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McCollum wants to end CIA drone war

by The Big E on June 12, 2013 · 1 comment

220px-Betty_McCollum_Official_Photo_2009Rep. Betty McCollum (DFL-MN) proposed a novel amendment to the defense appropriations bill that would probably go a long way to improving America’s reputation around the world. She proposes ending the CIA’s drone program.
If there is one thing inflaming Muslim anger across the globe, it’s the indiscriminate US drone strikes that take out terrorists and hundreds of innocent men, women and children who happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time. The CIA often doesn’t know for sure if they’re bombing an actual terrorist or a “terrorist profile” (see link at bottom for details). And there is no oversight of their bombing campaign.
“It is no surprise the White House opposes this amendment,” McCollumn explained. “The executive branch wants to maintain its CIA drone program and its target list without congressional oversight, without transparency or accountability. Right now the CIA is running an assassination program and the world is watching. Soon China, Russia and Iran will have the same capability and will use the CIA’s standard of killing anyone profiled as an enemy.”
Unsurprisingly, Republicans and the White House blocked her amendment from getting a vote.
McCollum wanted to sole responsibility for drone strikes to be the Department of Defense.
McCollum asserts that as many as 770 civilians, 200 of them children, have been killed in the decade-long drone war conducted by the CIA.
Here’s an in-depth NBC article about the CIA drone war.

Mac Hall June 13, 2013 at 5:02 am

Just another example proving that Betty McCollum is the Best Representative in the Minnesota delegation … speaking up on issues that need discussion.

It is rather disappointing that they used a voice vote instead of a roll call so that we could know how each member of the Appropriations Committee voted. The reasoning offered by Chairman Bill Young (R-FL) seemed odd … he stated that Congress would be tying the hands of the Commander-in-Chief in how he prosecutes a war which means they are vacating their oversight of the CIA …. and as the media is bringing to the attention of the public, private contractors are being used in a variety of surveillance matters … It is estimated that there are at least a dozen defense contractors that supply personnel to help the Air Force, special operations units and the CIA fly their drones … one private company could have as many as 450 employees.
IF its war, then it should be a military action … not private companies or CIA.

Although all the Republicans on the Appropriations Committee voted against the McCollum Amendment, I suspect that if it went to a vote by the full House that more than a few Libertarians would agree with her amendment.

Let us remember that the drones that are flying over America were approved as part of the FAA Air Transportation Modernization and Safety Improvement Act … voting against it were McCollum, Ellison, Peterson, and Walz … voting for domestic drones were Bachmann, Kline and Paulsen (then Cravaack).

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