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Saturday, October 06, 2012

The drone war widens

Drones are already being flown into Israel.  How much longer before they are flown into the USA and Americans become targets?  I mean, of course, those Americans who aren't already being targeted by their own government.
The Israeli air force shot down a drone after it crossed into southern Israel on Saturday, the military said, but it remained unclear where the aircraft had come from.  The drone was first spotted above the Mediterranean Sea in the area of the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip to the west of Israel, said military spokeswoman Avital Leibovich.

It was kept under surveillance and followed by Israeli air force jets before it was shot down above a forest in an unpopulated area near the border with the occupied West Bank.  Leibovich said it was shot down at about 10 a.m. (0700 GMT), after it traveled east some 35 miles across Israel's southern Negev desert.
It should be illuminating indeed to hear federal officials angrily decrying the monstrosity and inhumanity of those flying lethal drones firing missiles at Americans inside the USA.

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45 Comments:

Anonymous Idle Spectator October 06, 2012 3:37 PM  

Skynet has become self-aware, at 3:31 PM Eastern Standard Time.

Blogger Roger Cook October 06, 2012 3:47 PM  

Vox,

What would you think of a drone policy where a list of targets was publicized, online, published in target-area newspapers, and dropped leaflets, with something like the following:

The President of the United States of America has determined that N. is an enemy of the United States of America for the following reasons:

Insert justification here, "He is a leader of al Qaeda," "He planned terrorist attacks on US forces"

Be it known that N. has until (date plus 30 days, repeated in relevant local calendars) to turn himself in to US forces or diplomats. After that day, he and those surrounding him will be subject to military attack at any time, either by drone or by any other US armed forces.

Of course, it might require the Congress to issue a Letter of Marque to do it right. What's your take on this?

Anonymous ENthePeasant October 06, 2012 3:49 PM  

The entire drone war was dreamed up by Joe Biden and he's still in charge of it as far as I know. That alone should tell you how this was all going to end. It's amusing to me that most Americans seem to think that drones, which are incredibly cheap and easy to manufacture, give the US an edge. Just the opposite is true, it gives the little guy and edge, a way to retaliate against the uselessness of F-22s that cost 1/3 of a billion dollars a copy, and drones can do it all for less than $5000. We've done nothing but give a bunch of incompetents third worlders the key to precision warfare on the cheap. Silly us. It's not so easy as one might expect to successfully target anything in the third world that does much overall damage to their nonexistent infrastructure. Of course just the opposite is true when dealing with a first world country where the huge, but relatively fragile, infrastructure can can cause the cascading domino affect, at little cost. And lets not forget that Iran took over our most sophisticated (and needlessly expensive) drones flying along the border in Herat province and (despite our claims of the drone automatically setting down) landed it at an Iranian airfield.

Anonymous Idle Spectator October 06, 2012 4:00 PM  

It's amusing to me that most Americans seem to think that drones, which are incredibly cheap and easy to manufacture, give the US an edge. Just the opposite is true, it gives the little guy and edge, a way to retaliate against the uselessness of F-22s that cost 1/3 of a billion dollars a copy, and drones can do it all for less than $5000.

This sounds familiar.

World War I: These new chemical weapons are totally going to keep us safe!

World War II: These new nuclear weapons are totally going to keep us safe!

World War...(5?): Oh man, this DNA splicer that inserts faulty DNA base pairs into eye cells after we spray it on the enemy troops, thereby making them blind is totally going to keep us safe!

// Goes back in time

No one will get around the bronze armor!
No one will get around the Macedonian Phalanx!
No one will get around the bow and arrow!
No one will get around the cavalry!

Anonymous Anonymous October 06, 2012 4:15 PM  

Talking with classmates in amilitary setting:

Former Artillery E6: Wow it must be nice to go 'bang bang' but why do that when you can go 'BOOM BOOM'

Special Forces E7: Ha ha nice, but I can go 'bang bang' with all the support I need and I can go anywhere, you guys are restricted where you can shoot so--

Former CAV E6: yeah, must be nice, but how do you get there? We can go 'boom boom' up close and personal and nobody can really hurt us. That's why y'all call us when the shit gets real. We can deal more combat damage in 15 minutes than you can in a week, ROE be damned.

Airforce E5: Bang bang and boom boom are nice, but why do that when you can go "Click click"?

All: Whoa! LOL

Problem: It's great until the OTHER guy can go 'click click' too

Blogger TontoBubbaGoldstein October 06, 2012 4:29 PM  

Problem: It's great until the OTHER guy can go 'click click' too.


It ain't as much fun when the rabbit's got the gun.

