Published: Wed, March 15, 2017
Worldwide | By Sean Reid

Trump Is Once Again Allowing CIA Drone Strikes, Reversing Obama Protocol

Trump Is Once Again Allowing CIA Drone Strikes, Reversing Obama Protocol

"This allowance of the Central Intelligence Agency to exercise drone operations is an invitation for war all over the planet and the more the United States is perceived as an authoritarian police power dropping bombs and exercising drone strikes all over the world, the more the world is going to unite and rebel against that oppressive force", he said.

American President Donald Trump has given the Central Intelligence Agency new authority to conduct drone attacks against suspected militants and terrorists, the Wall Street Journal reported on Monday, citing USA officials. The CIA would use drones and other intelligence tools to locate suspected terrorists and the military would carry out the strike.

The Wall Street Journal notes that Obama used this structure to provide more transparency, so if true, Trump's new strategy would eliminate that benefit.

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Regardless of what eventually happens in the upcoming months, this possible change illustrates just how important it is to keep individuals like Trump from obtaining more power over the US national defense system without participation from Congress - and without holding a national debate first. The latter would be carried out by the military's Joint Special Operations Command.

Speaking with senior USA officials, Jaffe and DeYoung report that the proposed changes to counter-terrorism strategy "would empower the Pentagon to make decisions on targets without approval from the White House and potentially scrap the "near-certainty" standard of no civilian deaths for strikes outside war zones". The Pentagon, however, must publicly report most airstrikes.

The changes to the Obama-era Presidential Policy Guidance would empower the Pentagon to make decisions on targets without approval from the White House and potentially scrap the "near-certainty" standard of no civilian deaths for strikes outside war zones. The CIA, the Pentagon and the White House are negotiating a longer-term approach to conducting counterterrorism operations and determining who has the authority to do what, US officials said. But "f$3 or Obama, the high standard ensured that local partner forces did not come to depend on American air support and that the USA military did not inadvertently slide down a slippery slope into larger-scale combat operations or even war", WaPo observed.

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