this is a visualization of every known
drone strike ordered by President Trump in Afghanistan from the middle of 2018
to the middle of 2019 during this 12-month period over 1,400 strikes have
been ordered within this country alone this nearly doubled the total number of
strikes ordered by President Bush and President Obama combined with over
23,000 casualties to date and over 2,000 civilians killed you might be asking
yourself how did we get here Yemen November 3rd 2002 the Bush
administration execute the first targeted assassination using a drone
they successfully killed six targets including Abu Ahmad al Haj Ozzie a
naturalized American citizen just over one year since the Twin Towers were
attacked the event goes by without much dissent though the Bush administration
will forever be known for beginning the practice of using unmanned drones to
carry out targeted assassinations the truth is only a small handful of
operations were carried out during President Bush’s Kenya
however a young senator and presidential hopeful by the name of Barack Obama
campaigned on the idea of ending the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan his
solution was simple to change the type of wars we fought from wasting American
lives on the battlefield to assassinating our enemies with them and
drones and surgical precision and so immediately upon his inauguration the
bombs began to draw this visualization shows every known
drone strike the US has ordered in Afghanistan Pakistan Yemen and Somalia
the size of each circle represents the number of casualties per strike and the
whiter an area turns the more bombs have been dropped within that area within a
small amount of time and the data comes from the Bureau of Investigative
Journalism President Barack Obama would follow through on his campaign promise
ordering more than ten times the number of drone assassinations as his
predecessor nevertheless on October 2009 he would be awarded the Nobel Peace
Prize the committee would cite his commitment to diplomacy and human rights
stating quote for 108 years the Norwegian Nobel Committee has sought to
stimulate precisely that international policy and those attitudes for which
Obama is now the world’s leading spokesman it would later be leaked that he once
bragged to his aide saying quote turns out I’m really good at killing people
didn’t know that was going to be a strong suit of mine by September 30th
2011 Barack Obama had been president for 973 days he had killed 1156 people using
the drone program alone including 113 civilians but September is special
because on this month Barack Obama killed Anwar al awaken his first
native-born American citizen without a warrant on suspicion of terrorism the
administration never disclosed any evidence to back its claim however two
weeks later the administration ordered a drone strike that successfully killed
his son Abdul Rahman Allah wakey once again without a warrant he was 16
years old an American citizen and was suspected of nothing journalists would
start to ask how can the president have such overwhelming power to order the
deaths of civilians and even American citizens with no warrant or even
suspected crime and received no repercussions on February of 2013 we
received our answer a leaked memo from the Obama administration shows the legal
argument for these targeted assassinations it says that the person
in question must be a quote senior operational leader of al Qaeda or of an
Associated force however the memo gives no review process to these claims
meaning that the office of the president can assign these labels to and therefore
assassinate whoever they choose and because the American government works on
a system of precedence this is a power the Obama administration
awarded to itself as well as all future presidents On January 20th 2017 Donald Trump was
sworn into office he wasted no time deploying his massive drone army and
making use of his newly established powers in the first 30 days he would
kill 151 people including 26 civilians and 19 children and within his first two
years his administration executed nearly 2,000 strikes which means President
Trump has ordered nearly as many strikes in two years as President Obama did in
his entire presidency this now brings us to the time period highlighted at the
beginning of this video a change in strategy has brought a surge of drone
bombings throughout Afghanistan while the administration continues to draw
homes in Yemen and Somalia we have summarized the data and
normalized each statistic for the number of years each sitting president was
actively engaged in drone strikes from 2002 onwards President Bush ordered an
average of just 13 strikes per year President Obama would go on to increase
that by a factor of 10 while doubling the number of civilians killed every
year lastly President Trump not to be outdone
by his predecessors has so far increased the rate at which he launched drone
attacks by a factor of six assuming president Trump sits in office for a
full eight years and continues to launch attacks at the same rate he will have
launched a total of six thousand eight hundred and sixty-seven strikes and
killed over 26,000 people