The spate of allegations of civilian deaths as a result of US operations in Iraq, Syria, and Yemen over the last few weeks has garnered significant interest from humanitarian groups around the world, as well as, finally, the United States Congress. Some media reports suggest that the March 17 bombing in Mosul, if true, is the single biggest civilian casualty event resulting from a U.S. airstrike since the 2003 invasion of Iraq, while multiple other reports question whether possible changes in the rules of engagement led to this overall increase in civilian deaths. The US military, however, says that a) nothing has changed in the rules of engagement; b) all allegations of civilian harm are taken seriously; and c) in war—especially when fought in populated areas—some civilians unfortunately will die.

Source: The Importance of Protecting Civilians—Through Law, Strategy, and Tactics

Image courtesy of Maranie Rae Staab