Former Drone Operator: Children Killed by Drones Were Called 'Fun-Sized Terrorists'
In an interview with Democracy Now! on Friday night, Nov. 20, former drone operator Michael Haas, one of the signers of the powerful letter opposing the drone killings, detailed the hideous policy and behavior toward killing civilians by remote control. Haas told interviewer Amy Goodman, “the term 'fun-sized terrorists' was used to just sort of denote children that we'd see on screen.” Haas then elaborated,
“Other terms we'd use would be 'cutting the grass before it grows too long,' just doing whatever you can to try to make it easier to kill whatever's on screen. And the culture is, that mentality is very much nurtured within the drone community, because these,— every Hellfire shot is sort of lauded and applauded, and we don't really examine who exactly was killed, but just that it was an effective shot and the missile hit its target.”
Haas is one of the drone operator whistleblowers who appears in the documentary, “Drone,” which opened at the AMC theater in Manhattan on Nov. 20 and will be playing this week in New York City and Toronto, Canada.
The movie team is running a high profile campaign to build support for stopping the drone murders. On Friday night, Jeremy Scahill, one of the founders of The Intercept that published the “Drone Papers” secret documents, appeared with the film's director, Tonje Hessen Schei, and former drone operator Brandon Bryant following the 7 PM screening. On Saturday afternoon and evening, Bryant appeared again, first with the attorney for the whistleblowers, Jesselyn Radack, and then with the film's producers for a question and answer session.
On the film's website, dronethedocumentary.com, an advertisement quotes Lawrence Wilkerson, Colonel U.S. Army (retired): “Our potential collective future. Watch it and weep for us. Or watch it and determine to change that future.” Wilkerson is the former aide to Colin Powell in the Bush/Cheney administration, who is an outspoken and frequent opponent of the perpetual war policy of both Bush and Obama, and who gave a lengthy interview to EIR in 2011.
Two other films exposing the drone program are also circulating. A 2013 documentary called, “Unmanned: The Drone Wars,” features interviews with victims of the drone attacks, including the brother of the innocent 16-year old Pakistani boy, Tariq Aziz. “Good Kill” (2014), a Hollywood movie starring Ethan Hawke, is a fictionalized account of the psychological breakdown of a drone operator who questions his role.