theatlantic
I don’t want to be thick-witted here. I understand that on some level a democracy generally elects human leaders who will not abuse the spirit of the law. I think Barack Obama is such a leader. That is for the historians to determine. But practically, much of our foreign policy now depends on the hope of benevolent dictators and philosopher kings. The law can’t help. The law is what the kings say it is.
reuters
The drones were terrifying. From the ground, it is impossible to determine who or what they are tracking as they circle overhead. The buzz of a distant propeller is a constant reminder of imminent death. Drones fire missiles that travel faster than the speed of sound. A drone’s victim never hears the missile that kills him.

David Rohde, in the Reuters Magazine article “The Drone Wars.”

Read the rest of the article | Download Reuters Magazine [PDF]

(via reuters)
pantslessprogressive
pantslessprogressive:

“Drone aircraft, best known for their role in hunting and destroying terrorist hide-outs in Afghanistan, may soon be coming to the skies near you.Police agencies want drones for air support to spot runaway criminals. Utility companies believe they can help monitor oil, gas and water pipelines. Farmers think drones could aid in spraying their crops with pesticides.“It’s going to happen,” said Dan Elwell, vice president of civil aviation at the Aerospace Industries Assn. “Now it’s about figuring out how to safely assimilate the technology into national airspace.”That’s the job of the Federal Aviation Administration, which plans to propose new rules for the use of small drones in January, a first step toward integrating robotic aircraft into the nation’s skyways.The agency has issued 266 active testing permits for civilian drone applications but hasn’t permitted drones in national airspace on a wide scale out of concern that the pilotless craft don’t have an adequate “detect, sense and avoid” technology to prevent midair collisions.Other concerns include privacy — imagine a camera-equipped drone buzzing above your backyard pool party — and the creative ways in which criminals and terrorists might use the machines.”
Idea of civilians using drone aircraft may soon fly with FAA

pantslessprogressive:

“Drone aircraft, best known for their role in hunting and destroying terrorist hide-outs in Afghanistan, may soon be coming to the skies near you.

Police agencies want drones for air support to spot runaway criminals. Utility companies believe they can help monitor oil, gas and water pipelines. Farmers think drones could aid in spraying their crops with pesticides.

“It’s going to happen,” said Dan Elwell, vice president of civil aviation at the Aerospace Industries Assn. “Now it’s about figuring out how to safely assimilate the technology into national airspace.”

That’s the job of the Federal Aviation Administration, which plans to propose new rules for the use of small drones in January, a first step toward integrating robotic aircraft into the nation’s skyways.

The agency has issued 266 active testing permits for civilian drone applications but hasn’t permitted drones in national airspace on a wide scale out of concern that the pilotless craft don’t have an adequate “detect, sense and avoid” technology to prevent midair collisions.

Other concerns include privacy — imagine a camera-equipped drone buzzing above your backyard pool party — and the creative ways in which criminals and terrorists might use the machines.”

Idea of civilians using drone aircraft may soon fly with FAA