Victim of Obama’s first drone strike: ‘I am the living example of what drones are’

Faheem Qureshi was 14 when a drone attack on his home left on January 23, 2009 him with horrific injuries, several family members dead and his dreams for the future in tatters.

Qureshi remembers feeling like his body was on fire. He ran outside, wanting to throw water on his face, but his priority was escape. The boy could not see.

Obama, now in the twilight of his presidency, wants to be remembered as a peacemaker. Seven years to the day after the strike, Qureshi has never received so much as an admission from the US that it happened. 

Read the full story by Spencer Ackerman in The Guardian.

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A team of scientists has developed “robot flies” about the size of a quarter that can perch on almost any surface.

The perching works using static electricity. Each drone carries a tiny copper electrode on its head. When the electrode is energized, it creates a static charge that sticks the robot to a surface. Turning off the electrode sends the little drone back into the air.

Perching is important because it makes the robots more energy efficient. Perching is up to a thousand times more energy-efficient than hovering in place, the researchers say.

Read more about roboflies here.

America Dropped 23,000 Bombs Last Year. Here’s Where They Exploded.

American aircraft fired at least 23,144 bombs and missiles in 2015 alone, according to data compiled by Micah Zenko, an expert on U.S. military planning and operations who is a senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations. The Pentagon shows no signs of slowing down the strikes this year: U.S.-led warplanes and drones dropped more than 2,800 bombs in January, recent military statistics show….

But the civilian toll in these attacks can be high, analysts and monitoring groups say. A United Nations report last year alleged that U.S. drone strikes in Yemen had killed more civilians than al Qaeda operatives. In September, an American warplane fired on a charity hospital in northern Afghanistan, killing 30 patients and staff and wounding dozens more.