US Air Force MQ-9 "Reaper" drone aircraft/AP
By Michael Winter, USA TODAY
Responding to revelations that President Obama has an official "kill list" of suspected terrorists, spoofers calling themselves the "National Agency for Ethical Drone-Human Interactions" have launched an online "Do Not Kill Registry," Slashdot tells us.
The ersatz agency says it was "founded in September 2001" to "monitor and regulate the use of drones both domestically and internationally."
"Adding your name to the registry will assist us in avoiding accidental casualties in our mission to make the world a safe place for Democracy and Free Enterprise," the registry site says.
The registry is NEDHI's "first public program":
While the use of drones is intentionally not bound by international treaties or constitutional limits, we simultaneously understand the urgent need to develop and enforce new ethical frameworks as drone use becomes more commonplace as a tool of U.S. foreign policy. Through an active collaboration between N.E.D.H.I., the brave pilots and operators of the U.S. drone program, and the American public, we believe that we can find the political and moral solutions needed to both protect the security of the United States while also satisfying the concerns of the broader global community.
The Do Not Kill Registry, our first public program, has started us on that path towards new solutions and will help give people around the world the peace of mind urgently needed during these times of escalating drone conflict. While what the future holds for the U.S. drone program remains uncertain, you can rest safely knowing that we will continue to diligently review and monitor the national drone kill list in order to ensure proper cautionary measures are taken while also continuing to take advantage of the military effectiveness of targeted drone strikes on militants around the world.
There is one big caveat: Signing up "does not guarantee that you will not be the target of a drone strike but only that an additional review process will be undertaken before you are labeled an enemy militant and added to the national kill list."
Would Dr. Strangelove approve?
Since the site went live last Tuesday, more than 12,000 people have visited the registry, with "over 1,000 actually signed up," the site's "operator" told On Deadline in an e-mail. The project was designed with the help of San Francisco Bay Area artist/programmer Ian Alan Paul, known for "experiments in politics, art & technology."
Two weeks ago, news trickled out that Obama, counterterrorism adviser John Brennan and Gen. James Cartwright approved and disapproved drone strikes against suspected al-Qaeda militants or other terrorists.
As a result of those revelations, plus details of cyber-attacks against Iran's nuclear program, Attorney General Eric Holder opened an investigation into leaks of classified information.