These are the headlines we are tracking for you in this episode of On the News Line:
US ground forces in action in Yemen
Reports emerged in the media that several civilians had been killed in an operation by US Navy Seals in Yemen. The target of the operation were reportedly militants from the al-Qaeda-linked terrorist group in Yemen – the AQAP. But things apparently went wrong from the beginning after the Seals shot a 70-year-old half-blind villager who had mistaken them as being visitors. Then things went out of control after four other civilians who started to argue with the stranger assailants were shot dead. It was only then that the real targets emerged. And in a fighting that pursued, seven AQAP – as the Pentagon has announced – were killed before the Seals were air-lifted. The Pentagon also says several troops had received minor injuries in the raid. Yet, questions are now being raised by media about what is seen as a massive increase in US military operations in Yemen.
Collateral damage at a cost?
The US led coalition in Syria, who are allegedly fighting against a terrorist organization have yet again struck hard in the heart of the civilian population. A US led airstrike in Raqqa has killed 16 civilians according to a UK based Syrian Observatory for Human rights. Women and children are amongst the dead in the village of al-Baruda. The warplanes conducting the strikes are said to have been supporting so called Syrian Democratic Forces, however, it appears that once again, this is a huge failure on behalf of the US, and follows the 230 civilians killed on Mosul in March. With Raqqa being an epicentre of the conflict, it is said that the civilians were sheltering from the fighting when they were hit. This hence raises the questions, that in a conflict which relies on precision and intelligence in order to ascertain the correct target in a mixing bowl of actors, how could this have happened?