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The Iranian government announced earlier in the year it has started UAV development

Iran remains a nation closely watched by the United States and the rest of the western world, especially now that the country is developing a more sophisticated unmanned drone program. U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates is concerned with the progress of Iranian drone development, and there is a growing concern the drone technology could be sold to terrorist groups.

"Countries like Iran are developing their own UAVs and already have a UAV capability," said Gates, speaking in front of the Senate Appropriations Committee.  "That is a concern, because it is one of these areas where -- if they chose to, in Iraq, in Afghanistan -- they could create difficulties for us."

The country began development in February, seeking to manufacture "advanced" UAVs able to conduct surveillance and coordinated strikes.  Furthermore, if the country is successful in developing nuclear weapons, there is a grave concern the drones could one day be used to attack major targets.  

Even so, the U.S. military has an advanced air fleet that should be capable of shooting down the drones according to military analysts.

The U.S. military continually uses UAVs in coordinated airstrikes in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan, with the Pakistani military expected to receive UAV technology from the U.S.  Russia also is developing advanced UAVs for future use, with European news reports specifically mentioning their use to prevent attacks from terrorists based in Chechnya.

It's also possible UAVs will be used to patrol the Somali coast to help locate and identify pirates before they are able to hijack commercial vessels. 



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Fixed.
By therealnickdanger on 4/7/2010 8:14:53 AM , Rating: 1
quote:
Iran Developing Unmanned Drone Technology; U.S. Officials Concerned... But Likely Don't Actually Care

Our current administration just can't seem to resist ceding whatever strength and advantage we have to other powers. Every withdraw we make financially or militarily on the world stage only weakens us and our allies.




RE: Fixed.
By retrospooty on 4/7/2010 8:19:19 AM , Rating: 2
You say that as if you have the answer, and that the obvius simple answer eludes the govt. but you left out the answer.

What exactly are you suggesting our govt do about this? Think about it. not so simple is it?


RE: Fixed.
By therealnickdanger on 4/7/10, Rating: -1
RE: Fixed.
By nvalhalla on 4/7/2010 9:07:50 AM , Rating: 5
Did you use your precognition to learn Iran will attack us, or do you just like killing people for no reason? Strike that, having other people kill for you. I'm sure you never served...


RE: Fixed.
By MrBlastman on 4/7/10, Rating: -1
RE: Fixed.
By Spivonious on 4/7/10, Rating: -1
RE: Fixed.
By MrBlastman on 4/7/10, Rating: -1
RE: Fixed.
By Spivonious on 4/7/2010 1:47:40 PM , Rating: 1
You better not realize that there are millions of muslims living in the U.S. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Islam_in_the_United_S... ). They might even live next door! Putting out a blanket statement about how all muslims want to kill non-muslims is completely ridiculous.


RE: Fixed.
By MrBlastman on 4/7/2010 3:36:09 PM , Rating: 1
Not next to my house if I can help it. If I'm truly against one thing, it is Islam. I gave them a chance, once upon a time, back when they crashed planes into us, however, they have succeeded in proving to me that the chance I gave them was a futile one at best.

You're right, they don't all want us dead, only the very religion they practice does. If you read the Qur'an, it will become quite apparent at how bloodthirsty and irrational the religion really is.

Ishmael was a thug in ancient times, and when his decendents formed the unchanging religion, they made sure to include these thuggish practices. I challenge you, please, prove to me that Islam is not like a modern day gang once more in any way at all.


RE: Fixed.
By jhb116 on 4/7/2010 7:48:58 PM , Rating: 3
Dude - you a racist idiot. The individuals responsible for 9/11 are a fanatical group that just happens to worship Islam. That would be like hating Catholics because of the IRA bombings in Ireland.

Muslims, in general, are a peace loving group not much different than most other religions. The terrorists have twisted the Koran to fit their goals. Sounds a little bit like Al Gore and carbon credits. :)


RE: Fixed.
By MrBlastman on 4/7/2010 11:40:22 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Dude - you a racist idiot


Since when is Islam a specific race. Last time I checked, someone who practices it can be white, black, hispanic, asian or whatever.

quote:
The individuals responsible for 9/11 are a fanatical group that just happens to worship Islam.


Islam is the poison, the fanatics that abuse it, just stir the poison right and manipulate it in their favor. Did you not know there are two versions of the Qur'an--an English, and an Arabic. The Arabic version is _far_ different in certain places. It is dark, forboding and shows a nasty side to the religion.

quote:
Muslims, in general, are a peace loving group


They are? Tell that to the women who are stoned to death for wearing a wrong piece of clothing, or disobeying their husband. Tell that to the women who are buried up to their necks, while men are only buried up to their waists, where if the man or woman manages to escape the circle of stoning before dying, they are absolved and get to live.

The women... have no chance. They are purposefully given no chance at escape.

There is no peace in Islam. It is a sick, twisted mess of a "religion" that is incredibly barbaric and nasty.


