The United States government has escalated the uses of drone strikes in Pakistan and in Yemen since the start of the year. And now the U.S. appears to be considering the use of drone strikes in Mali, a North African country where French forces are helping the government fight Islamist militants and rebels.
Overall, the Obama administration has reportedly carried out more than 300 drone strikes in the past three and a half years — nearly six times as many as the Bush Administration. However, drones are not without their drawbacks. Several independent studies report that hundreds of civilians have been killed alongside the targeted militants. The United Nations this week said a special investigator is launching an inquiry into the impact on civilians of drone strikes and other targeted killings. And several experts on warfare and foreign policy are questioning whether the drone strikes are, in the long run, doing more harm than good.
To hear more about the global impact of US drones, Global Journalist spoke to Judith Bello. She's a peace activist based in New York state and a member of the Fellowship of Reconciliation’s Task Force on the Middle East. This past fall she traveled to Pakistan and Waziristan as part of an an anti-drone delegation, organized by CODEPINK Women for Peace.