US drone attacks escalate inside Pakistan

Peter Symonds

The US is intensifying its drone attacks in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) of Pakistan, bordering Afghanistan, as the Pakistani army prepares a major military operation against Islamist militants in North Waziristan.

The latest attack on Friday involved missile strikes from CIA-controlled drones on three separate locations in North Waziristan. According to unnamed Pakistani intelligence officials, 18 “suspected militants” were killed. As in previous attacks, most casualties would undoubtedly have been civilians, including women and children.

The Associated Press reported that the strikes came just minutes apart on mud brick compounds located several kilometres from each other in the Shawal Valley. The area is mountainous and heavily forested, and serves as a crossing point into Afghanistan for insurgent groups opposed to the US-led occupation.

Citing local tribesmen, the Pakistani newspaper, The News, reported: “The people who helped retrieve the bodies from the debris of the collapsed buildings said all the bodies had been burnt and torn into pieces. They said the bodies were beyond recognition.” Some 14 injured people were taken to local health facilities, where doctors reported that most were in a critical condition.

The drone attacks, in blatant violation of Pakistani sovereignty, came less than 24 hours after Islamabad had issued a formal protest to an unnamed senior American diplomat over attacks earlier in the week. A Pakistani foreign ministry spokesman described the drone strikes as “illegal and unproductive” during a press briefing last Friday.

Washington simply ignored the protest—the eighth in the 12 months—as the Pakistani government and military give their tacit approval to the drone strikes. The formal protests are a threadbare attempt by the government to placate widespread public anger, especially in the FATA region, over the relentless US attacks.

Israeli Court Legitimizes Murder

Stephen Lendman

Rachel Corrie, 23, stands in front of a Palestinian's home to
prevent it from being demolished.
(Associated Press)

Cindy and Craig Corrie hoped for better. So did sister Sarah. The world knows Israel murdered their daughter, Rachel, in cold blood. On August 28, Israeli justice ruled otherwise.

It is unsurprising in a nation contemptuous of rule of law principles, democratic values, and life itself. Israel is a rogue terror state. It's an out-of-control blight on humanity. It's a regional menace. Racism and persecution are institutionalized. It's unfit to live in for most Jews. For Arabs and supporters of equal rights and justice, it's dangerous.

On March 16, 2003, an Israeli bulldozer soldier/driver murdered Rachel Corrie in cold blood. - Courageously she had tried to stop a lawless Rafah refugee camp home demolition. Eye witnesses said she climbed atop a giant militarized Caterpillar tractor, spoke to the driver, climbed down, knelt 10 - 20 meters in front in clear view, and blocked its path with her body.

Activists screamed for it to stop. The operator ignored them. He deliberately crushed Rachel to death. To be sure, he ran over her twice. He murdered her in cold blood. Israel's government and military supported him. They still do.

The Western Onslaught Against International Law

Paul Craig Roberts

A new film, “Compliance,” examines “the human desire to follow and obey authority.” Liberal institutions, such as the media, universities, federal courts, and human rights organizations, which have traditionally functioned as checks on the blind obedience to authority, have in our day gone over to power’s side. The subversion of these institutions has transformed them from checks on power into servants of power. The result is the transformation of culture from the rule of law to unaccountable authority resting on power maintained by propaganda.

Propaganda is important in the inculcation of trust in authority.The Pussy Riot case shows the power of Washington’s propaganda even inside Russia itself and reveals that Washington’s propaganda has suborned important human rights organizations such as Human Rights Watch, Chatham House, and Amnesty International.

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