World
Sun Feb 09, 2020 1:30
Former American Drone Operator: US Military 'Worse Than Nazis'
TEHRAN (FNA)- A former US drone operator is speaking out against the atrocities he says he was forced to inflict during his time in the armed forces and says the American military as “worse than the Nazis”.

Brandon Bryant was enlisted in the US Air Force for six years. During his time with the military, he operated Predator drones, remotely firing missiles at targets more than 7,000 miles away from the small room containing his workspace near Las Vegas, Nevada, according to The Independent.

Bryant stated that he reached his breaking point with the US military after killing a child in Afghanistan that his superiors told him was “a dog”.

Bryant recalled the moment: After firing a Hellfire missile at a building containing his target, he saw a child exit the building just as the missile struck. When he alerted his superiors about the situation after reviewing the tape, he was told “it was a f***ing dog, drop it”.

Following that incident, Bryant quit the military and began speaking out against the drone program.

During his time in the Air Force, Bryant estimates he contributed directly to killing 13 people himself and says his squadron fired on 1,626 targets including women and children.

He notes he has been left suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder.   

Bryant added that he saw the man he targeted bleed out from his legs and watched as his body went cold on his thermal imaging screen.

“The smoke clears, and there’s pieces of the two guys around the crater. And there’s this guy over here, and he’s missing his right leg above his knee. He’s holding it, and he’s rolling around, and the blood is squirting out of his leg … It took him a long time to die. I just watched him,” Bryant said in an interview with GQ.

“That image on the screen is still in my head. Whenever I think about it, it still hurts me,” Mr. Bryant stated, adding, “When I pulled the trigger, I knew that it was wrong. When the middle struck I knew in my soul I had become a murderer.”

Other airmen in Bryant’s squadron celebrated his first kill, saying “Brant’s popped his cherry”.

Bryant was enlisted from 2006 to 2011, working as a sensor operator, which helps direct missiles to their targets. 

In a conversation with the Roots Action Network, Bryant recalled an instance early in his enlistment where he and his fellow drone operators were shown a video montage of drone strikes, after which they were told their jobs were to “kill people and break things”.

“It went against everything that I had ever learned about honor and justice and training. It was terrifying how dismissive people were about the whole affair. We were safe in the US and those over there were not. We win. But that’s not how it goes,” Bryant added.

Bryant noted that despite his misgivings about the program, his superiors used punitive measures and mockery to keep him in line.

“It broke my spirit. It went against everything I learned about being a warrior, about holding yourself to higher standards. My superiors psychologically beat me and ridiculed me to keep me in line. They took away my free time and forced me to sit in a seat or be tried under the UCMJ (Uniform Code of Military Justice) for disobeying orders,” he undrlined, adding, “In a sense, it was my prison. I served my time to learn and reflect. And so I hold the key now, to the entire apparatus. I just don’t know what to do with it.”

He has underscored that the US military is “worse than the Nazis” because “we should know better”.

Bryant said he and his family have been threatened for speaking out against the drone program and that he has lost friends and been estranged from other members of his family over his whistle-blowing.

Ultimately Bryant wants the public to understand the dehumanizing effect of the drone program on the operators and the individuals targeted.

“I would want people to know, beyond its existence, the consequences it has on us as a species to delineate our power into something so easily destructive. Every time we get closer to that edge, we’re going to have to realize where it places us,” Bryant added.

 

 

 

 

 

Bottom top
Scientific Centers Striving to Help Nationwide Campaign against Coronavirus

TEHRAN (FNA)- Iranian knowledge-based firms are making strenuous efforts to manufacture a variety of medical and hygiene items in a bid to contribute to the national combat against the COVID-19.
Basij Organization of Tehran’s Guilds Making 500 Thousand Masks Per Day

TEHRAN (FNA)- Tehran’s guilds and economic activists produce half a million face masks every day, Head of the Basij Organization of Tehran’s Guilds, Gholamreza Hassanpour said on Saturday.
Tehran, Barcelona Mull Sharing Experiences in Fighting Coronavirus

TEHRAN (FNA)- Tehran Municipality exchanged views with Barcelona on technological experiences in the combat against COVID-19.
Rouhani Orders Reopening Tourism, Handicrafts Centers

TEHRAN (FNA)- Iranian President Hassan Rouhani ordered the country's Minister of Cultural Heritage and Tourism to prepare the necessary health instructions for reopening tourism and handicrafts centers with the cooperation of the Health Committee of the National Task Force for Fighting Coronavirus.
New COVID-19 Diagnosis Lab Launched in Southeast Iran

TEHRAN (FNA)- Second Coronavirus Diagnosis laboratory has been launched in Chabahar, Sistan-Balouchestan Province, Southeast of Iran, a local official said on Saturday.
EUROPE ERUPTS: Furious Protests See Black Lives Matter Shut down EU Capitals as Ban Defied

TEHRAN (FNA)- Furious Europeans took to the street this week to protest against police brutality and racism, following the death of George Floyd in the US, as major capitals across the EU were shut down by the protesters.
'Forced to Kiss Her Feet': Sara Netanyahu's Former Housemaid Reveals Abuse at Israeli PM's House

TEHRAN (FNA)- One of the former housemaids of Israeli Prime Minister’s wife Sara Netanyahu spoke out about the abuse she faced while working for her, recalling moments she was forced to kiss her feet.
Libya: GNA Forces Regain Control of Strategic Bani Walid Town

TEHRAN (FNA)- Libya's Government of National Accord (GNA) recaptured the strategic town of Bani Walid in the country's Northwest from the forces of renegade military commander Khalifa Haftar.
Syrians Protest Against US-Backed SDF Militants in Hasaka

TEHRAN (FNA)- Syrians staged a protest in Northeastern Hasaka province to condemn the presence of the so-called Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), a US-backed anti-Damascus alliance of mainly Kurdish militants.
Official: Knowledge-Based Companies in Iran Able to Produce 1mln Anti-Coronavirus Masks

TEHRAN (FNA)- A senior official at Iran's Ministry for Science, Research and Technology said on Saturday that the country's knowledge-based companies enjoy the capability to produce 1mln masks every day as part of the nationwide campaign against the coronavirus outbreak.
Russia’s Coronavirus Cases Pass 458,000

TEHRAN (FNA)- The number of COVID-19 cases in Russia has risen by 8,855 to 458,689, the anti-coronavirus crisis center announced on Saturday.
Security Official: US Plots against Iran Foiled by Michael White's Freedom

TEHRAN (FNA)- A senior Iranian security official announced that freedom of Michael White, an American national who was jailed in Iran on security charges, thwarted the US officials' plots to use his possible death of a chronic disease to pressure the Islamic Republic.
Iran Identifies 2,269 New Coronavirus Cases, Reports over 132,000 Recoveries

TEHRAN (FNA)- The Iranian health ministry announced on Saturday that 2,269 new cases of infection to coronavirus have been diagnosed in the country in the past 24 hours, noting that over 132,000 patients have recovered.
Iran’s Police Underlines Promotion of Police Ties with Spain

TEHRAN (FNA)- Chairman of the Iranian Interpol Brigadier General Hadi Shirzad conferred with Spanish envoy to Tehran Eduardo López Busquets on the development of police diplomacy relations between Tehran and Madrid.
Trump Clashes with Black Female Reporter Again Who Asks About Unemployment Rates

TEHRAN (FNA)- US President Donald Trump clashed with reporters on Friday during a press conference that featured him ignoring questions and telling a black journalist she is "something" when she asked about rising minority unemployment rates.