?

Must-Reads from Magazine

Your ‘Historical Detail,’ Our Real Life

Daily life in Israel is a mystery to so many who comment on it.

A review of a comedy of manners set in England in the 1920s wouldn’t seem the obvious place to look to understand why the average Westerner really has no business trying to tell Israelis how to run their country. But two sentences in this New York Times book review encapsulate the problem perfectly: “Historical details, which abound, are often fascinating. (Who knew that beards interfere with gas masks?)”

6
Shares
Google+ Print

Originalism Goes to the Rodeo

Neil Gorsuch makes "originalism" accessible to the masses.

During his confirmation hearing yesterday, Judge Neil Gorsuch introduced the members of the Senate Judiciary Committee to Mutton Busting, a rodeo event which the jurist described as follows:  “You take a poor little kid, you find a sheep, and you attach the one to the other and see how long they can hold on.” With his fourth day of hearings still ahead, Gorsuch may just as well have been describing the confirmation process itself.

14
Shares
Google+ Print

Sponsor a Sunni Militia? No Thanks.

The Sunni problem will only be made worse by patronizing Americans.

As representatives of 68 countries participating in the global coalition to defeat the Islamic State (ISIS, ISIL, Daesh) meet in Washington, a number of plans will be on the table, and even more will be debated informally on the sidelines. As allied forces anticipate the liberation of Mosul, attention is increasingly focused on the next phase, both in Iraq and in Syria.