#AceWorldNews says that Al-Qaeda militants have shot dead a man in south-eastern Yemen for allegedly giving the US information used to carry out drone strikes, Reuters reported.
The man was found shot dead on a football pitch in the town of Shahr in Hadramout province, residents said.
He was reportedly captured a year ago and accused of working for American intelligence and helping to guide drone strikes in 2012 and 2013.
One on Dec. 25, 2012 killed five Islamist militants, SITE monitoring service said.
#AceWorldNews says that a US drone strike in northern Yemen on Wednesday killed four suspected Al-Qaeda members, a military official said.
The unmanned aircraft fired two rockets at a vehicle in the Khalka area of Jawf province, AFP reported.
Ali Juraym, a local militant chief, who had fought in Iraq, was reportedly among those killed.
The US military operates all drones flying over Yemen in support of Sanaa’s campaign against Al-Qaeda.
#AceSocialNews says that Facebook is reportedly in talks to take over an American-based aerospace company, and if so the social networking site could soon have its fleet of drones delivering the internet to currently unconnected people across the world.
TechCrunch was the first website to report this week on rumors that Mark Zuckerberg’s Facebook is interesting in acquiring Titan Aerospace — a deal that is believed to be worth as much as $60 million.
But while that hefty sum is not exactly chump change, it’s just a fraction of what Facebook has spent on other acquisitions recently: Facebook bought mobile photo app Instagram for $1 billion in cash and stock in 2012, and only weeks ago forked over nineteen-times that to acquire the rights to the WhatsApp program.
This time, however, Facebook could be getting its hands on some drones, and ideally harnessing the abilities of those unmanned aerial vehicles to bring the internet to the estimated 2.7 billion people currently without access.
Titan Aerospace is responsible for making near-orbital, solar-powered drones, and TechCrunch says Facebook could be spending millions of dollars to acquire the company and get around 11,000 of those small UAVs in return.
According to TechCrunch, Facebook’s new arsenal would be composed of Titan’s “Solara 60” UAVs, an aircraft that can carry a payload of 250 pounds apiece.
On the Titan website, the company explains that these drones can be used for anything from weather monitoring to disaster recovery to earth imaging, and provides customers with “easy access to real-time high-resolution images of the earth, voice and data services, and other atmospheric-based sensor systems.”
RT – TechCrunch – #ASN2014
#AceWorldNews says that an interview with RT reveals thoughts on Drones by former Pentagon official Michael Maloof.
EU legislation banning the use of drones won’t diminish the number of drone attacks, it will just be much more selective in terms of where they can be used, former Pentagon official Michael Maloof told RT.
A number of European parliaments have voted in favour of a proposed EU ban on American drone strikes, which have resulted in massive casualties among the civilian population, and also demanded from the US more transparency.
The new legislation is to put more pressure on such states as Germany and Britain who are closely involved into the US drone operations.
RT: The EU’s bill banning drone attacks covers strikes outside of war zones, like in Yemen and Pakistan, as well as attacks in combat zones that violate international laws. So what kinds of strikes can still be carried out under these guidelines?
Michael Maloof: The resolution reflects the will of a lot of people around the world on the use of drones because so many innocent people have been killed. While it reflects the sympathetic sentiment, the reality is that drone strikes are still going to continue.
I think what it’s suggesting at least is that if you are going to use drones and designate it and be legal about it, you go to the UN Security Council and ask for it.
And that does not appear to be the case either for the US, or for Germany or the UK, which are very eager to sell drones to the US and, in fact, have participated in some of their activities. I think it’s going to raise some problems for the UK and Germany. The US probably will ignore it.
But the reality is that people are very upset that this is happening. The area has to be designated as a warzone, as I understand the resolution, but when you consider drones that are now being used from Pakistan to Yemen, perhaps into Somalia and into the Maghreb and North Africa, those areas have not been designated as the warzones because you deal with transnational terrorist activity.
So this raises a dilemma and I think the UN is going to have to address this problem in very short order.
RT: So far, the UK and Germany have resisted citing national security as their motive for involvement in US strikes. Facing increased scrutiny following this vote, what reasons might they cite to validate their actions now?
MM: I think the concern they might have from a national standpoint is the potential threat of terrorism into Europe itself coming in from the Maghreb and North Africa. Those countries are becoming increasingly restive over that fact and also Britain has been concerned about Pakistan and the TTP, and also the fact that many Pakistanis are coming out of the UK and fighting in Pakistan and Afghanistan. Consequently this is going to pose some serious national issues for Germany and the UK especially.
RT: The US has been carrying out drone strikes for years. With this new legislation now, how do you think it is going to end up? Will there be more territories called warzones?
MM: I think it’s not going to diminish it. The reality is while it expresses sentiments of concern about killing innocent people and many thousands have been killed, drone strikes are going to continue. The use of drones is really going to be the new 6th-generation type of warfare that the US instigated, initiated, and we are seeing other countries quickly adapting that process.
And I don’t think it is going to diminish at all, it will require being much more selective in the use of drones and where they can be used and indeed the UN is going to have to deal with this transnational problem of terrorism, which is a subject and rather an object of drone strikes.
It’s potentially a serious problem to come.
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of Ace News Group or RT News.
#AceWorldNews says a Yemeni farmer was killed Thursday by a US drone strike witnesses described as an attack intended for suspected militants in South Eastern Yemen, Reuters reported. Witnesses claim the farmer was killed by the shrapnel propelling from two rockets fired by the drone early Thursday morning as he walked in the village of Al-Houta. A local government official confirmed the report. Last month, at least 15 people were killed and five others wounded by a US drone strike on a wedding party in Central Yemen. The party was mistaken for an Al-Qaeda convoy.