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Targeted KillingsLaw and Morality in an Asymmetrical World$
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Claire Finkelstein, Jens David Ohlin, and Andrew Altman

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199646470

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199646470.001.0001

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ARE TARGETED KILLINGS UNLAWFUL? A CASE STUDY IN EMPIRICAL CLAIMS WITHOUT EMPIRICAL EVIDENCE

ARE TARGETED KILLINGS UNLAWFUL? A CASE STUDY IN EMPIRICAL CLAIMS WITHOUT EMPIRICAL EVIDENCE

Chapter:
(p.326) 12 ARE TARGETED KILLINGS UNLAWFUL? A CASE STUDY IN EMPIRICAL CLAIMS WITHOUT EMPIRICAL EVIDENCE
Source:
Targeted Killings
Author(s):

Gregory S. McNeal

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199646470.003.0013

Critics of the U.S. policy of targeted killing by unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs or drones) generally lack credible information to justify their critiques. In fact, in many instances their claims are easily refuted, calling into question the reliability of their criticism. This chapter highlights some of the most striking examples of inaccurate claims raised by critics of the U.S. policy of drone-based targeted killing. Specifically, it offers a much-needed corrective to clarify the public record or offer empirical nuance where targeted killing critics provide only unsubstantiated and conclusory statements of fact and law. The chapter is organized as follows. Section I discusses the decision protocol used by the U.S. military before launching a drone strike, a process that goes to extraordinary lengths to minimize civilian casualties. Section II addresses the critics' unsubstantiated claims about the legal, diplomatic, and strategic results of drone strikes.

Keywords:   targeted killing, US policy, unmanned aerial vehicles, drone strike

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