U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Brian Ferguson.
In the opening weeks of his presidency, President Donald Trump has set an intense pace in his use of unmanned aerial vehicles to wield deadly force, according to a new article from Micah Zenko, a senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations.
Trump has launched 30 drone strikes over the first 41 days in his administration, including a reported 25 strikes in Yemen on March 2, which the Washington Post called“far more attacks in a single night than the United States has conducted in recent history.”
That rate computes to a drone strike every 1.4 days, Zenko notes. In contrast, former President Barack Obama conducted 542 drone strikes through his eight years in office, a rate of one strike every 5.4 days, according to Zenko’s report.
Obama vastly expanded the use of drone strikes during his presidency, something Zenko called “an enduring foreign policy legacy” for the former president in a New York Times op-ed last year.
“More consequential than the growth in drone strikes, is the Obama administration’s efforts to institutionalize and normalize the practice,” Zenko wrote.
It remains to be seen if Trump will keep up his pace, or where drone strikes will fit as the new president tries to carve out a foreign policy doctrine. Thus far, the results have been mixed. One of his strikes, a March 2 attack in Syria, took out a senior al Qaeda official, Abu al-Khayr al-Masri, described as the terror group’s second-in-command who was also son-in-law to al Qaeda’s late founder, Osama bin Laden.
Drone strikes were also used in the Jan. 29 raid that resulted in the death of U.S. Navy SEAL Senior Chief Petty Officer William “Ryan” Owens. That mission yielded in an unusually high number of civilian casualties, including multiple children.
Benjamin Franklin nailed it when he said, "Fatigue is the best pillow." True story, Benny. There's nothing like pushing your body so far past exhaustion that you'd willingly, even longingly, take a nap on a concrete slab.
U.S. Coast Guard Petty Officer 2nd Class Karl Munson pilots a 26-foot boat while Petty Officer 2nd Class Gabriel Diaz keeps an eye on a boarding team who is inspecting a 79-foot shrimp boat in the Gulf of Mexico, off the coast of New Orleans, La., on April 27, 2005
Radio transmissions to the U.S. Coast Guard are usually calls for help from boaters, but one captain got on the radio recently just to say thanks to the men and women who are currently working without pay.
DOVER AIR FORCE BASE, Del (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump traveled to Dover Air Force Base in Delaware on Saturday to receive the remains of four Americans killed in a suicide bombing in northern Syria.
Trump, locked in a battle with congressional Democrats that has led to a nearly month-long partial government shutdown, announced his trip via a pre-dawn tweet, saying he was going "to be with the families of 4 very special people who lost their lives in service to our Country!"
Former President George W. Bush is calling for an end to the partial government shutdown, which is about to hit the one-month mark and is currently the longest shutdown in US history.
In an appeal made on Instagram, the 43rd president called on "leaders on both sides to put politics aside, come together, and end this shutdown." The caption was posted with an image of him and former First Lady Laura Bush giving pizza to their Secret Service detail.