July 2, 2012

Drones Don't Create Terrorists

Christopher Swift, Foreign Affairs

AP Photo

Critics argue that drone strikes create new adversaries and drive al Qaeda's recruiting. As the Yemeni youth activist Ibrahim Mothana recently wrote in The New York Times, "Drone strikes are causing more and more Yemenis to hate America and join radical militants; they are not driven by ideology but rather by a sense of revenge and despair." The Washington Post concurs. In May, it reported that the "escalating campaign of U.S. drone strikes [in Yemen] is stirring increasing sympathy for al Qaeda-linked militants and driving tribesmen to join a network linked to terrorist plots against the United States." The ranks of al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) have tripled to 1,000 in the last three years, and the link between its burgeoning membership, U.S. drone strikes, and local...

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TAGGED: Drones, al-Qaeda, Yemen

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