#AceNewsServices – Featured Post – Nov.23 – This post is about a subject that myself and my reporter in South East Asia know about all too well. The increase and proliferation of drones and their affect on the people of the countries being bombed.
Drones: choosing between droning on and understanding
By Ejaz Haider
One of the basic requirements of fighting wars and the many battles that make up a war is to gain asymmetric advantage over the enemy.
Put in English, if you find yourself in a fair fight, you did not plan well.
Winning is about unfair advantage at four levels – political, strategic, theatre, and tactical – of any conflict.
When David faced Goliath, a straight contest would have got David killed. His asymmetric advantage lay in deception, speed and surprise.
That’s where the slingshot came in, not only neutralising Goliath’s advantage but felling him. The history of warfare is the story of unfair advantage.
Today’s wars and its battlefields are complex and non-linear, but the basic principles remain unchanged. Non-state actors have introduced the suicide bomber, raising the cost for the state by upending the basic principle of security, i.e., self-preservation.
States, on their part, have learned that superior force in this contest with elusive enemies is not much use.
Corollary: develop and utilise technologies that are accurate, discriminatory and, more crucially, can be embedded in a C4I2 (command, control, communications, computing, intelligence and information) process for greater precision.
The objective: pre-emptive strikes at the enemy and to strike deftly.
This is where drones, remotely-piloted vehicles, come in. They have become the most controversial platform over the last decade, flying and striking stealthily and, for the most part, cleanly and precisely.
The debate has two extreme ends: the absolutists who oppose their use unconditionally and the proponents who advocate their enhanced use equally unconditionally. The facts of drones use, as always, lie somewhere between these extremes.
The issue – or as some would like to term it, problem – has to be debated at three levels: technology, operations and law. Let’s consider them in that order.
First, drones are not just used to kill people. The technology has multiple uses, most of them in fact benign. While Amazon’s Octocopter package delivery project may still be in the future, drones are already being used in agriculture, search and rescue, 3-D mapping, geological surveys et cetera.
By Ejaz Haider.
#AceNewsServices – WASHINGTON – Nov.17 – The Pentagon’s main research arm wants to find out what a flying “aircraft carrier” carrying a fleet of small aerial drones might look like and how much it would cost the military.
The Defence Advanced Research Projects Agency announced Sunday it would open a competition for proposals to build a large aircraft — similar to a C-130 — that could carry and distribute aerial drones across a large area. DARPA officials said they wanted to see proposals for a system that could both launch the drones, but also recover them mid-flight.
“We want to find ways to make smaller aircraft more effective, and one promising idea is enabling existing large aircraft, with minimal modification, to become ‘aircraft carriers in the sky’,” said Dan Patt, DARPA program manager.
DARPA wants the proposals to allow for a flight demonstration of the aircraft and the drones within four years. Officials expect to use the proposals to build an official DARPA program for the system.
Source: RT – DARPA – Technology Media News
#AceNewsServices – CHINA – Nov.15 – China has developed and successfully tested a highly accurate laser defence system against light drones CCTV America reported.
The home-made machine boasts a two-kilometre range and can down “various small aircraft” within five seconds of locating its target.
Boasting high speed, great precision and low noise, the system is aimed at destroying unmanned, small-scale drones flying under an altitude of 500 meters and at speeds below 50 meters per second, the official Xinhua news agency reported, citing a statement by one of the developers, the China Academy of Engineering Physics (CAEP).
A recent test saw the machine successfully bring down over 30 drones – a 100-percent success rate, according to the statement. The laser system is expected to play a key role in ensuring security during major events in urban areas.
“Intercepting such drones is usually the work of snipers and helicopters, but their success rate is not as high and mistakes with accuracy can result in unwanted damage,” explained Yi Jinsong, a manager with China Jiuyuan Hi-Tech Equipment Corp.
Yi told Xinhua that small-scale, unmanned drones are relatively cheap and easy to use, which makes them a lucrative choice for terrorists. Concerns have also been raised recently over drones involved in unlicensed mapping activities, and the negative effect this could have on both military and civil aerial activities.
The academy is currently working on developing similar laser security systems with greater power and range, the Chinese news agency reported.
The drone industry has been booming in recent years, with the challenge to build small, hard-to-track drones that are difficult shoot down.
Contribution of RT – Xinhua News Agency – CAEP – CCTV America
Ace News Room – Featured Writers Post – Nov 07 – This is a cause l feel really strongly about and these manned and unmanned drone attacks should be stopped.
So when l was offered this post, well here it is and it made me cry inside.
#AceNewsServices – LONDON – November 06 – The construction of the most advanced drone testing lab in the United Kingdom will begin at the Imperial College London in 2016, The Guardian reported Thursday.
“It’s an excellent opportunity to create a state-of-the-art facility, not only in the UK but worldwide,” the director of Imperial College’s aerial robotics lab Dr. Mirko Kovac was quoted as saying by the newspaper.
“The time is right to invest in drones because devices like smartphones are so widespread, technology like the GPS chip has become small and cheap and can be used for drones, which has fueled this type of research,” he added.
According to Kovac, the facility will be “unique and will allow us to research and test combustion for flying robots so that we can develop new engines and new principles for robotics using hazardous chemicals”.
#AceWorldNews – YEMEN – November 04 – The US staged several overnight drone attacks on suspected militants near Rada, a town in south Yemen which fell under al-Qaeda control in 2012, AFP reports.
According to tribal sources and eyewitnesses, the militants were preparing to withdraw from the town ahead of approaching Houthi rebels, a powerful group of Shiites with whom they have been fighting for control over the Al-Bayda province for almost two weeks, during the attack.
Washington has acknowledged using drones in Yemen, but does not typically confirm specific attacks.
#AceNewsServices PAKISTAN September 27 Discussions are questioning whether CIA drone attacks in Pakistan are responsible for unlawful killings, some of which may amount to war crimes.
For years now Pakistanis have expressed their outrage at the US drone strikes in Pakistan, which they claim cause indiscriminate deaths and injuries.
The Pakistan government also continues to express criticism, saying it injects mass hatred in the population, is a violation of sovereignty and fuels terrorism.
The unmanned aircraft attack from the sky. The US government adopted this method to kill and target terror suspects.
They say the use of drones is vital to defend itself against terrorist threats as drone warfare is successful in the US pursuit of al- Qaeda and the Taliban.
This legal expert explains why they are problematic. Although the Pakistan government supports the concerns expressed by the international community on America’s drone campaign, many insiders believe they play a dubious game.
They say that while Islamabad publicly condemns drone strikes, it is secretly complicit with the US government.