US Drone Attacks Kill 18 Militants in Pakistan Amid Tensions
October 2, 2010
(ChattahBox World News)—The Obama administration has stepped up unmanned drone attacks against militants seeking refuge in Pakistan along the Afghanistan border, as tensions mount with the Pakistanis over civilian casualties. On Saturday, after two separate drone attacks, a reported 18 militants were killed. During the month of September the U.S. has launched a record 21 drone attacks against militants.
Saturday’s strikes did not come without a cost. In response to NATO helicopters entering Pakistan, the Pakistani military closed off a critical NATO supply route to Afghanistan in retaliation, after three Pakistani soldiers were killed.
And making matters worse, the Taliban are actively engaged in attacking NATO supply vehicles en route to Afghanistan.
The New York Times writes:
“On Saturday, two drone attacks within hours of each other killed 18 militants in Datta Khel town in North Waziristan tribal region along the Afghan border, intelligence officials said.”
“In the first attack two missiles were fired at a house while in the second attack four missiles targeted a house and a vehicle. The death toll in the two attacks reached 18,” said one intelligence official. At least six foreigners were killed in the first strike.”
Although Pakistani officials publicly condemn the drone attacks, the NY Times points out, the attacks and the intelligence needed to carry them out would not be possible, without the consent and cooperation of the government.
“Elimination of high-profile targets could not be possible without Pakistani intelligence, however, analysts say.”
Photo Source: U.S. Army/U.S. Army Sgt. Michael Espejo, 66th Military Police Company stationed out of Fort Lewis, Wash., pulls security at the Pakistani border at Torkham Gate during the Afghan Independence Day ceremonies, Aug. 19. U.S. Army photo by Pfc. Daniel M. Rangel.