Anonymous duckman October 06, 2012 4:40 PM  

Idle Spectator
October 06, 2012 3:37 PM

Skynet has become self-aware, at 3:31 PM Eastern Standard Time.


That narrows down the location of Skynet a bit. The only place on the planet on EST right now is the part of Indiana that doesn't go onto daylight time.

Anonymous Kel October 06, 2012 4:56 PM  

The US government has been at war with its own citizens for a long time. The Army Times has a recent story about cold war testing in St. Louis:

ST. LOUIS — Doris Spates was a baby when her father died inexplicably in 1955. She has watched four siblings die of cancer, and she survived cervical cancer.

After learning that the Army conducted secret chemical testing in her impoverished St. Louis neighborhood at the height of the Cold War, she wonders if her own government is to blame.

In the mid-1950s, and again a decade later, the Army used motorized blowers atop a low-income housing high-rise, at schools and from the backs of station wagons to send a potentially dangerous compound into the already-hazy air in predominantly black areas of St. Louis.

Local officials were told at the time that the government was testing a smoke screen that could shield St. Louis from aerial observation in case the Russians attacked.

But in 1994, the government said the tests were part of a biological weapons program and St. Louis was chosen because it bore some resemblance to Russian cities that the U.S. might attack. The material being sprayed was zinc cadmium sulfide, a fine fluorescent powder.


Anonymous JartStar October 06, 2012 5:01 PM  

ENthePeasant got it right. Most any Middle East country will be able to field hundreds of these in a couple of years. Who needs to strap bombs on a crazy guy? Just stap them on drones until they get the missle tech going.

Within a decade I can imagine a freighter stopping off the US coast and flying half a dozen of these things into major American cities.

Anonymous Idle Spectator October 06, 2012 5:16 PM  

That narrows down the location of Skynet a bit. The only place on the planet on EST right now is the part of Indiana that doesn't go onto daylight time.

Indiana? I knew it was the Ku Klux Klan behind all of this!

Damn white people ruining everything.

Anonymous E. PERLINE October 06, 2012 5:31 PM  

Nuclear weapons are a great equalizer too. The little guy can be just devastating as the big guy. He just has to get his weapons in by stealth instead of by ICBMs.

Even a picayune country like Israel can level all of Europe. How about an international treaty to forbid all war? That would be something new under the sun.

Anonymous Idle Spectator October 06, 2012 5:45 PM  

How about an international treaty to forbid all war? That would be something new under the sun.

You mean like the League of Nations?

Anonymous Noah B. October 06, 2012 6:13 PM  

So if this were a Star Wars movie, we would be at the end of episode 2, right?

Anonymous Apeman October 06, 2012 6:18 PM  

I agree with ENthePeasant on how cheap and easy drone technology is. But by the same token, it is not very effective or dangerous. Sure, the United States has managed to use it to kill some goat herders, but Iran of all people managed to hack a super secret "stealth" drone that the US was flying over them.

Drones will be scary when they no longer have to phone home. Until then, they are just slow moving aircraft that always broadcast their location to anyone with half decent technical skills.

Anonymous ENthePeasant October 06, 2012 6:51 PM  

"Within a decade I can imagine a freighter stopping off the US coast and flying half a dozen of these things into major American cities."

I knew a brilliant gentleman who wrote that soon after retiring the early 90s. Some of the live feed in Funny thing was the bright lights at the CSGC in Leavenworth thought this was laughable. Most of them have since been commanders in Afghanistan and Iraq.

Anonymous JW October 06, 2012 6:51 PM  

"Within a decade I can imagine a freighter stopping off the US coast and flying half a dozen of these things into major American cities."

Don't have to stop or fly them in. Just upload GPS waypoints and the thing flys itself to where you want it to go.

Anonymous What goes around Comes around October 06, 2012 7:21 PM  


In 1980, Abraham Karem, an engineer who had emigrated from Israel, retreated into his three-car garage in Hacienda Heights outside Los Angeles and, to the bemusement of his tolerant wife, began to build an aircraft.

The work eventually spilled into the guest room, and when Karem finished more than a year later, he wheeled into his driveway an odd, cigar-shaped craft that was destined to change the way the United States wages war.

The Albatross, as it was called, was transported to the Dugway Proving Ground in Utah, where it demonstrated the ability to stay aloft safely for up to 56 hours — a very,very long time in what was then the crash-prone world of drones.

Three iterations and more than a decade of development later, Karem’s modest-looking drone became the Predator, the lethal, remotely piloted machine that can circle above the enemy for nearly a day before controllers thousands of miles away in the southwestern United States launch Hellfire missiles toward targets they are watching on video screens.

