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HomeNewsPentagon plan goals to cut back civilian casualties brought on by airstrikes

Pentagon plan goals to cut back civilian casualties brought on by airstrikes


The Pentagon on Thursday launched a plan to cut back civilian casualties ensuing from airstrikes and different delicate army operations, as high U.S. protection officers face mounting stress to interrupt a sample of lethal errors.

The plan envisions embedding risk-mitigation specialists in army operations facilities all through the world, establishing a “heart of excellence” to advertise finest practices, and instituting oversight from the best ranges of the Protection Division. It additionally goals to enhance information assortment and evaluation to raised monitor and handle the issue.

“It’s not that we haven’t taken civilian hurt mitigation under consideration previously,” mentioned Air Drive Brig. Gen. Patrick Ryder, the Pentagon press secretary. “It’s simply making an attempt to use a constant strategy throughout the division in order that this turns into a matter of how we do enterprise.” Ryder referred to as the trouble “a direct reflection of U.S. values in addition to a strategic and ethical crucial.”

The Pentagon has taken fireplace for assaults that left harmless bystanders or unintended targets lifeless or wounded, incidents, critics argue, that might have been averted. Such occasions embody the Aug. 27, 2021, drone strike that killed 10 civilians, together with seven youngsters, in Kabul and accusations that the Pentagon tried to cowl up civilian deaths throughout a strike on Islamic State adherents in Syria — claims the Pentagon rejected.

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The plan launched Thursday doesn’t handle particular person incidents. However in keeping with a senior protection official, who spoke on the situation of anonymity beneath phrases set by the Pentagon, previous episodes did inform the modifications it outlines.

Particular consideration might be given to addressing cognitive bias or erroneously deciphering proof in a means that confirms one’s suspicions and lowering the chance of goal misidentification, the official mentioned. The Pentagon additionally needs to make sure that, as a part of its commonplace processes, assault plans posing undue dangers to civilians are completely gut-checked earlier than they’re unleashed.

The danger-mitigation plans will apply not solely when firing a missile or dropping bombs, but in addition when conducting cyber strikes and different operations carried out outdoors of “the deadly area,” the official mentioned.

The purpose is to “assist commanders and operators higher perceive the civilian surroundings earlier than operations start,” the official added.

The Pentagon expects to activate its heart of excellence inside the coming fiscal 12 months, and start implementing threat mitigation as a part of common army coaching utilizing present sources. To achieve full capability will contain further congressional appropriations, the official mentioned.

The Pentagon envisions the middle of excellence would require a workers of about 30, and that the complete program would require about 150 positions throughout the army. The official estimated that the price range required to execute the plans can be within the tens of hundreds of thousands of {dollars} — a small proportion of annual protection spending.



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