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UCAV makes first ever combat kill*

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posted on Sep, 11 2007 @ 01:17 PM
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*Disclaimer - for the purposes of this thread title, smart weapons are not UCAVs




Dailytech



The official website for the Multi-National Force in Iraq is reporting that a Hunter MQ-5B/C unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) made its first kill on September 1. A scout weapons team (SWT) was performing surveillance when two enemy combatants were discovered.

The enemy combatants were suspected of planting improvised explosive device (IEDs) on a roadway, so air support was requested by the SWT. A Hunter UAV was sent to the location where it dropped a precision bomb on the two suspects. Both were killed by the blast.

"It’s very humbling to know that we have set an Army historical mark in having the first successful launch in combat from an Army weaponized UAV," said Capt. Raymond Fields of the Unmanned Aerial Surveillance Company.



The future has arrived.

Not that I think it is going to make a huge difference in Iraq or Afghanistan - infact, it will make no difference there whatsoever.


One thing I would worry about however, is that if more advanced UCAVs come along, one of the main obstacles holding back aggressive leaders/countries/whatever from deciding to take action against others has been removed [i.e. sticking their countrymen/women in danger].

For instance, if Jeb Bush** (or whatever) is president in 2020, I wouldn't like the thought of him saying "yeah, lets bomb the **SNIP** out of North Korea", just because he doesn't really like them and there is virtually no danger to servicemen/women. Meanwhile, thousands of innocent North Koreans, who have absolutely no say in the running of their country, will pay the price.



** Note: the country could easily be Russia, the UK, France or anyone else developing UCAVs.




Mod Edit: Profanity/Circumvention Of Censors – Please Review This Link.


[edit on 11-9-2007 by Crakeur]




posted on Sep, 11 2007 @ 01:20 PM
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Now if we can only put a self realization computer that can evolve on its own in it we will be so much better off....hehe



posted on Sep, 11 2007 @ 01:41 PM
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reply to post by kilcoo316
 


So, lemme get this straight. Some guys were digging at the side of the road in Iraq. Some guy in Houston, Texas, saw they were doing this on his little monitor which shows images from the unmanned drone, concluded they must be insurgents planting IED's, and proceeded to blow the Hell out of them.
I suppose they didn't bother to check up if it was a good call afterwards, or maybe somebody was doing some roadside repairs.
No, let's just say hooray for the hometeam and carve another notch in our holster.
No signature killing, just as good a development as 'private security contractors'. What a effin mess!



posted on Sep, 11 2007 @ 02:07 PM
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To date the MQ-1 Predator has several confirmed kills, including several strikes in Pakistan against Al Qaeda suspects, at least two strikes in Afghanistan against both Al Qaeda personel and hardened positions, an Al Qaeda leader in Yemen in 2002, and several in Iraq in the past 3 years.

So why is this news exactly?



posted on Sep, 11 2007 @ 02:39 PM
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Originally posted by linebottom
reply to post by kilcoo316
 


So, lemme get this straight. Some guys were digging at the side of the road in Iraq. Some guy in Houston, Texas, saw they were doing this on his little monitor which shows images from the unmanned drone, concluded they must be insurgents planting IED's, and proceeded to blow the Hell out of them.
I suppose they didn't bother to check up if it was a good call afterwards, or maybe somebody was doing some roadside repairs.
No, let's just say hooray for the hometeam and carve another notch in our holster.
No signature killing, just as good a development as 'private security contractors'. What a effin mess!


There are certain activities in Iraq that will get you shot at. Digging by roads is one of them, as are not stopping at checkpoints, getting too close to convoys, carrying RPGs, etc... Iraqis are well aware of of these rules of engagement. If they still decide to continue on with them, then they can either be considered to have hostile intent, or they're morons.



posted on Sep, 11 2007 @ 07:37 PM
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Originally posted by linebottom
reply to post by kilcoo316
 


I suppose they didn't bother to check up if it was a good call afterwards, or maybe somebody was doing some roadside repairs.


You're right - they probably didn't bother after the secondary explosions went off...



posted on Sep, 11 2007 @ 11:00 PM
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reply to post by RichardPrice
 


Reading the article, it may be the first kill for the MQ-5, or indeed the first kill for the unit concerned, perhaps even the first kill by a UCAV launched in response to information obtained by another UCAV.

Of course, it raises the question relevant to the use of all UCAVs, which is what defines an enemy combatant - and that information was not released. In this kind of engagement, the possibility of error is no different to a manned aircraft attacking a target of opportunity. Ultimate success or failure in the war, in part, depends upon maintaining a tight definition of who is or isn't a threat and minimizing errors.

