The Number of U.S. Airstrikes Skyrocket, Along with Civilian Casualties

By Vaughn Hoisington | UNITED STATES

Donald Trump has become the new “Drone King.”

Since President Trump has been in office, more U.S. led air strikes have been performed than ever before. Afghanistan received twice as many air strikes in 2017, as it did the previous year, and Yemen was struck more in 2017 than the entirety of the four previous years.

The increased amount of strikes is an outcome of Trump relaxing Obama-era drone strike restrictions, and U.S. military commanders being granted complete authorization to make complex decisions pertaining to military operations.

Drone Strikes are nowhere near perfect, due to civilian casualties. It has been reported that the number of civilian casualties is only getting worse, with a 50% increase in civilian casualties occurring in Afghanistan as a result of strikes.

During the 29 months that Obama was leading the United States Military in the war against ISIS, the nonprofit aerial warfare monitoring organization, Airwars, estimated that there were anywhere between 2298-3398 civilian deaths as a result of U.S. led coalition air strikes in Iraq and Syria.

Under Trump’s leadership, that record was broken within a year. The minimum number of civilian casualties from Iraq and Syria rose to 3,749, as of January 30.

For comparison, Iraq Body Count has determined that the number of civilians killed by ISIS in Iraq alone from the beginning of 2014 to February of 2017 was about 26,667.

Image from Newsweek.