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Mark R. Jacobson on 5 Myths About Drone Warfare in the Washington Post

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Sunday, February 10, 2013 at 10:41 PM

John Bellinger makes note in his post below that that Obama administration faces increasing organized NGO, activist-advocacy, and European pushback on drone warfare, and he cites today’s front page NYT story by Peter Baker that this essentially reprises the campaign against detention and interrogation of the Bush years.  Regular readers of Lawfare will be well aware of this, as it’s something that has been predicted by many contributors to this blog – John Bellinger, Jack Goldsmith, Ben Wittes, Bobby Chesney, myself and many others writing here.  I’ll write something here or at Volokh Conspiracy on my perception of the strategic gaming aspects of the anti-drone campaign.

But I wanted to note that there is some pushback on the current anti-drone warfare meme.  It’s worth making time for this new short read:  Mark R. Jacobson writes in today’s Washington Post on what he calls five myths about drone warfare.  In my view he’s right, and I’m particularly happy to see him offer clear, direct statements in defense of the morality of drone warfare; defense of drones as a precision weapons in limiting civilian casualties; corrective on the idea that drones make war riskless to the US; clarification on the technological features of drones; and an observation, which will be new to many of the pundits, that drones are one crucial feature of a larger counterterrorism strategy.