Volume L – Number 1

Jake Loewner

Abstract: United States policymakers have set strict standards on the parameters of drone use. They have thereby lain out before the public an idealized narrative of the effectiveness of drones, as well as the restraint with which they are used. Beyond this lofty rhetoric, however, the U.S. government has been incredibly reluctant to furnish information on its drone program. To complicate matters further, the rhetoric on the drone program put out by the administration is rarely corroborated by facts on the ground due to frequent civilian deaths, signature strikes, and the targeting of Americans. This piece analyzes the realities of the drone program against the backdrop of the idealized rhetoric laid out by the Obama Administration and finds that the rhetoric is not supported by the facts on the ground. As such, the piece argues for increased transparency and more effective human intelligence to be applied to the drone program.

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