The Pentagon says American airstrikes in Somalia have killed no civilians since President Trump accelerated attacks against Shabab militants there two years ago.
Amnesty International investigated five of the more than 100 strikes carried out in Somalia since 2017 by drones and manned aircraft, and in just that small sampling found that at least 14 civilians were killed.
The Pentagon says airstrikes by the American-led coalition fighting the Islamic State killed at least 1,257 civilians in Iraq and Syria as of the end of January.
Airwars, a university-based monitoring group, estimates that those strikes killed at least 7,500 civilians in those countries.
Those disparities show how poorly the American public understands the human cost of an air war fought largely by remote-controlled drones. Drones have been the main weapon in the counterterrorism fight for more than a decade. They kill extremists without risking American lives, making combat seem antiseptic on the home front. But the number of civilians killed in these attacks is shrouded in secrecy.
Warrug.com recently received a shipment of rugs from Peshawar, Pakistan including some new designs woven in Pakistan. The weavers are Afghan Turkmen who have settled permenantly in Pakistan after being refugees. This summer they produced three rugs featuring Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV’s or drones).
The second rug, below, #1580, features armed Predator drones.
Below is the third rug of the set, and it is particularly interesting because the drones are colored red, white and blue. I didn’t notice this important color choice until photoshopping (rather GiMP’ing) the border photo when I noticed the interlocking red, white, and blue border.
Predator Drone from TBD1’s Flickr set
Warrug.com’s selection of small red rugs illustrates sub groups of red rugs well.
‘Classic Red Rug
“[not] Vegetable Dye”
Modern [true] Vegetable Dye
‘Five Genades’ (random name but most popular style)
‘Squashed Helicopter’ Style’
‘Camoflage Helicopter’ named for harlequin-esque rendering on helicopters. These were readil available in 1999 and 2000. They are like “Classic” red rugs, but not quite as finely knotted.
“Fat RPG’s” (for lack of a better name)
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