Monday, August 20, 2012

Protestors "Drummed" out of Drone Warfare Convention

Isn't it time we had a national conversation about the use of drones in warfare?  Medea Benjamin and Father Louis Vitale are trying to do their part to start that debate.  Vitale recently appeared on Democracy Now.

Check out the activities of peace activists around the issue of drone warfare:

"...To many, this is part of the price paid to defeat a treacherous enemy and maintain our national security. To Vitale, Benjamin and their colleagues, it's too great a price. And then he asks, "What is the impact on the people, what is the impact on our own people?"
The priest believes the incidents of predator operators suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder will be epidemic. His own experiences are anecdotal, he admits, but his conversations with British and U.S. military drone operators have been deeply troubling. Those onboard cameras not only spot suspected enemy targets, he notes, but they also reveal the damage wrought in unprecedented detail.
One Air Force veteran he spoke with talked of going from the "soccer part of his day (with his schoolchildren) to the killing part of his day," Vitale recalls. "He said the civilian casualties really bother him. 'When that happens, I don't sleep,' he said. You're bombing people, and it turns out to be civilians.
"What is the impact on our people?"
Vitale's cause may be spiritual, but to his critics, every step he takes is political. To be a devout practitioner of nonviolence is to ask questions about America's role on the world stage."

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