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Whistleblower drone pilots now threatened by U.S. govt. for speaking out; financial assets frozen as intimidation ratchets up

Drone wars

(NaturalNews) The U.S. government is vindictive, there's no question about that – as four former U.S. Air Force drone pilots, who have spoken out publicly against the administration's drone wars, are discovering.

As reported by The Daily Sheeple and Democracy Now, the drone vets, according to a Nov. 21 tweet from their human rights attorney, Jesselyn Radack, have had their credit cards and bank accounts frozen in recent days, in what appears to be a blatant act of retribution.

That action follows an earlier act of retribution against the mother of one of the former pilots, Brandon Bryant. Newsweek reported a month earlier that shortly after Bryant gave damning testimony to the German Parliament about the U.S. government's drone program, two U.S. Air Force officers showed up at his mother's house in Missoula, Montana, and said she was on an ISIS "hit list."

Newsweek reported further:

"Bryant, now an outspoken critic of the U.S. drone program, left the Air Force after what he described as a moment of moral clarity. 'We were hunting for Anwar al-Awlaki, an American citizen,' he told a German parliamentary inquiry committee last week. 'I suddenly realized that by doing what I was doing I was going against the American Constitution which I had sworn to protect. That was when I decided I had to get out.'"

Bryant told German lawmakers about the integral role the U.S. military base in Ramstein, Germany, plays in the U.S. drone strike program.

"Ramstein is absolutely essential to the U.S. drone program. All information and data go through Ramstein. Everything. For the whole world. Also for the CIA operations," he said.

'Fueled the feelings of hatred'

Indeed, a top secret document obtained by The Intercept, "confirms that the sprawling U.S. military base in Ramstein, Germany serves as the high-tech heart of America's drone program.

"Ramstein is the site of a satellite relay station that enables drone operators in the American Southwest to communicate with their remote aircraft in Yemen, Somalia, Afghanistan and other targeted countries," the investigative news site reported. "The top-secret slide deck, dated July 2012, provides the most detailed blueprint seen to date of the technical architecture used to conduct strikes with Predator and Reaper drones."

And while President Obama and top GOP presidential contenders complain that statements by leading Republican candidate Donald Trump about banning or dramatically restricting travel to the U.S. by Muslims are what fuels hatred of the U.S. and fills the ranks of ISIS, the four former pilots insist that the unrestricted drone program is much more likely to do so.

In fact, they've even put those sentiments on paper, warning that his continued drone war "fueled the feelings of hatred that ignited terrorism and groups like ISIS."

As reported by Democracy Now, which recently interviewed the former pilots:

"They've issued a letter to President Obama warning the U.S. drone program is one of the most devastating driving forces for terrorism. They accuse the administration of lying about the effectiveness of the drone program, saying it is good at killing people—just not the right ones."

Now facing prosecution, former pilots are homeless, broke

The letter is also addressed to Defense Secretary Ashton Carter and CIA Director John O. Brennan.

According to the letter, after the four "succumbed to PTSD" they were released by the military and denied benefits and appropriate mental health care. Some of them, it said, were homeless; all struggled just to get by.

"We witnessed gross waste, mismanagement, abuses of power, and our country's leaders lying publicly about the effectiveness of the drone program," the letter said. "We cannot sit silently by and witness tragedies like the attacks in Paris, knowing the devastating effects the drone program has overseas and at home. Such silence would violate the very oaths we took to support and defend the Constitution."

Now, they face prosecution "by an administration that has been unprecedented in its targeting of government whistleblowers," Democracy Now said on its website.

Read the full letter here.

Listen to their stories here.






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