The issue of today is US drones.
The situation is, that via attack (and ‘surveillance’ too ultimately) drones, the US thinks it can wage undeclared wars in half a dozen countries with impunity. Today, the US employs cowards, who sit in Nevada, VA, or New Jersey, and kill people for money–then go off to little league.
CREECH AIR FORCE BASE, Nev. – From his apartment in Las Vegas, Sam Nelson drove to work through the desert along wind-whipped Highway 95 toward Indian Springs. Along the way, he tuned in to XM radio and tried to put aside the distractions of daily life – bills, rent, laundry – and get ready for work.
Nelson, an Air Force captain, was heading for his day shift on a new kind of job, one that could require him to kill another human being 7,500 miles away.
Seated in a padded chair inside a low, tan building, he controlled a heavily armed drone aircraft soaring over Afghanistan. When his shift ended, he drove 40 minutes back through the desert to the hustle and neon of Las Vegas.
Drone pilots and crews are the vanguards of a revolution in warfare, one the U.S. military and intelligence agencies have bet on heavily. The first Predator carrying weapons was rushed to Afghanistan just four days after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. Today, the Air Force is spending nearly $3 billion a year buying and operating drones, and is training pilots to fly more unmanned than manned aircraft. Demand is so strong even non-pilots such as civil engineers and military police are being trained.
More than 7,000 drones of all types are in use over Iraq and Afghanistan. The planes have played an integral part in the offensive now being carried out in Marjah, Afghanistan, by Marines, British and Afghan troops.
The Pentagon has adapted consumer-driven technology such as satellite television and digital video to give pilots, combat troops and commanders at headquarters a real-time look at the enemy on computer screens. For the first time in warfare, troops on the ground can see the enemy miles away on live video feeds.
Drone strikes in Pakistan are part of a separate CIA program that has killed more than two dozen senior al-Qaida and Taliban figures, including two leaders of the Pakistani Taliban in the last six months.
But the attacks also kill civilians, inflaming the sentiment the United States is fighting an undeclared, illegal war from the skies over that country. Some critics say the problems are so serious the entire program is counterproductive and should be shut down.