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OpEdNews Op Eds    H3'ed 1/29/09

Blood on His Hands

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Well, Obama now has blood on his hands. He reportedly ordered (or authorized) predator drone attacks inside Pakistan, and Afghanistan. Both strikes are reported to have resulted in civilian deaths.

The attacks on villages, and the (protested) attacks inside Pakistan, reflect that Obama is going to continue the disastrous policy of George Bush. Namely, that "collateral damage" is acceptable in the pursuit of "terrorists," and that the U.S. will engage in preemptive strikes inside another nation - even if that nation is reputedly an ally.

The result is that non-combatants are dead, and that this blood stains Obama's hands. It also signals to the world that Obama seems more than willing to continue the policies of U.S. military imperialism in pursuit of its goals.

It makes no difference to the families of the dead that Obama is an icon of "change" and "hope."

It makes no difference to a teetering Pakistani government when a new President is as cavalier about acknowledging its sovereignty than the old President. It sends the same message.

In both views it serves the interests of those opposed to U.S. policies and intervention, and will certainly recruit even more to the cause of those labeled as "terrorists" and "Taliban."

It further undermines the hold of the government of Pakistan, and it does so at a time that the threat of conflict (including nuclear conflict) is high between Pakistan and India.

But perhaps most importantly, and of long term impact, is that our shiny new President now has the blood of innocents on his hands. Of note, is that little has been made of this in the corporate press. Nothing has come out of the Administration regarding these attacks, the policies, or the issue of the deaths of innocents.

Maybe there is a "progressive" and an American resistance to "tarnishing" Obama. Well, he has done this himself. Regardless of what other good, what other positive steps he takes, he has the direct responsibility for the deaths he orders.
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Rowan Wolf is an activist and sociologist living in Oregon. She is the founder and principle author of Uncommon Thought Journal, and Editor in Chief of Cyrano's Journal Today.

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