Human life is too high a price

April 30, 2015


Due to extreme controversy and criticism back in 2014, the Obama Administration agreed to scale back usage of drones in warfare.


Drones, formally known as unmanned aerial vehicles (UVAs) or remotely piloted aerial systems (RPAS), are used in dangerous situations that are too risky or difficult to send pilots.


In January, the CIA ordered a drone strike on an al-Qaeda compound in Pakistan near the Afghan border.


This strike, although killing an al-Qaeda operative (who was American, ironic, yes) also killed two hostages who had been held captive for over two years at the compound.


One of the hostages was an American who had been held captive since 2011 and the other was an Italian man who had been captured in 2012.


The deaths of these two innocent men has been deemed a setback for the US’s drone strike program by media outlets.


They have also re-sparked a controversial debate about whether drones should or should not be used in war situations.


Some think drones are like any other kind of high-capacity weapon used during war and to have a problem with one weapon is to have a problem with another.


Drones take the risk of killing our military men out of the equation and they are situational in use, meaning they are typically only used when a specific target is in mind not just for any general attack.


With the case of the Pakistan al-Qaeda strike, the government knew there were operatives there, but they were unaware of the hostages.


Had they known about the hostages, it is doubtful the drone strike would have been ordered.


It is safe for us to believe that the government would not purposefully endanger the lives of civilians or prisoners of war.


Most people are for drone usage, some more so than others. The aforementioned are the passionate believers. Then we have those who agree with drone usage but in moderation.


These people do not like the power that comes with drones, but they do like how it removes our military men from harm’s way.


These people understand the objective of drones but they do not like the risk involved, meaning the potential threat to civilian lives.


But then the question becomes which life is more important, civilians’ or those of our military personnel?


It is not a fair question. No one life should weigh more important than the other.


However, we cannot condemn the government in tragic and unfortunate circumstances, like the recent drone strike.


The government had no knowledge of the hostages being held at the compound and there is no proof that they did.


The bottom line kind of comes down to this — drones are useful in war ,so not using them could be detrimental to all lives, both civilian and military.


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