Drones explores the history behind unmanned aircraft, it explains how they work and features the most well-known military and civilian drones in action today. From the armed and deadly MQ-9 Reaper, the long endurance RQ-4 Global Hawk to the small hand-launched Cropcam and the Remus autonomous underwater vehicle.
Illustrated with 200 colour photographs and artworks, Drones is an exciting, accessibly written narrative about the latest in military and civilian aviation technology.
Having traveled extensively in the Pashtun tribal areas while working for the U.S. military and the CIA, Williams explores in detail of the new technology of airborne assassinations. From miniature Scorpion missiles designed to kill terrorists while avoiding civilian "collateral damage" to prathrais, the cigarette lighter-size homing beacons spies plant on their unsuspecting targets to direct drone missiles to them, the author describes the drone arsenal in full.
Evaluating the ethics of targeted killings and drone technology, Williams covers more than a hundred drone strikes, analyzing the number of slain civilians versus the number of terrorists killed to address the claims of antidrone activists. In examining the future of drone warfare, he reveals that the U.S. military is already building more unmanned than manned aerial vehicles. Predators helps us weigh the pros and cons of the drone program so that we can decide whether it is a vital strategic asset, a "frenemy," or a little of both.
Amazingly, life as an observer suspended in a wicker basket under an elephantine hydrogen balloon proved less deadly than piloting an airplane. From his grandstand seat, the observer kept tabs on the war below him and telephoned vital information to headquarters command. These reports were often the only accurate intelligence available. Balloonists remember the war as a great adventure, one which many of them lived to tell about.
Drone Warfare answers questions such as: Why did the United States invest so highly drone technology? When did all that start? What barriers had to be overcome? What was there before drones arrived? What roles did drones play in Iraq and Afghanistan? Were they successful? What new developments emerged during operations? Did they save lives? How many have been shot down and where? Will all air forces be drone based in the future? What other applications may arise in the civilian market?
In a timely publication, Drone Warfare sets the record straight on unmanned aerial vehicles and explores technology and usage around the globe.