Weaponized MQ-9 Reaper with camera. GA
Will Chuck Hagel Stand Up to the Drone Lobby? -- Winslow Wheeler, Foreign Policy
Or will he be yet another victim of Pentagon operators?
U.S. Central Command has released some interesting numbers on the performance of modern air systems in Afghanistan; the data do not auger well for our defenses in the next decade, nor for the suitability of the man who appears likely to be the next secretary of defense, former Senator Chuck Hagel -- his admirable iconoclasm toward some national security dogmas notwithstanding.
With the Department of Defense budget looking at no real growth or even reductions in the next few years, there will be a clear need for defense systems that offer more performance for less cost. The data from Afghanistan on what drones are contributing to the war there show that we are getting little but paying a lot, the reverse of what we will need in the future.
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My Comment: What caught my eye in this report was the breakdown of costs .... bottom line .... drones are not cheap, and operating them cost a lot. There is a lot of data in this report .... read it all.