For The Daily Beast with Fakhar Kakakhel: PESHAWAR, Pakistan — Half a dozen men sit on the floor in a grimy rented storefront in the crowded Khyber Bazaar. A bottle of locally brewed liquor chills in a water cooler in the corner, a Pepsi bottle next to it for mixing. A Bollywood soundtrack plays in the background. It’s a farewell party for Allah Noor, who has spent the last five years identifying targets in rural Pakistan for U.S. drone strikes. Noor, as we’ll call him,…Continue Reading “Obama’s Deadly Informants: The Drone Spotters of Pakistan”

Why a Pakistani reporter is suing the CIA for murder

For the Christian Science Monitor: Kareem Khan’s son and brother died in a US drone strike. His lawsuit has made waves in Pakistan and overseas, and he was recently detained for nine days. On Dec. 31, 2009, Kareem Khan, a journalist in Islamabad, got a call from a cousin in his hometown in Pakistan’s tribal belt. He was told to come quickly. He reached his village a few hours later to find locals gathered around the rubble of his house, the target of an American…Continue Reading “Why a Pakistani reporter is suing the CIA for murder”

For Foreign Policy: In a wide-ranging counter-terrorism speech in May, President Barack Obama indicated that he would be scaling back the war that the United States has engaged in since 9/11. And he said the targeted killing program that has become a major component of this war is aimed at “al Qaeda and its associated forces,” and “specific networks of violent extremists that threaten America,” using a legal standard put forth in the 2001 Authorization to Use Military Force to justify the strikes. The President…Continue Reading “Mission creep? The scope of Obama’s drone war”