Yet Another Wonder Weapon


You’d think with all the fancy armaments we’ve dispatched to Afghanistan over the last decade that we would have won by now. The latest to burst on the scene is the Switchblade — don’t you just love the names they come up with? — drone. It’s made by AeroVironment Inc. of …

Report Examines “Worst Case” Scenario for the U.S. Military

The debt ceiling deal passed this summer contains a sequestration “trigger.” If the Super Committee fails to agree on a plan to meet its deficit reduction targets–or if Congress fails to approve the plan, the legislation stipulates that huge amounts of discretionary spending funds will be automatically sequestered–i.e., taken off …

Pilots’ Days Are Numbered


On a day when a U.S. drone apparently sent Anwar al-Awlaki to his eternal reward, check out this Northrop Grumman video of the Navy’s X-47B UCAS — Unmanned Combat Air System. Sometime in the next year or two, these things are slated to start test flights off …

Poor Man’s Predator


It used to be the only bad thing associated with model airplanes was sniffing glue. But as Wednesday’s arrest of a Massachusetts man on charges that he wanted to fly model airplanes crammed with explosives into the Capitol and Pentagon makes clear, they also can be used as weapons. Over at CNN’s Security Clearance blog, Paul …

When the Machine World Attacks

Interesting WAPO piece today on advances in drone technology, the basic line being, we’re not all that far from drones doing their killing on their own. Story leads with a description of a successful test wherein drones communicate with each other and zero in on a colored object. You can easily do the extrapolation to …

“How Did the U.S. Military Retool Itself Post-9/11?”

In the decade after 9/11, just how much did the U.S. military have to recalibrate to fight the wars it found itself launching in Afghanistan and, 18 months later, in Iraq? This week, on Command Post, we discuss the retooling of the American armed forces with Eric Schmitt of the New York Times — co-author of Counterstrike: The Untold

Taking Stock: The U.S. Military a Decade After 9/11

The 10th anniversary of 9/11 closes in on us this week. Try as you might, you will not be able to avoid it. Amid the pathos and bathos, it’s time to take a knee and conduct a map check.

Just to cut to the chase: you can’t argue with success, and on 9/12 most Americans were petrified a second wave of attacks was likely. It hasn’t …

The “Right Stuff” for a Drone Pilot

So wondering if you have what it takes to pilot one of those MQ-1 Predator or MQ-9 Reaper unmanned drones for the U.S. Air Force? Huh? Well, drones have pilots, just like more traditional aircraft. The only difference is the drone operator’s controls tend to be in some trailer – safely on the ground – far away from the drone …

“Look Ma — No Hands!”

Hate to feature two aircraft-carriers photos in the same day — it might go to the Navy’s head — but this second one warrants it. On July 2, an airplane landed on a flattop with no human involvement (except a pilot aboard for safety):

The test, conducted on USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN-69), means the Navy is one step closer to

Droning On To a New Way of War

So the U.S. government — if not the military, then the CIA — is now using drones to kill suspected terrorists in at least six different countries — Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Pakistan, Somalia and Yemen. Congress — the entity charged with declaring war, according to the Constitution — has basically green-lighted only the attacks …

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