Letters to the Editor: Killing 10 innocents in a drone strike isn’t a ‘mistake,’ it’s homicide

Mourners at a mass funeral in Kabul on Aug. 30 recite prayers for 10 people killed in a U.S. drone strike.
(Los Angeles Times)

To the editor: What can be said about this reported “mistake” in Afghanistan by our high-tech military? It took the lives of 10 innocent family members, including seven children. The report mentions that a missile launch from an aerial drone was based on flawed military intelligence.


Under the justification of national security since 9/11, several presidents have initiated or maintained military actions in Afghanistan and Iraq for a generation, contributing to violence, destruction and deaths in those countries.


The “lessons” from many years of combat tragedies in Vietnam have been unlearned or long forgotten, even as weapons technology has advanced. Profound questions are unanswered: When we murder the murdering terrorists at all costs, what do we become? Who are the victims?


And when we destroy ordinary people, are we our own terrorist enablers?

Chuck Hackwith, San Clemente


To the editor: Up until now I have been against the proliferation of artificial intelligence. But after reviewing our disastrous exit from Afghanistan, our handling of COVID-19 and now the “mistake” in killing 10 civilians with a drone strike in Afghanistan, I say bring it on.

We certainly seem to have a dearth of intelligence in our human community.

I think the reason we have so much upheaval in the world is because of the realization that our leaders and those in charge have no brains. We now lack trust in those we thought knew how to solve problems.

They simply don’t have a clue, and the realization that we can “guess” as well as they do is unsettling.

Shirley Conley, Gardena


To the editor: “One plus two equals nine” is a mistake. Killing 10 innocent people, including seven children, is homicide. It is not “Oops, my bad.”


Had this atrocity been committed by the Taliban, a vociferous chorus would have sounded for immediate and devastating retribution.

Those involved must be prosecuted.

Mark Stephen Mrotek, Carson


To the editor: Thankfully, The Times had journalists on the scene to investigate the U.S. drone strike that killed an Afghan humanitarian worker and seven of his children plus two other adults.

President Biden needs to pause and reflect on the wisdom of “over the horizon” targeted killings of militants in Afghanistan.

Cecil Hoffman, Pasadena