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Monday, November 25, 2013

Republican Lawmakers Vote against Disclosing Victims of U.S. Drone Attacks

The Republican congressional cover-up here is to conceal the war crimes of killing untold noncombatant civilians in the US Govt’s “war on terror” whereby the US Government sponsors both sides of their own creation. ‘Let the families grieve alone’ congress says while the American “christians” say “so what, it ain’t happen’ here.”……..yet.

Monday, November 25, 2013
 Source AllGov
Drone Victim, Noor Syed,
aged 8, killed in drone
strike in Pakistan
(photo: Noor Behram)
Barely three weeks after largely avoiding historic first-person testimony by Pakistani victims of U.S. drone strikes, Congressional lawmakers killed a proposal to force the government to publish an annual count of the casualties caused by American drone attacks. 

In fact, none of the 15 members of the House Intelligence Committee who voted against the idea bothered to attend the victims’ hearing. A similar provision was approved earlier in November by the Senate Intelligence Committee.

Although the Obama administration insists that the drone strikes—which it escalated dramatically starting from 2009 to 2011—have killed or injured only a small number of people, respected human rights groups report larger totals.

Rep. Adam Schiff, the California Democrat who sponsored the bill, argued Thursday that "production of this report will require minimal resources, but will provide a modest but important measure of transparency and oversight.” He vowed to continue fighting for the provision’s passage.

Congressional Republicans and some Democrats reject the idea of publishing casualty totals related to drone strikes that are largely conducted as “covert actions,” that officially are not happening.

"People complain justifiably that the Obama administration is not being transparent," said Robert Naiman, policy director for Just Foreign Policy. “But Congress also is not being transparent. Every day this drone policy continues, Congress is voting through its inaction to do nothing.”

One representative of the drone victims, Suraia Sahar of Afghans United for Justice, condemned the vote: “By blocking transparency, the House denies accountability for the slaughter committed against innocent lives in drone strikes. This is a gross disregard for human life.”
-Matt Bewig
To Learn More:
Lawmakers Vote to Keep Drone War Deaths Secret (by Susan Lazare, Common Dreams)