A CIA drone strike in January killed two civilian kidnapped aid workers Warren Weinstein of Maryland and Giovanni Lo Porto of Italy near the Pak Afghan Border  — despite assurances from the CIA at the time of the operation that only al-Qaeda fighters were present. The tragic incident has led to serious in-house discussions at the White House and various  Committees of Senate and the Congress over the control and execution of the drone program. At present, The CIA is executing this program but now the White House wants the Pentagon, not the CIA anymore, to carry out this controversial and lethal operation.

The war against terror, apart from inflicting heavy losses to the life and property of innocent civilians, has also drastically changed the strategies and values pursued in the traditional modes of wars. The opponents in the traditional wars were distinctly identifiable while fighting battles in the clearly defined regions. The scenario stands horribly changed in the post 9/11 world. The enemy, or the terrorists, are fully intermingled within the general public and are hardly ever distinguishable thereby rendering the victims absolutely defenseless.

The drone technology on the other hand has also been an addition to such tactics attracting loud protests from the human rights organizations and civil societies of the targeted countries and others. The protests and abhorrence of the attacks all over the world is significant and justified because of the enormous damage inflicted on the innocents. A senior US administration official stated after the news of the accidental killing of the two hostages broke that, "The President has explained his belief that we must be more transparent about both the basis of our counterterrorism actions, including lethal operations, and the manner in which they are carried out." He further said, "Because of this, he has indicated that he will increasingly turn to our military to take the lead and provide information to the public about our efforts. We continue to work diligently toward this goal.”

The CIA is bound to keep the modus operandi of its covert operations secret while the Pentagon is likely to be more open regarding its military operations. Whatever the outcome, it is expected and required that these attacks now become extremely selective, accurate and may only be carried out in consultation and coordination with the responsible authorities of the countries where the terrorists are being targeted.