The International Human Rights and Conflict Resolution Clinic of Stanford Law School and the Global Justice Clinic at New York University School of Law released a report in December entitled: Living Under Drones. The UK charity Reprieve apparently requested the study in order to better serve the Pakistani people; researchers spent nine months doing interviews with locals on the ground, and examining reams of documents. These are the lead sentence headings of their basic findings; recommendations are included, plus much, much more.
First, while civilian casualties are rarely acknowledged by the US government, there is significant evidence that US drone strikes have injured and killed civilians.
Second, US drone strike policies cause considerable and under-accounted-for harm to the daily lives of ordinary civilians, beyond death and physical injury.
Third, publicly available evidence that the strikes have made the US safer overall is ambiguous at best.
Fourth, current US targeted killings and drone strike practices undermine respect for the rule of law and international legal protections and may set dangerous precedents.
In light of these concerns, this report recommends that the US conduct a fundamental re-evaluation of current targeted killing practices, taking into account all available evidence, the concerns of various stakeholders, and the short and long-term costs and benefits.