Published 9 January 20139 January 2013 · Politics American children are more important than other children Stephen Wright Here are some photos of Barack Obama with American children. He has good rapport with children doesn’t he? Here’s a photo of Obama receiving the news about the massacre of 20 children at Sandy Hook Elementary School. Here he is with some of the children from Newtown who weren’t murdered at Sandy Hook Elementary School. Here’s the approximate number of children killed by CIA drones to date (January 2013) in Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia. 211 Here’s a story about a drone attack from a child who survived when one of Obama’s Hellfires dropped in on him in Pakistan. The text is taken from the Stanford-NYU website, Living Under Drones. Sadaullah Wazir, teenager, former student from the village of Machi Khel in Mir Ali, North Waziristan, was severely injured in a September 2009 drone strike on his grandfather’s home. Sadaullah has filed a complaint before the UN Human Rights Council. ‘Before the drone strikes started, my life was very good. I used to go to school and I used to be quite busy with that, but after the drone strikes, I stopped going to school now. I was happy because I thought I would become a doctor.’ Sadaullah recalled, ‘Two missiles [were] fired at our hujra and three people died. My cousin and I were injured. We didn’t hear the missile at all and then it was there.’ He further explained, ‘[The last thing I remembered was that] we had just broken our fast where we had eaten and just prayed. . . .We were having tea and just eating a bit and then there were missiles. . . . When I gained consciousness, there was a bandage on my eye. I didn’t know what had happened to my eye and I could only see from one.’ Sadaullah lost both of his legs and one of his eyes in the attack. He informed us, ‘Before [the strike], my life was normal and very good because I could go anywhere and do anything. But now I am not able to do that because I have to stay inside. . . . Sometimes I have really bad headaches. . . . [and] if I walk too much [on my prosthetic legs], my legs hurt a lot. [Drones have] drastically affected life [in our area].’ Perhaps Barack Obama could go to Waziristan and speak to Sadaullah Wazir and explain to him why he had to blow his legs off with a Hellfire missile. Or maybe Sadaullah could meet Obama in the Oval Office. It’s not as if he isn’t used to having children there. They could have their picture taken together. Stephen Wright Stephen Wright’s essays have won the Eureka St Prize, the Nature Conservancy Prize, the Overland NUW Fair Australia Prize and the Scarlett Award, and been shortlisted for several others. In 2017, he won the Viva La Novella Prize. His winning novel, A Second Life, was published by Seizure, and also won the Woollahra Digital Literary Prize for Fiction. More by Stephen Wright Overland is a not-for-profit magazine with a proud history of supporting writers, and publishing ideas and voices often excluded from other places. If you like this piece, or support Overland’s work in general, please subscribe or donate. Related articles & Essays First published in Overland Issue 228 1 June 20231 June 2023 · Politics Turning peaceful protesters into criminals—again Evan Smith So the Summary Offences (Obstruction of Public Places) Bill 2023 has been passed by South Australia’s Legislative Assembly and will become law. Fifteen hours of debate in the upper house, led by the Greens and SA Best, could not overturn the bill that was reportedly rushed through the lower house in just twenty-two minutes a fortnight ago. First published in Overland Issue 228 16 May 202323 May 2023 · Politics The gender pay gap’s grim legacy: homelessness among older women in Australia Samantha Trayhurn My mum took her first job in 1980, when she was fourteen. In my childhood, she worked as a medical receptionist. For every hour she worked, she was almost certainly paid less than a man in a job of ‘comparable value’. For every curtailed pay check, there was a lower superannuation benefit, a lower amount left for savings at the end of each week and, inevitably, a lower amount to put towards a house deposit.