Civilian casualties resulting from U.S., or U.S.-led coalition operations in Afghanistan, Iraq, Yemen, Somalia, and Syria have gone under-acknowledged and without remedy. Meanwhile, the military actively prepares for peer-to-peer conflict, and important lessons about preventing and responding to civilian harm in future theaters of war could be lost.
In spite of these worrying trends, CIVIC’s approach, which is based on a combination of technical expertise, public pressure, and discreet—but effective—direct engagement with military leaders and the U.S. Congress, continues to provide meaningful opportunities to shape U.S. policy and practice. Our U.S. program is currently focused on the following three objectives:
- Promote policies and practices that reduce civilian harm resulting from U.S. operations;
- Promote the integration of civilian harm mitigation in U.S. security cooperation activities, to include arms sales, partnered operations, and security assistance;
- Improve oversight, accountability, and transparency of U.S. military operations for the benefit of civilians who have been harmed in U.S. wars.
Through research, engagement, and active cooperation with our partners, CIVIC will build on a record of success ensuring that the United States government acknowledges and accounts for the harm it has caused in past wars and the wars it is fighting, while strengthening the protection of civilians in the wars it may fight in the future.