As time goes by, the world’s opinion on how it sees the drone attacks is undergoing a fundamental change. Some very responsible individuals are no more seeing them as a panacea to end militancy, far from that, options are being considered to charge the Obama administration and the ‘joystick operators’ of the drones for war crimes. The problem with the drones is that they see the targets in black and white missing the grey areas between, as when they kill, they make no discriminations, between sometimes faulty intelligence, even if coming straight from Obama’s kill list.

The recent organisation to express its concern is the UN, whose special rapporteur Ben Emmerson during a speech to the Harvard Law School talked against the particular form of warfare and said that proceedings would begin to see whether it is legal under what he called ‘targeted’ counter-terrorism operations. Instances where the funeral gatherings and other public ceremonies have been bombed out, the attacks could fall under the category of war crimes, he warned. One wishes him Godspeed.

There are of course several ways to fight terrorism, drones being just one of them, which are so far considered in military circles as the most accurate, despite the rate of innocent casualties. Regardless of the rate of casualties, which in the case of drones may be fewer than, say, F16s carpet bombing the area, their illegality as concerns gross invasion of sovereignty is beyond doubt. Pakistan's tacit approval has been frequently cited, but this is not good enough for the people of Pakistan. The nation demands the facts and we hope that the special rapporteur's findings may be the first instance of that.