US predator drone Louie Palu/ZumaPress

¿Se perdió a Yemen por los ataques estadounidenses con drones?

NUEVA YORK – La reciente y dramática crisis en Yemen ha provocado un debate sobre si la administración del presidente estadounidense Barack Obama cometió un error al declarar que su estrategia de lucha contra el terrorismo en dicho país – centrada en ataques con aviones no tripulados o “drones” – es un éxito. En los hechos, tal como muestra un nuevo informe titulado “Muertes causadas por drones”, incluso si la crisis actual no hubiese entrado en erupción, los daños causados por los ataques con aviones estadounidenses no tripulados a los civiles yemenís deberían ser suficientes como para llevar a EE.UU. a repensar su estrategia.

EE.UU. han estado llevando a cabo ataques con drones en Yemen desde al menos el año 2002, y se estima que el número total de ataques se encuentra en un rango de entre 90 a 198. Si bien los gobiernos de Estados Unidos y Yemen han elogiado la focalización precisa de los drones, dichos gobiernos se han negado a revelar detalles clave sobre los ataques, incluyendo el número de ataques llevados a cabo, quiénes fueron los blancos de dichos ataques, o, lo más importante, la cantidad y la identidad de los civiles muertos a consecuencia de los ataques.

En un discurso en el año 2013 en la Universidad Nacional de Defensa, Obama aseguró que, fuera del escenario de la guerra afgana, no se llevaría a cabo ningún ataque con drones, a menos que hubiera “casi certeza de que ningún civil sería asesinado o herido”. (Obama reconoció, en términos generales, que los ataques aéreos de Estados Unidos habían provocado víctimas civiles). El presidente Obama también afirmó que Estados Unidos sólo ataca a “terroristas que representan una amenaza continua e inminente para el pueblo estadounidense”, y que no lanza ataques aéreos con drones cuando tiene “la capacidad de capturar a los terroristas de manera individual”.

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