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Two US Drone Strikes in Yemen for Christmas

Merry Christmas from Yemen! Christmas day was a day of double drone strikes in Yemen, killing five ‘suspected’ militants. The first drone strike killed two people travelling in a vehicle in a southern town, al-Bayda province on Monday. In the second attack, which also occurred on Monday, the unmanned aircraft fired missiles at three people riding on two motorcycles travelling in Hadramout province, killing all three men.

Omar Mash, a Yemeni blogger, tweeted:

@Omar_Mash: ‘Its beginning to look a lot like Christmas.. bombs engraved with ‘MADE IN USA’ rain over Arabia's oldest civilisation’ #Yemen

@Omar_Mash: As Americans take time out to feast and celebrate w their families, let it be known that their Gov is destroying Yemeni families #NoDrones

@Omar_Mash: They stole our revolution, they enforced their version of stability, they make it rain with their bombs from our sky. Merry Xmas from #Yemen

Ibrahim Mothana, a Yemeni activist, also commented:

@imothanaYemen: Two US drone strikes in Yemen today. Should we consider them a Christmas gift?!”

US Air Force General Atomics MQ-1 Predator Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV). Image by Flickr user james_gordon_los_angeles (CC BY-NC 2.0)

US Air Force General Atomics MQ-1 Predator Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV). Image by Flickr user james_gordon_los_angeles (CC BY-NC 2.0)

Glenn Greenwald, a columnist and blogger for the Guardian, replied:

‏@ggreenwald:Not just any gift: from a Nobel laureate! RT @imothanaYemen 2 US drone strikes in Yemen today. Should we consider them a Christmas gift?!

Dr Qais Ghanem tweeted, commenting on a link to an important article by the Washington Post:

@dialogue_979_FM: Whether Saleh & his FM or Hadi & his FM When U.S. drones kill civilians, Yemen’s government tries to conceal it: http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/middle_east/when-us-drones-kill-civilians-yemens-government-tries-to-conceal-it/2012/12/24/bd4d7ac2-486d-11e2-8af9-9b50cb4605a7_story.html … #drone

‏Sam Waddah pragmatically posted on his Facebook page:

While Santa Claus is distributing gifts in the West, Obama is sending drone strikes to Yemen! Another drone strike hits Yemeni soil today!
I strongly believe that the problem is not with the US administration striking drones, but rather with our government approving of them!
Drone strikes decreased in Pakistan by 41% in 2011 and another 40% in 2012 because the Pakistani government started to disapprove of them! On the other hand, US drone strikes in Yemen have increased by 240% in 2011, and another 250% in 2012, simply because our president approves of them!
Unless our government values Yemeni blood and opposes drone strikes, Obama Claus will keep increasingly bringing us drones in 2013 and so forth!
We are victims of our leaders, more than we are of the US!

Much has been written, tweeted, and blogged by Yemenis venting their anger at Obama and the US administration for the continuous US strikes, yet their own president approves those drone strikes. Who should be blamed more for the injustice of it all?

This is just one of many series of posts about US drone strikes in Yemen and it certainly and sadly will not be the last.

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