At least 15 people were killed today in a new flurry of US drone strikes against Pakistani tribal areas. The first strike killed seven people in South Waziristan, while a second strike killed another eight in North Waziristan.
The strikes were the first in nearly a month, an atypical lapse that has fueled reports that the detained CIA spy and US ‘consulate worker’ Raymond Davis, who police say was captured with GPS tracking devices on him, played a key role in the strikes.
As is always the case in such strikes, Pakistani officials immediately termed everyone slain in the strike a “suspect,” but provided no indications to suggest that any of the slain were “high value” targets, nor indeed any indication that they were militants at all, beyond the fact that missiles hit their homes.
Such strikes have killed over a thousand people in the last two years, but only a trivial number of them have ever been conclusively tied with militant factions, and the vast majority of them appear to have been simply innocent tribesmen.