Their interp turns the targeted killing area into regulating any type of drone use—massively expands both the amount of topical affs and the lit base we have to research
Mellor 13—Ewan E. Mellor – European University Institute [“Why policy relevance is a moral necessity: Just war theory, impact, and UAVs,” Paper Prepared for BISA Conference 2013]
Despite some of the problems with the specific figures, an impressive amount of research has been done by scholars and journalists on the policies related to the use of drones and this research provides a basis for judging these policies in the light of the principles of the just war tradition. To begin with it is necessary to disaggregate the types of drone strikes that are carried out, as they have different implications and raise different questions.
The first, and perhaps best known, types of strike are the personality strikes.24 These are strikes on a specific individual who is being targeted due to evidence linking them directly to militant activity. Whilst these are often portrayed as strikes on senior leaders or individuals involved in important terrorist operations, the evidence suggests that the majority of those targeted are low level members with little role in ongoing operations.25 Whilst these low level members may be legitimate targets under the laws of armed conflict, they would not be under international human rights law. Even under the laws of armed conflict questions arise regarding the proportionality of such strikes.
The second typeof attack is the signature strike. These strikes targetunknown and unidentified individuals based on a pattern of activity that is believed to be associatedwith membership of a militant organisation.26 The US has never acknowledged these types of strikes and has never detailed the criteria for assessing whether behaviour is suspicious enough to warrant targeting and killing; however, the joke within the US State Department that if the CIA saw three men exercising in a field they would consider it a terrorist training camp suggests that there were concerns within the administration that the criteria were not discriminating enough.27
The third type of attack is the double-tap strike. In these attacks a drone will attack a target on the basis of either personality or signature criteria and will then remain in the area and a second strike (and potentially more follow-up strikes) will be carried out against those who come to the aid of the victims of the first strike.28 As a result, researchers and journalists have learnt that locals will often wait a substantial period of time before going to the site a drone strike, delaying aid from reaching any injured survivors.29 These types of strikes make no effort to distinguish between combatants and non-combatants and seem to be designed specifically to ensure that those originally targeted will be killed, either in the follow up strike or through lack of medical care. These strikes have also never been officially acknowledged by the US so it is impossible to ascertain how and under what body of law these strikes are justified or what the decision making procedure is for authorising such a strike.
Second is ground—signature strikes and targeted killings are different strategies with different literature bases. The distinction is important because it allows the aff to regulate a less controversial area and bypass core negative ground