Failure is assured, if by mistakenly killing non-combatants, you create more enemies than you eliminate. Unfortunately, the prevalent use of the term 'collateral damage' (not relevant in this case), when referring to civilian casualties, tends to minimize the importance that such casualties have on the attitudes of the people you are attempting to help and ultimately the outcome of the conflict. The very real possibility of 'winning the battle and losing the war'.

Some of the comments made above reinforce the public perception that UCAVs are autonomous machines that kill indiscriminately without human decision and evaluation. Therefore the use of UCAVs, while minimizing blue force casualties, may not be appropriate if it generates resentment on the part of those you intend to support. Little wonder then that the people of Iraq might feel that, rather than having been liberated from an oppressive regime, they have fallen under an even more oppressive regime, who's 'robots' will kill them for no real reason other than that the machine decides to.

The Winged Wombat


[edit on 11/9/07 by The Winged Wombat]



posted on Sep, 12 2007 @ 04:17 AM
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Originally posted by RichardPrice
To date the MQ-1 Predator has several confirmed kills, including several strikes in Pakistan against Al Qaeda suspects, at least two strikes in Afghanistan against both Al Qaeda personel and hardened positions, an Al Qaeda leader in Yemen in 2002, and several in Iraq in the past 3 years.

So why is this news exactly?



Uhhhm... is the MQ-1 airforce?

Maybe this is the army trying to get some PR for their own efforts?



*didn't know about the predator kills - I guess I'm going to have to stick another disclaimer on that thread title



posted on Sep, 12 2007 @ 04:18 AM
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Originally posted by BlueRaja
There are certain activities in Iraq that will get you shot at. Digging by roads is one of them, as are not stopping at checkpoints, getting too close to convoys, carrying RPGs, etc... Iraqis are well aware of of these rules of engagement. If they still decide to continue on with them, then they can either be considered to have hostile intent, or they're morons.


What if they were digging to get at a water pipe beside the road to get fresh water to houses?


Things are not always as they seem.



posted on Sep, 12 2007 @ 04:27 AM
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Originally posted by linebottom

So, lemme get this straight. Some guys were digging at the side of the road in Iraq. Some guy in Houston, Texas, saw they were doing this on his little monitor which shows images from the unmanned drone, concluded they must be insurgents planting IED's, and proceeded to blow the Hell out of them.


The report states that the two men were discovered by a scout weapons team. I imagine the binoculars these teams carry would certainly give some idea of what they were really up to, and would hardly compare to a little monitor.

[edit on 12/9/07 by NuclearPaul]



posted on Sep, 12 2007 @ 04:33 AM
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cool were getting close to terminators by the day^^
but dont worry judjement day wont happen probably^^



posted on Sep, 12 2007 @ 04:51 AM
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Reading further into this, it all seems like overkill to me. Am I to assume that a SWT is unable to deal with two 'enemy combatants' digging a hole without resorting to an air strike? Wow, what's the appropriate weapon to use against a platoon of 'enemy combatants' - a nuclear warhead ?

Interesting......... and pretty poor use of resources, if you ask me - two guys (presumably armed with shovels) vs how many millions of dollars to develop and field the MQ-5 - under the circumstances, I don't think I'd be bragging too much about it.

The Winged Wombat

[edit on 12/9/07 by The Winged Wombat]



posted on Sep, 12 2007 @ 07:29 AM
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Originally posted by The Winged Wombat
Reading further into this, it all seems like overkill to me. Am I to assume that a SWT is unable to deal with two 'enemy combatants' digging a hole without resorting to an air strike?...

Interesting......... and pretty poor use of resources, if you ask me - two guys (presumably armed with shovels) vs how many millions of dollars to develop and field the MQ-5.
I think it's fair to say that this was seen as an opportunity to perform a live test of the system. A nice simple scenario involving a couple of lame ducks who are easy meat, very much like those ballistic missile shield tests where the scenario was ridiculously easy. Very much a "target of opportunity" in every bad taste sense of the word I say.

LEE.



posted on Sep, 12 2007 @ 07:34 AM
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reply to post by Xtrozero
 


That's a scary thought. What if these self-aware machines suddenly thought while on it's way to a target, "why is this my mission?"



posted on Sep, 12 2007 @ 10:04 AM
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Originally posted by linebottom
So, lemme get this straight. Some guys were digging at the side of the road in Iraq. Some guy in Houston, Texas, saw they were doing this on his little monitor which shows images from the unmanned drone, concluded they must be insurgents planting IED's, and proceeded to blow the Hell out of them.
I suppose they didn't bother to check up if it was a good call afterwards, or maybe somebody was doing some roadside repairs.
No, let's just say hooray for the hometeam and carve another notch in our holster.
No signature killing, just as good a development as 'private security contractors'. What a effin mess!


