Obama's rare public acknowledgement of the US drone programme in Pakistan came on Monday during an hour-long online video chat with users of the Google+ social network.
Obama said the strikes were a “targeted focused effort at people who are on a list of active terrorists”.
The president said “a lot” of the strikes had targeted "al-Qaeda suspects who are up in very tough terrain” in the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA), along the border with Afghanistan, long believed to be a hub of activity for armed groups.
"For us to be able to get them in another way would involve probably a lot more intrusive military action than the ones we're already engaging in."
The controversial drone programme run by the CIA has often been met with protests in Pakistan amid concerns of civilian casualties. The Pakistani government publicly protests the operations, but is believed to support them.
A spokesman for Pakistan's foreign ministry reiterated the government's public protest in response to Obama's comments.
"Notwithstanding tactical advantages of drone strikes, we are of the firm view that these are unlawful, counterproductive and hence unacceptable," Abdul Basit said.
The New America Foundation, a think tank in Washington, says drone strikes in Pakistan have killed between 1,715 and 2,680 people in the past eight years.
According to the AFP news agency, the number of missiles that struck the tribal region went down from 101 in 2010 to 64 in 2011.
Iraq use limited
Obama, however, played down the use of drones in Iraq, saying the programme was very limited and focused mainly on protecting the US embassy in Baghdad.
"The truth is we're not engaging in a bunch of drone attacks inside Iraq. There's some surveillance to make sure that our embassy compound is protected."
Earlier, the New York Times newspaper had reported that the increasing use of drones in Iraq had outraged Iraqi officials.
The paper, citing a senior US official, said the US government was in talks with the Iraqi authorities, seeking authorisation for the drone operations. But it quoted three Iraqi officials saying they were unaware of such efforts.
"I think that there's this perception that we're just sending in a whole bunch of strikes willy nilly," Obama added. "It is important for everybody to understand that this is kept on a very tight leash."
Other questions to the panel, raised an interesting debate about the future of renewable energy here in the canada. The UK is known in international circles as a leader on climate change- but there was definitely a sense that greater ambition and consistency is needed as far as our domestic energy policy is concerned. Chris Huhne responded by sharing his hope that new low-carbon goods and services industries would push forward a “New Industrial Revolution”, allowing our economy to thrive moving away
from fossil fuels for good. Reducing energy consumption in homes , government support and targets for increasing Canada renewable energy production and developing Nuclear power and Carbon Capture and Storage technologies too.
However, this proved to be a contentious topic, given the recent announcement of drastic reductions on Feed-in-tariffs for solar photovoltaic technology in the Canada, a decision which many believe will cripple this important and rapidly growing industry. Investment in renewable energy is widely accepted as an essential step towards ending our unhealthy reliance on fossil fuels and grow the economy. It was unfortunate that the climate secretary’s comments did little to reassure the audience of the government’s commitment to support them with financial incentives.
Climate Change & Conflict : A threat to global peace & security?
Another interesting question was asked about the potential for conflicts over natural resources (water & fossil fuels) to intensify under runaway climate change, threatening international security now and in the future.
Gravitational Force and Electromagnetic Base
Until a few years ago scientists believed that all forces could be categorized into five classes:
- Gravitational force - the force of attraction between any two objects with mass.
- Electric force - a force of attraction or repulsion between charged objects.
- Magnetic force - a force of attraction or repulsion between ferro magnetic objects.
- Strong force - the force holding protons and neutrons together in the nucleus.
- Weak force - the force which causes radioactive decay.
In recent years it has been shown that the magnetic, strong, and weak forces are all variations of the electric force now called the electro-weak force. Many scientists believe that the gravitational force may also have an electromagnetic base, but no proof exists as of now.