Here's my thoughts and a few pics and details about some military and police drones and the dynamic nature of drone technology.
It seems drone technology is being invested in and used increasingly as most people already know. Like most I first heard of drones solely as being
used as surveillance some years ago in Afghanistan and the mountainous tribal regions of Pakistan where tribal warlords and extremism were operating
quite freely with the occasional Hellfire being launched on a target now and again. At least reported publicly.
My how that has changed, I'm not sure anybody could've envisaged how fast this technology would be developed let alone start being deployed by local
police forces, so far as I'm aware mainly in the US at this point but the growing aggressive drone tactics used during Obama's tenure could be a sign
of things to come as he's personally approved more drone strikes than his predecessor George W. Bush.
We've also heard of the so called "kill lists" drawn up by the CIA overseen by John Brennan and the implications of US citizens being targeted after
the killing in Yemen of Anwar al-Awlaki and his 16 year old son.
Killing of muslim cleric and US citizen Anwar al-Awlaki
There are estimates as high as 98% of drone strike casualties being civilians
See this disturbing report.
50 civilians are killed for every 1 terrorist
Push to expand the "Kill List"
Now without going into the legal implications of extrajudicial assassination tactics so favored by the US and Israel, the fact remains the nobody is
immune from the prying eyes of these things if deemed a threat and I see their presence as somewhat invasive regardless of the fact that I'm not a
terrorist or engaged in illegal activities.
Secret bases in Saudi Arabia are now coming into the public spectrum, and the US is now increasing the scope of its drone assassination program to
Secret US drone bases
Let me be clear on one thing, I have no problem with terrorists or murderers or people of extreme public safety risk being targeted by these things.
What I do have a problem with is it seems that such threats are being used as a reason to introduce these things "invasively" into the public with
little to no oversight from judicial apparatuses.
The legal and moral ramifications and implications are very concerning and it seems, at least from the American President's perspective and that of US
State and Federal Law Enforcement agencies that drones are just another surveillance tool and privacy is of little concern. If you're not doing
anything wrong than don't worry about it kind of attitude.
Who's to judge if these agencies are conducting illegal activities, Senate Oversight Committee, The US Supreme Court?.
Never mind extrajudicial assassinations, whom in many cases kill innocents but how about illegal surveillance and what have you. It used to be that
wire tapping and physical surveillance needed approval from a judge who needed to assess the merit of the surveillance in question, immediate threat
to the public, evidence etc. I think drones should be no different but the "grey area" in drone surveillance and use for murder/assassination are
Some pics and links below...
This photo is a Black Hornet Nano drone manufactured by a Norweigan company and currently widely deployed by British troops abroad.
Black Hornet Nano Drone
More info on Black Hornet UAV
The Wasp Micro UAV. Wasp Micro UAV deployed by Texas SWAT
Swarms of cyber insect drones
How a Predator done works
The Predator's are becoming outdated but the firepower is unmatched
The SkySeer UAV. SkySeer UAV
RT did a good story on micro drones that you can see here. US Military Surveillance Drones
The rate at which drone technology advances never ceases to amaze me I just think the potential for abuse is ever so present, the day I see these
things being used in my homeland of Australia is the day I will be truly concerned but it seems right now the proving ground and major proponent of
Drone technology is the United States of America.
I also think that if Iran downed a US drone breaching their airspace, then Kudos to them. Vid and wiki link below
Iran-U.S RQ-170 Incident
Here's a link to a company specializing in Drone technology. Interesting read. MicroDrones
Oh, just because I'm a good news bad news kind of guy and do enjoy a giggle and I'm not all doom and gloom.
Here's a video from the Tube from FPS Russia of a Quadrotor Drone affectionately called "Charlene"
I've heard the the vid is fake but its entertaining to me nonetheless.
I guess the main thing I'd like to discuss with some of you guys is what kind of oversight can be implemented on those who use this technology?
Has Pandora's box proverbially been opened with this technology and has every Tom Dick and Harry (ie the public) with some blueprints and know how now
able to use this technology themselves? A concerning issue I believe...
edit on 14-2-2013 by yoursteppingonmytoes because:
edit on 14-2-2013 by yoursteppingonmytoes because: typo