Are we talking about digging or repairing?






Not much to look at afterwards.



posted on Sep, 12 2007 @ 10:22 AM
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The article does not state the exact actions of the people who were killed and does not display graphic evidence of such. It is extremely unfair for any one on this thread to lay claim that they were innocent and that the SWT does not know what they are doing.

Give a little bit more credit to the people who are currently fighting because you're not there. Unless you actually saw what happened and can confirm the actual events that took place, I think we should give our boys and girls over there the benefit of a pat on the back for a job well done.

Why put yourself in harm's way when you can just put a machine?

Keep in mind that these machines are by no means "self-aware" and the "Terminator" scenario is thus rendered implausible.

Shattered OUT...



posted on Sep, 12 2007 @ 11:22 AM
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Sure Shattered,

I think the bozeian hit it on the head. An opportunity to test the system at unit level in the field without complications.

But having done that, I'd reckon an air strike to take out two people planting a bomb is just a little over the top, don't you think. And I'm not sure one should be openly boasting about it. While it proves the precision of the weapon system in service conditions (albeit somewhat controlled conditions with the SWT marking the target, no doubt), it will be interpreted elsewhere as.... look, our mega million dollar system can take out two unsuspecting people - wow!

Should such 'unbalanced' responses continue I could see the same criticism leveled at US forces as is leveled at Israeli retaliation. That is.... 'replying to stone throwing with air strikes'. I'm not saying that this is true, but it IS a criticism leveled at the Israelis and IS a belief held by many people throughout the world.

And that sort of situation will only make the war harder (if not impossible) to win, as every time your response is unbalanced you create more enemies than you eliminate.

The Winged Wombat



posted on Sep, 12 2007 @ 11:53 AM
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I'm going to go with what Bozeian said. The SWT most likely request air strike to finally put the MQ-9 to combat testing. I'm positive that if they had a choice between two combat-tested already fielded tactics to eliminate two targets, they would go with the cheaper and more efficient one.

The MQ-9 had to be fielded on something or else it's just tax-payer's money going to waste sitting in a hanger in some desert Army base.

Shattered OUT...



posted on Sep, 12 2007 @ 12:21 PM
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reply to post by The Winged Wombat
 


You are missing the point with regards to the armed drones. The whole idea is the ability to rapidly deal with a situation, and at the same time minimize risks to your forces. If you have eyes on the objective, see bad guys in the act, and you have a platform there to engage, you can go ahead and deal with them immediately. If there isn't a ground force nearby, they might not have time to get there before their targets left. Additionally, you are putting them at risk of getting hit enroute, at the objective, or on the way back to base. With regards to overwhelming force, you never want to fight an enemy on even terms if you can avoid it.
Iraqis know that digging near roads is a no no, and that they will be engaged. If they're merely a road crew, they'll coordinate with coalition/Iraqi forces prior to digging to deconflict any measures that might be taken against them mistakenly.



posted on Sep, 12 2007 @ 12:33 PM
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reply to post by ShatteredSkies
 


They are not MY boys and girls. Maybe you should keep in mind that there are other nationalities besides american reacting to these forums. And I am not about to give anyone a pat on the back who pushes the kill-button from some base thousands of miles away.
There are, however, those among your servicemen (and women), who joined ranks because they saw no other way to improve their economic and social status at the time, and as a consequence, found themselves on a battlefield on the other side of the world, facing an impossible situation. They have my sympathy. I hope they can retain some of their humanity while having to deal with constant indoctrination and the efforts to dehumanize a nation's population. I hope they can go and live some sort of normal life after this is over. To those in charge, go to Hell! You are doing the wrong thing, and you know it.
Not only do you have to fear for your life if you dig near a road. You have to fear for your life if a IED exploded near your house and a soldier got killed in the proces. You have to fear for the chastity of your teenage daughter if american soldiers are around (don't you dare tell me it didn't happen). Face it, the U.S.A. has not learned a damn thing since Vietnam. Oh, my mistake, of course they have, they have learned not to keep track of the bodycount.

You know what?! You mods out there can delete my account right now. I've had with all americans for now. I'll start communicating with you folks again once I get a sense that you are able to see the rest of the world as fellow human beings.

(Yes I am generalising! I'll stop doing it if you are.)



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