Drone Strikes: A Year in Review

Chris Woods and Jack Serle, of the Bureau of Investigative Journalism, have written a comprehensive summary of U.S. drone strikes in 2012.

The major ‘trends’ in the numerical data suggest: (a) an absolute reduction in strikes in Pakistan; (b) a relative reduction in the number of ‘civilian’ casualties (perhaps as a result of 1. international pressure 2. halting of signature strikes); (c) an increase in attacks in Yemen, following AQAP’s growing grip on the southern part of the country.

The report also contains some of the major geopolitical flashpoints of the year – including Obama’s ‘five rules’ for a covert drone strike, and the revelation that he is intimately involved in coordinating attacks.

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