May 2013

Fatima Abdullah Mokbel Salem Louqye by Siobhan Gwozdz

The idea for a Drones Quilt came from some women in the UK who started the project as a way to memorialize the victims of U.S. combat drones.  We believed that there were lots of anti-drone activists in the U.S. who would like to make our own version of a Drones Quilt, and so the idea traveled across the Atlantic.  The idea is to collectively create a piece of artwork which connects the names of activists with those killed.  The names humanize the victims and point out the connectivity between human beings.  Plans for the American version of the quilt include creating educational materials, photographs and information which together with the quilts will create an exhibit which will travel the country, informing and educating the American public.  Sadly, according to the Bureau of Investigative Journalism, only about 20% of the drone victims have been identified, so there are many, many victims whose names are not known.  Additionally, Pashtun culture prohibits the release of an adult woman’s name, as they consider that an invasion of her privacy, so there are hundreds of women’s names which may never be known to us.  We are remembering these unnamed victims with quilt blocks that say “Anonymous,” “Unnamed Woman,” “Unnamed Man,” or “Unnamed Child.”  The important thing to remember is that each victim was a human being, with hopes, dreams, plans, friends and family.  We hope that the Drones Quilt Project will help us remember that we are all the same–we are not worth more, and they are not worth less.  We all have value.

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