Amnesty: Pakistanis Fear US Same Way They Fear Taliban

Leading human rights organization Amnesty International reported that, in July 2012, 18 civilian workers in Pakistan, including a 14-year-old boy, were killed by multiple US drone strikes just as they were about to eat dinner. Amnesty also documented the US government’s policy of “rescuer attacks,” in which drones kill people who rush to the aid of those hit in previous strikes.

The organization says the US military’s mass killings of civilians via drone strikes may amount to war crimes.

Many Pakistanis insist that the US’s putative “anti-terrorism” drone program only further fuels extremism in the region. Amnesty International’s Pakistan researcher Mustafa Qadri explained

At the end of the day, when we researched these cases, we found people were fearful of the US the way they’re fearful of the Taliban. That really is a great tragedy. You know, what’s really important is that we don’t forget human rights when we’re trying to protect our societies. People have told us they’re taking sleeping tablets at night. They don’t know when they’re going to be targeted, if they’ll be targeted, why they’ll be targeted. That really is a shocking situation.

The fear makes sense, seeing as, as Chomsky indicates, according to any rational definition (including its own), the US government is the world’s largest terrorist organization.

Imagine you were so afraid of getting blown to bits by a bomb, shot from an invisible robot in the sky, that you could not even go to sleep. This is not a movie; this is not a horror film. This is the reality the US government is forcing the people of Pakistan—particularly those in North Waziristan—to live through every day of their lives.