Anonymous Stilicho October 06, 2012 7:26 PM  

It ain't as much fun when the rabbit's got the gun.

Bring out the Holy Hand Grenade!

Blogger Markku October 06, 2012 8:01 PM  

Drones with biological weapons would be much more fun.

In the particular sense of "fun" used in Dwarf Fortress.

Blogger Markku October 06, 2012 8:06 PM  

Just imagine how easy it is going to be to assassinate with only the teeniest weeniest little UAV's carrying biological weapons, and make it look like some other enemy did it.

Blogger Markku October 06, 2012 8:07 PM  

And hot damn, has the USA handed China just the perfect scapegoat.

Anonymous Stilicho October 06, 2012 8:30 PM  

And hot damn, has the USA handed China just the perfect scapegoat.

You are rather exuberant about this for someone who lives next door to a Bear with a grudge which is probably just looking for an excuse...

Blogger Markku October 06, 2012 8:34 PM  

If we killed more of them in the process, I'd be willing to sacrifice our nation. My only worry is that our leaders won't feel the same.

If only we had nukes, so that we could nuke ourselves if it starts looking bad, and make sure that nobody gets the land.

Anonymous The OASF October 06, 2012 9:08 PM  

Don't get your panties in too much of a bunch, VD Land dweebs. As soon as some kid reprograms a drone to fly back to it's source and drop da' bomb... it will be game over for their usage in the USA.

The modern high-tech military has failed in every way imaginable. If they can't occupy a few City block in Baghdad without getting half of themselves killed and bankrupting the Fed, how will they occupy ghetto thug land America and high-IQ redneck America armed to the teeth with the best weapons that money can buy?

They only way they'll win is if Americans decide to tear each other apart instead of the government. And there is a very, very good chance that this is exactly what will happen.

Anonymous zen0 October 06, 2012 9:46 PM  

It is only a matter of time until the anti-drone drones are produced. They will be smaller, faster, and more maneuverable than the drones, and will swarm, just like smaller birds swarm against larger predators.

Surely I am not the only one that has this thought. It is the way of nature.

Anonymous DT October 06, 2012 10:23 PM  

Don't get your panties in too much of a bunch, VD Land dweebs. As soon as some kid reprograms a drone to fly back to it's source and drop da' bomb... it will be game over for their usage in the USA.

I'm really rather surprised that Iran beat Anonymous to the punch on this one.

Anonymous zen0 October 06, 2012 10:36 PM  

A kid will not reprogram the drone without its handlers noticing and re-re-programming. The kid will re-re-re and the handlers will re-re-re-re, and eventually you have to call out the primitive forces like F16 fighters to shoot it down.

C'mon, people, thimk!

Anonymous Matthew October 06, 2012 10:40 PM  

TontoBubbaGoldstein's referring to one of the stories in Struwwelpeter, an old German book of unsubtle propaganda fables.

http://www.gutenberg.org/files/12116/12116-h/12116-h.htm

I grew up reading Geraldine Richelson's modernized verse translation, From Bad to Worse

http://www.amazon.com/From-Bad-Worse-Silly-Tales/dp/B001M5PESK

Both the original and the modern version are heavily influenced by members of the group that scoobius likes to warn us about.

Anonymous zen0 October 06, 2012 10:58 PM  

Both the original and the modern version are heavily influenced by members of the group that scoobius likes to warn us about.

Children's authors?

Blogger LP 999/Eliza October 06, 2012 11:06 PM  

Follow-up stories will be interesting if anything was reversed engineered. I doubt they find anything interesting or remotely new about this technology.

Local colleges and courts are also called community centers and wellness checkpoints.

I don't know why others are so surprised, alerted by stateside droned sections. What is the big deal? Wasn't there a recent poll out with half of America supporting their own deaths, err, drones for the security and safety of Post America? See, Americans are fine with it! As the days darken, pple will cry out for more tyrannical security options like this one.

Anonymous The OASF October 06, 2012 11:22 PM  

"They only way they'll win is if Americans decide to tear each other apart instead of the government. And there is a very, very good chance that this is exactly what will happen."

Not trying to be narcissistic by commenting on my own comment... but Americans' love and affinity for the 2nd amendment is all that we collectively have left in common in this country. So much do Americans love their guns that not even fluoridation, fatty pig obesity, fag-marriage propaganda, Dateline NBC, and scription' drugs have yet to put a dent in it. So I pray to the good Lord that Americans will have enough sense left in them to turn their guns on the right opponents when all h-e-double-hockey-sticks breaks loose.

