President Trump has vastly upped the ante in drone attacks to score decisive wins in the war on terror, a policy that puts pressure on Democratic rival Joseph R. Biden to buck criticism of his role in the Obama administration’s remote-control killings.
Far-left Democrats and human rights groups have opposed the use of drones to target extremists with ties to al Qaeda, the Islamic State and other terrorist organizations. They complain the lethal strikes result in civilian casualties and eschew due process.
The opposition has left Mr. Biden boxed in. He must assuage his liberal base by condemning Mr. Trump’s lethal strikes without calling attention to the Obama-era escalation of drone killings to fight Islamic terrorists.
Ian Williams, a fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, said he was surprised Mr. Biden’s 2020 rivals for the Democratic Party’s presidential nomination didn’t make a bigger issue of the Obama administration’s record on drone attacks.
“Those who are the