On the morning of March 19 I clicked on the “Morning Joe” show on MSNBC to see what was going on.  I was surprised and pleased to hear Joe Scarborough, the show’s host, say that drone warfare “is sold as clean warfare when it’s actually just the opposite.”

Scarborough has spoken skeptically before about drone killing, but the line of his March 19 commentary was the strongest I’ve heard.  His remarks were prompted by his discussion with guest Andrew Cockburn, author of “Kill Chain, the Rise of High Tech Assassins”, and they may mean that the sheen is wearing off drone killing for more and more people.  See:

Drone war also took a hit from the April 13 New York Times article reporting that a study by the Open Society Justice Initiative found that “the Obama administration has not followed its own rules to avoid civilian casualties and is setting a dangerous example for other countries that want to use unmanned aircraft against terrorists.”

It is extremely disappointing, however, that the Open Society recommendations do not call for an end to drone killing and all targeted killing.  Rather the first recommendation is: “Ensure that U.S. targeted killings in Yemen comply with international law.”