Anonymous Kickass October 07, 2012 12:14 AM  

Zeno you are way behind, they have bumble bee and dragon fly drones already. By the way, the running war robots freak me out more. Watched terminator too much I guess.

Anonymous III October 07, 2012 12:35 AM  

Drones will be scary when they no longer have to phone home. Until then, they are just slow moving aircraft that always broadcast their location to anyone with half decent technical skills.

And contrary to another commentator on a similar thread, they are working on that right now.

By the way, the running war robots freak me out more. Watched terminator too much I guess.

Cheetah:

http://youtu.be/chPanW0QWhA

AMEE

http://youtu.be/8ZKITq_2ORw

Anonymous BS October 07, 2012 3:09 AM  

Sigh. VD keeps missing the point on this one.

The Israeli air force shot down a drone

Hello! The Israelis shot it down. The group that sucks (Hamas) failed to operate drones in the airspace of the country that does not suck.

Same thing would happen in the USA. "They" (some foreign outfit) might get away with it once. But then we would shut that shit down.

Anonymous zen0 October 07, 2012 4:07 AM  

Zeno you are way behind, they have bumble bee and dragon fly drones already.

Are they capable of neutralizing Predator sized drones?

Anonymous Rahm October 07, 2012 4:22 AM  

The group that sucks (Hamas)

Hasn't it been publicly noted that Hamas is a creation of Mossad??

"Hamas, to my great regret, is Israel's creation," says Mr. Cohen, a Tunisian-born ... WallStreetJournal

Anonymous bw October 07, 2012 4:26 AM  

The fact that anyone believes that there is something in the ME that is aptly described as "a forest" is the most entertaining part of the article...

Anonymous dh October 07, 2012 8:33 AM  

At this point, 1 drone is an easy target for 2 jets.

But what about the RAID - redundant array of inexpensive drones? When NORAD as to track and intercept 10,000 bogeys at once, it will become something more of a problem.

Anonymous dh October 07, 2012 8:40 AM  

Does the 2nd amendment protect my right to have a drone? I think it would be fairly economical to put up a drone to survey my land and relay threat warnings to me via wireless link. Certainly less expensive than a doofy security guard making $8/hour.

Blogger The Anti-Gnostic October 07, 2012 8:47 AM  

The first time a hostile drone appears over CONUS, Americans will demand complete lockdown of the whole country. Sheet metal will become a controlled substance. Machinists will have to register with the government. The aerospace industry will be nationalized.

On a related note, I am of the opinion that somehow, someway, the worlds' governments need to dismantle their nuclear weapons. Democratic governments are going broke and are increasingly a destabilizing force. The nuclear powers need to exercise the foresight of the Afrikaaner government, which dismantled its nuclear arsenal before it handed over the keys to the savages. Of course, this won't happen.

Back on topic: whose drone was this? I'm thinking they probably shot down one of ours.

Blogger The Anti-Gnostic October 07, 2012 8:53 AM  

The initial theory seems to be, what else, Iran/Hezbollah. I tend to doubt this but maybe I'm wrong. Hezbollah isn't interested in invading Israel. Why would they care about reconaissance? And if they wanted to inflict cross-border damage they'd just lob over some rockets.

Anonymous Kickass October 07, 2012 9:41 AM  

Zeno, in the articles I read they are still being "tested" or "developed" and were designed more for survillance alone or to attack in swarms.Forgive me if I assume they have been in use for years since we are now hearing about it.

Blogger TontoBubbaGoldstein October 07, 2012 11:08 PM  

TontoBubbaGoldstein's referring to one of the stories in"Struwwelpeter", an old German book of unsubtle propaganda fables.

http://www.gutenberg.org/files/12116/12116-h/12116-h.htm



Alex, I'll take esoteric Teutonic Kinder-lit for $2000.


You give me waaaaay too much credit. I actually first heard the quote in a Texas holdem game. I had been kind of pushing folks around and after my last (fairly large) bet, one of the stronger players put me all in. Noticing the shock/disappointment on my face (a "tell", if you will. /s), he said, "It ain't no fun when the rabbit's got the gun, son."

Blogger TontoBubbaGoldstein October 07, 2012 11:16 PM  

"*How about an international treaty to forbid all war? That would be something new under the sun. *

You mean like the League of Nations?"


And it woulda worked, too. If not for that meddling US Congress, Hitler, Tojo, Stalin, Mao, Chamberland, Churchill, Roosevelt, the Krupps, Yamamoto, Goering...

Anonymous patrick kelly October 08, 2012 10:58 AM  

"Back on topic: whose drone was this? I'm thinking they probably shot down one of ours."
Bingo.

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