Do drone strikes create more terrorists than they kill?

Journalist Glenn Greenwald debates Professor Christine Fair on the effectiveness of the US drone programme.

Nearly 90 percent of people killed by US drone strikes in Afghanistan during a five-month period were civilians. That is according to an investigation of leaked documents, published by The Intercept, called, The Drone Papers

US President Barack Obama said in May 2013, “Before any strike is taken, there must be near-certainty that no civilians will be killed or injured.” But, the cache of secret documents suggest strikes are often carried out based on thin evidence and the majority of those killed are not the intended targets. 

The government defends the programme, saying it is needed to “act against terrorists who pose a continuing and imminent threat to the American people”, but some, including Robert Grenier, the former head of CIA counterterrorism center, argue the US is “creating more enemies than [it is] removing from the battlefield”. 

So, do drone strikes create more terrorists than they kill? In this week’s Arena, Glenn Greenwald, co-founder of The Intercept, debates Georgetown University Associate Professor Christine Fair.

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