Reflections On "Pushing the Wrong Button" and US Drone Policy
ABC News reports an [emergency alert notification] (http://wnep.com/2018/01/13/wrong-button-pushed-during-shift-change-blamed-for-false-hawaii-missile-alert/) sent out on Saturday claiming a “ballistic missile threat inbound to Hawaii” was a false alarm caused by an employee pressing the “wrong button” during a shift change, according to Hawaii Gov. David Ige.
“BALLISTIC MISSILE THREAT INBOUND TO HAWAII. SEEK IMMEDIATE SHELTER. THIS IS NOT A DRILL,” the initial emergency alert read.
False Alarm Timeline
“I know first-hand how today’s false alarm affected all of us here in Hawaii, and I am sorry for the pain and confusion it caused. I, too, am extremely upset about this and am doing everything I can do to immediately improve our emergency management systems, procedures and staffing,” said Gov. David Ige.
- 8:05 a.m. – A routine internal test during a shift change was initiated. This was a test that involved the Emergency Alert System, the Wireless Emergency Alert, but no warning sirens.
- 8:07 a.m. – A warning test was triggered statewide by the State Warning Point, HI-EMA.
- 8:10 a.m. – State Adjutant Maj. Gen. Joe Logan, validated with the U.S. Pacific Command that there was no missile launch.
- Honolulu Police Department notified of the false alarm by HI-EMA.
- 8:13 a.m. – State Warning Point issues a cancellation of the Civil Danger Warning Message. This would have prevented the initial alert from being rebroadcast to phones that may not have received it yet. For instance, if a phone was not on at 8:07 a.m., if someone was out of range and has since came into cell coverage (Hikers, Mariners, etc.) and/or people getting off a plane.
- 8:20 a.m. – HI-EMA issues public notification of cancellation via their Facebook and Twitter accounts.
- 8:24 a.m. – Governor Ige retweets HI-EMA’s cancellation notice.
- 8:30 a.m. – Governor posts cancellation notification to his Facebook page.
- 8:45 a.m. – After getting authorization from FEMA Integral Public Alert and Warning System, HI-EMA issued a “Civil Emergency Message” remotely.
- 9:30 a.m.: Governor makes initial media notification.
- 9:34 a.m.: Governor’s message posted to his Facebook and Twitter accounts.
At 8:45 a retraction was issued.It took another 15 minutes for the Governor to make a media notification.
Somehow it takes "authorization" from FEMA to issue a retraction but anyone is capable of pushing the wrong button during a routine shift change.
Some people panicked following the announcement. A video of parents putting their kids in a storm drain has gone viral.
Civilian Terror from Obama's Drones
As we reflect on the "horrors" of people putting their kinds in storm drains in Hawaii, we should also reflect on a New Stanford/NYU study that documents the Civilian Terror from Obama's Drones.
Noting that even funerals of drone victims have been targeted under Obama, the report documents that the US has "made family members afraid to attend funerals". The result of this tactic is as predictable as it is heinous:
"Secondary strikes have discouraged average civilians from coming to one another's rescue, and even inhibited the provision of emergency medical assistance from humanitarian workers."
All the way back in 2004, the Rumsfeld Pentagon commissioned a study to determine the causes of anti-US terrorism, and even it concluded: "Muslims do not 'hate our freedom,' but rather, they hate our policies." Running around the world beating your chest, bellowing "we're at war!", and bombing multiple Muslim countries does not keep one safe. It manifestly does the opposite, since it ensures that even the most rational people will calculate that targeting Americans with violence in response is just and necessary to deter further aggression.
Recall the words of the attempted Times Square bomber, Pakistani-American Faisal Shahzad, at his sentencing hearing when the federal judge presiding over his case, Miriam Goldman Cedarbaum, asked incredulously how he could possibly use violence that he knew would result in the deaths even of innocent children -- as though she were literally unaware that her own government continuously does exactly that:
"'Well, the drone hits in Afghanistan and Iraq, they don't see children, they don't see anybody. They kill women, children, they kill everybody. It's a war, and in war, they kill people. They're killing all Muslims' . . . .
"'I am part of the answer to the U.S. terrorizing the Muslim nations and the Muslim people. And, on behalf of that, I'm avenging the attack. Living in the United States, Americans only care about their own people, but they don't care about the people elsewhere in the world when they die.'"
US Drone Policy
Glenn Greenwald wrote that article in September of 2012.
Our high-level drone strike efficiency is about 2% according to the report. That was an acceptable percentage for Obama and presumably for Trump as well.
Is it any wonder people hate the US? If you lost your 3-year old son or daughter to a US drone wouldn't you hate the US too?
Most in the US does not know what terror is. Nor do US citizens know how much terror and hatred worldwide is a direct result of US foreign policy.
Instead, we are shocked at the thought of putting kids in storm drains over false alarms.
Mike "Mish" Shedlock