Drones are the newest addition to the warfare, an art humans have been mastering for the past ten thousand years, and definitely the most innovative to the craft. For the first time in human history, we can have armed aircraft with the pilot being hundreds of miles away, controlling the drones from a safety. Gone are the days when pilots would have to risk their lives flying over hostile territory for strategic bombings. Not only that, but these drones are small and nearly silent, giving the US the element of surprise when it comes to war. However, this new technology has a strong price when it comes to our freedom and security. Drones have now become a very controversial subject and with recent legislation, a possible power that threatens our daily lives.
Drones themselves are nothing new. Nikola Tesla was one of the first to come up with the idea, describing militaries having fleets of unmanned aircraft. Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) first were developed by Nazi Germany with their V-1 and V-2 Program, which became the first cruise missiles. These weapons would become invaluable for the research of Rocketry in the 1950s and 60s. The first modern UAVs were developed by the Israelis after the Yom Kippur War, who wanted a unmanned aircraft to spy and use for electronic warfare. These same drones helped create chaos for Syrian and Lebanese anti air stations during the Lebanon War of 1982. Since that time, the US and much of Western Europe developed their own forms of Drones for spy use and ECM. The US became the first nation to utilize drones as actual warplanes after we developed the Predator Drone, which are armed with the AGM-114 Hellfire missiles back in 2004. This new development proved very useful in Iraq and Afghanistan, allowing troops to call in strikes on demand and requiring very little cost per use. However, drone use during the Bush Administration paled in comparison to how the Obama Administration has been using them.
I’m going to be honest; I really don’t have a problem with Obama droning in Pakistan and other Middle Eastern countries, even if he is killing innocent people and children. It’s one of the few things I’m proud of our President for doing (mind you, I AM very much anti-Obama, but he DID get this right for once…kinda). He is making the US seem to be a strong and proud superpower, willing to go through any lengths to protect our way of life, and preventing threats before they can harm anyone. Still I’ll admit that Obama has gone a tad overboard… with GUESSES saying Obama or at least his administration has performed over four hundred drone strikes, two hundred fifty in Pakistan alone. This compared to Bush’s seventy-eight CONFIRMED strikes in total, and Bush was a lot more careful with his strikes. Obama will strike down any terrorist that pops up on radar, whether the terrorist is grocery shopping, attending a funeral or giving away his daughter at a wedding, no matter the collateral damage. Its believed that each strike kills anywhere from 6-12 casualties on average. If you do the math, that is anywhere between 2400- 4800 people these strikes have killed in total at least as far as GUESSING goes. That is a very high death toll (to compare, 3500 US troops have been killed in Iraq) and a huge blow for the terrorists in the Middle East. I’m willing to make the argument that the “innocent” people there were just as much a part of Al Qaeda as the drone target was, even if they are a US born citizen. However, with the recent “rule change” with drone bombing that counters the Bill of Rights comes a very scary thought for the Future.
The new Drone Bill, as far as I’ve studied, basically says that anyone who belongs to a known terrorist and is Natural Born Citizen may be a target for a drone strike. Of course, the bill never really draws the line as to what the criteria is to be counted as a terrorist. While I have my doubts that Obama will take advantage of this loophole (I would think he would have used it to drone strike the cop killer Dorner in his cabin), I’m still very worried about future administrations, whether they be under President Clinton, Biden, Palin, Rubio, Paul, Christy, or Ronald McDonald (‘cause you know He’ll drone bomb Burger King and Wendy’s Headquarters Day 1). Who will they declare “terrorists”? Maybe they will finally take out the Al Qaeda cells active here in the US. Then maybe gang hideouts and “rebel militias”. Then what? The KKK and Neo-Nazis? That might take a chunk out of the American White History Month’s readers (Lol, I kid) Will the Westboro Baptist Church be on the list because they preach hate, even though it’s constitutionally protected? What about Occupy Wall Street? Will we start drone bombing illegal immigrants? Will we have drones patrol our Nation for crime? When will the line be crossed? Also, let’s not forget that we aren’t the only nation developing drone technology. China has already made prototype models for drone bombers, and Iran captured one our drones last year. Also, if Syria does conquer Israel, they might be able to steal their armed drones as well. Think about. We all feel safe in the US, but what about when a missile comes screaming at you?
America is slowly becoming a Police State and we are moving towards it at high speed, much faster than we are going towards socialism. We can’t just sit and watch as we lose our freedoms to “protect us” and watch our Government take more and more power. The American public needs to be aware of it. Check back next week for more on the approaching Police State.
Writer, Philosopher, Drone Enthusiast
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