On June 19, 2004, the United States undertook its first known drone strike in Pakistan, beginning a covert war that would kill thousands of people. Since that first strike, which killed prominent Taliban leader Nek Muhammad in South Waziristan, the use of drones in Pakistan has remained shrouded in mystery with the government often denying that strikes took place or that civilians were killed. In the last year of his administration, President Obama began to release information on strikes outside of traditional war zones. This site provides a detailed and public look at the drone war in Pakistan by drawing upon credible reporting and government statements to track the drone war.
Under the Bush administration, the drone war remained relatively limited in Pakistan until 2008, when the administration began to escalate the number of strikes. The Obama administration continued to escalate strikes, peaking in 2010 and then beginning a slow decline until 2016 when the Obama administration conducted only three known strikes in Pakistan. On May 21, 2016, the United States conducted its last drone strike in Pakistan under Obama, killing then-Taliban leader Mullah Akhtar Mansour in Balochistan. No strikes were conducted in the last eight months of the administration.
On January 20, 2017 Donald Trump became president and inherited a drone war in Pakistan that had halted. On March 2, the Trump administration conducted its first strike in Pakistan ending a more than nine month pause in strikes.