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It started as a relatively routine cattle rustling investigation.
At last year’s Paris Air Show , some of the hottest aircraft were the autonomous unmanned helicopters—a few of them small enough to carry in one hand—that would allow military buyers to put a camera in the sky anywhere, anytime. Manufactured by major defense contractors, and ranging in design from a single-bladed camcopter to four-bladed multicopters, these drones were being sold as the future of warfare at prices in the tens to hundreds of thousands of dollars.
LOS ANGELES (CBS) — Surveillance aircraft used by the U.S. military overseas could soon be coming to the skies above Los Angeles County.
In November 2010, a police lieutenant from Parma, Ohio, asked Vanguard Defense Industries if the Texas-based drone manufacturer could mount a “grenade launcher and/or 12-gauge shotgun” on its ShadowHawk drone for U.S. law enforcement agencies. The answer was yes. Last month, police officers from 10 public safety departments around the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area gathered at an airfield in southern Maryland to view a demonstration of a camera-equipped aerial drone — first developed for military use — that flies at speeds up to 20 knots or hovers for as long as an hour.
A quadrocopter drone equipped with a camera stands on display at the Zeiss stand on the first day of the CeBIT 2012 technology trade fair on March 6, 2012 in Hanover, Germany. (credit: Sean Gallup/Getty Images) WASHINGTON (CBSDC) – With the use of domestic drones increasing, concern has not just come up over privacy issues, but also over the potential use of lethal force by the unmanned aircraft.
For all the attention given to U.S. law enforcement’s interest in adopting drones, the biggest users turn out to be not police departments, but universities. We learned this last week, when the Electronic Frontier Foundation forced the Federal Aviation Administration to reveal that it had approved 25 universities to fly drones in U.S. airspace.
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Last week President Obama signed a sweeping aviation bill that, among other things, will open the skies to “unmanned aircraft systems,” more commonly known as drones.
Officials often portray the global expansion of deadly drone strikes as an unequivocal success. But are we really accounting for all the consequences? Reuters
Once upon a time, American military might was symbolized by the heavy boots of the Marine Corps, stomping ashore to reestablish order in unruly parts of the world.
The global counterterrorism mission imposes substantial political costs to the U.S. Yet policymakers are rushing ahead anyway.
On December 30 of last year, ABC News reported on a 16-year-old Pakistani boy, Tariq Khan, who was killed with his 12-year-old cousin when a car in which he was riding was hit with a missile fired by a U.S. drone.
President Obama's senior anti-terrorism advisor, John Brennan, on Monday gave the administration's most detailed explanation of the policy and considerations behind using unmanned drones to target and kill terrorists abroad, saying the process was "legal," "ethical," and "conformed to the principle of necessity" and "proportionality," in a speech at a Washington, D.C. foreign policy think tank. "In the course of the war in Afghanistan and the fight against al-Qq'ida, I think the American people expects to use advanced technologies, for example, to prevent attacks on U.S. forces and to remove terrorists from the battlefield," said Brennan, Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism. "We do and it has saved the lives of our men and women in uniform."
Comment Since taking office, the Obama administration has greatly increased the number and accuracy of U.S. drone strikes against terrorist targets in Pakistan.