As much as I would like to believe that human beings could coexist without violence, turbulence and bloodshed, it is undeniable that warfare is inherent in our very nature. We like to think of ourselves as separate from other species due to our advanced intellect, but stripped down to our basic instincts we are no different from any other animal. But our intelligence is indeed a gift and our mental capabilities has enabled our survival. Throughout the millenniums of our existence, countless human lives have been lost as a result of warfare. When different cultures clash and attempt to eradicate each other, strategy plays a major role for the winner and the loser, but usually the outcome is decided by superior weaponry.
The western mind has become obsessed with the development of weapons and military intelligence. While many indigenous cultures around the world maintained basic weaponry, the western world has continued to expand its ability to kill and to do so efficiently. Guns, tanks, fighter planes and nuclear warheads were all seen as signs of progress from the aspect of maintaining military prowess, but the world is as dangerous as its ever been while more and more humans have the power to easily take a life.
The latest improvement on killing potential has been the use of the Predator Drone, an unmanned aerial vehicle used to effortlessly bomb specific targets. President Obama has relied heavily on drone attacks to target “high-value” Taliban and al-Qaeda figures. Our military has praised the use of Predator Drones for their accuracy and the annihilation of hundreds of militants labeled as threats to America. I can’t speculate on the threats these “militants” pose to American citizens, but the fact of the matter is that these unmanned aircraft are aimlessly killing innocent civilians in large numbers. Recent reports have shown that one in three of those killed by drones have been civilians. This is unacceptable and it is disgraceful that our government considers non-U.S. citizens expendable. The reason why Drones have become so popular is because they can kill without putting our soldiers at risk. America carries an aura of arrogance when it comes to the lives of our citizens, but we neglect to consider how many innocent people are massacred in other countries as a result of our wars. 9/11 is a perfect example of our nation’s hubris; there is no doubt that it was a tragic event, but America has been responsible for catastrophes abroad that have been just as reprehensible.
Unfortunately conflicts between human beings will exist well beyond my lifetime. A utopian society free of combat is an unrealistic goal that we are incapable achieving. However there needs to be more of an effort to settle disputes as peacefully as possible, and if there is no alternative we need to refrain from spilling the blood of the innocent at all cost. I’m always upset when I hear about drive-by shootings; the stray bullets always manage to sniff out innocent people like bloodhounds whether or not the intended target is hit. The shooters are cowards, afraid to look the man in the eye they are so determined to kill. Drone attacks are nothing more than glorified drive-by shootings, and our President is no better than the coward sitting in the backseat blindly shooting in the dark.