President Trump Approves CIA Use of Drones in a Military Role

President Trump has granted the CIA permission to carry out drone attacks against suspected terrorists, breaking with previous policy and potentially reigniting contentious discussions between the intelligence agency and Pentagon officials, according to a report.

But U.S. officials told The Wall Street Journal on Monday that Trump secretly overhauled that policy shortly after his January 21 speech at the Central Intelligence Agency headquarters in Virginia - and human rights groups claim the covert order could have troublesome effects on transparency and accountability.

Former President Barack Obama had halted U.S. drone strikes in the last eight month of his administration.

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The CIA has reportedly been given the power by President Trump to launch drone strikes against suspected terrorists.

The CIA generally refuses to confirm or deny carrying out any drone strikes, and thus never accounts for who did or didn't get killed.

Regardless of what eventually happens in the upcoming months, this possible change illustrates just how important it is to keep individuals like Trump from obtaining more power over the US national defense system without participation from Congress - and without holding a national debate first.

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The CIA and the White House have not yet responded to the authenticity of the news report.

Strikes by missile-armed Predator and Reaper drones against oversea targets began under President George W. Bush and were expanded by Obama. The Pentagon had to report that publicly. The pretense of concern for civilians being blown to pieces as "collateral damage" inflicted by drone strikes was meant merely to provide a "humanitarian" cover for cold-blooded assassinations and massacres.

According to Savage, "Mr. Trump is also expected to sign off soon on a similar Pentagon proposal to designate parts of Somalia to be another such battlefield-style zone for 180 days, removing constraints on airstrikes and raids targeting people suspected of being militants with the Qaeda-linked group the Shabab, [the officials] said". The Department of Defense has confirmed in January that ISIS has used improvised drones to strike at US -backed coalition forces fighting in Mosul. The CIA requires a target be certified with "near certainty" while the military uses the standard of "reasonable certainty". "The CIA should be a foreign intelligence gathering and analysis organization - not a paramilitary one". In July, Washington admitted to the unintentional deaths of about 116 civilians from nations not at war with the US, due to drone attacks.

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