Military veterans are speaking out against U.S. drone strikes overseas with a graphic TV advertising campaign. The ads, spearheaded by activist website KnowDrones.com, ask Air Force pilots to “please refuse to fly.”
The ads will air throughout April in the Sacramento, California, region, near drone-operating Beale Air Force Base. One of the ads, which features images of wounded and dead children, will appear on television only after 10 p.m. An edited version of it will run 5 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily.
The ads are the first commercials opposing U.S. drone operations ever shown on U.S. television, according to sponsors that include the Veterans Democratic Club of Sacramento County and the Sacramento chapter of Veterans for Peace.
“We felt that the president and the Congress had been totally unwilling not only to stop the killing, but to provide any information to the public on the scope of these attacks since they began,” Nick Mottern, a KnowDrones.com organizer, told the Guardian this month.
The commercials are estimated to cost around $6,000, according to Cres Vellucci, president of the Veterans Democratic Club of Sacramento County, The Sacramento Bee reported Thursday. The spots are running on major cable channels, including AMC, CNN, Comedy Central, ESPN, Fox News, HGTV and a Comcast Bay Area sports channel.
“If you’re a fan of ‘Mad Men,’ Giants games or Fox News, there’s a good chance you’ll see it,” Vellucci told the Sacramento Bee.
Vellucci said the ads are scheduled to air on Comcast through April near Beale Air Force Base. The ads will also appear in these California locations: in Yuba City, Marysville, Wheatland, Linda, Live Oak, Colusa and Olivehurst.