1 Jun 2012

Every drone strike personally approved by Obama

6:01 am on 1 June 2012

US President Barack Obama personally approves every single drone strike against suspected terrorists, so he can take full moral responsibility for the deaths these cause.

The New York Times reports a regular, video conference meeting with 100 participants is held regularly to decide the names to be put on a "kill list": the next suspected terrorists to be targeted.

The president has increased the use of unmanned drones, which are now a key weapon in the fight against Al Qaeda. They are a doctrine of warfare.

The Times article paints Mr Obama as tough and strong, willing to take hard decisions and kill America's enemies.

The BBC reports drones are the president's weapon of choice and the White House has stressed that he takes extraordinary measures to try to avoid civilian casualties.

The Times article quotes the president's national security adviser Tom Donilon as saying:

''He is determined that he will make these decisions about how far and wide these operations will go … he's determined to keep the tether pretty short.''