RE: Fixed.
By Spivonious on 4/8/2010 11:34:30 AM , Rating: 2
Geez, ever read the Bible?

What about the Crusades? What about the violence in Ireland? Islam is not the only religion with fanatical groups.


RE: Fixed.
By gamerk2 on 4/7/2010 2:50:40 PM , Rating: 2
Please. As usual, some people just listen to the ones that yell the loudest.

The main reasons most people in the mideast hate the US are:
1: Unconditonally back Isriel [Remember, they technically are an occuping power occuping land the UN GAVE to Palestine...in the same resolution that created the Isrieli state no less!]

and

2: Backed dictators that were anti-communist [Iran being the first example, Iraq being the second]

Pre-emptivly striking Iran would be a disaster. For one, the Saudies would likely order us to stop using their land as a stageing base, as would Turkey. So our supply lines would go to hell. Next, Iran has a fairly modern military [SU-27's and Mig-29's are a good match for F-16's and early F-15 models] which would take a while to whittle down. Next, you'd likely re-radicalize Iraq again in the process. Nevermind the US simply doesn't have the physical manpower to launch an invasion of anyone right now, or that current equipment, due to prolonged use, is in desperate need of repair. And I don't even want to think about how the other Islamic nations would react (especially toward Isriel).

Nevermind the overwhelming majority of Iranian citizens are pro-US, or they see their leader as a dictator. Attack Iran now, and you lose the country. Better to lay on the pressure (Iran currently has 20% unemployment and run-away inflation) through the UN, and watch how stable Irans leadership is as their countries economy falls apart around them.

Maybe you should learn some political tact, instead of starting a thrid front in a war that by most analysis, we are hardly winning to begin with? Just a thought...


RE: Fixed.
By MrBlastman on 4/7/2010 4:01:14 PM , Rating: 2
I guess you missed this one part of my post a few spots above. Here, I'll repeat it for you:

quote:
As long as Iran is pent up inside its borders, we can let them rot. As long as we don't let them expand, they can sit where they are at. As soon as they get nukes, we won't have to do anything about them. The Israeli's have been quiet adamant what they will do about just that.


I never suggested we attack Iran. Please don't put words in my mouth.

Now, unless you did actually catch that, I'll assume you are not condemning me for badmouthing Islam. In America, we have freedom of speech, and are not governed by Sharia law that prevents us speaking down on it.


RE: Fixed.
By MasterBlaster7 on 4/7/2010 7:03:54 PM , Rating: 2
I would like to reply to this comment, as it seems an intelligent and thought out rebuttal. However, I do not agree with some of your conclusions.

1. Unconditionally backing Israel and middle east hate...mostly right

2. Backing anti-communist dictators...mostly right, as the middle east hate goes, but it was a good play for the times. Remember we backed Iran when it was headed by the Shaw who was not dissimilar to our allegiance with Saudi Arabia today. Saddam...back in those days was far more controllable (we are talking late cold war here). This changed in 89 when the Soviet Union fell. Just 2 years later Saddam got cocky and made his move on Kuwait...and the rest is history.

My major concern in this response is your position on a Preemptive strike on Iran.

It would not be a disaster, however right now would be poor timing.

Yes we might lose Saudi Arabia and Turkey as a staging area. That would be rough logistically but acceptable. We could use both Iraq and Afghanistan as excellent staging areas as they both boarder the west and east sides of Iran respectively. We also have significant military presence in both areas.

Those SU-27s and Mig-29s? yah we would stomp on them in about a week (if not less time). I remember one f-22 pilot who downed 8 F-15s in a simulation to 0 loss of aircraft. He said it was like "clubbing baby seals". We got about 144 of those planes right now combat ready. I doubt we would lose 1 plane stomping their "air force".

Iraq would probably do its usual round of suicide bombers. Nothing to get excited about.

As for man power and equipment. It is in "good enough" shape through all of the "start" programs for revitalizing our worn equipment. Remember we aren't fighting soviet Russia here and our military victories in the region usually take about 2 weeks (I'm not talking insurgent engagements)

And what "other" Islamic nations? Syria? "pfft"

Yes it is good that a majority of Iranians are pro-US right now. I think "people wise" Iranians are far more civilized than Iraqi's which is excellent for a post Iatola regime change.

Now let me tell you how I think things should go down. I remarked earlier on timing. Right now we have basically "roughly secured" Iraq. A security that would be enhanced by a regime changed Iran. However, we are in the process of securing Afghanistan with operation Moshtoraq and our upcoming offensive in Kandahar. Securing Afghanistan might take 2 or 3 years. I agree...pressure diplomacy during this time would be correct. However, if Afghanistan is roughly secured by say 2012, it would be an excellent time to move on Iran. We would have forces in place on both sides of their country. The nuclear pressure will likely to have greatly increased and public opinion would be more on our side.

My favorite scenario...The Israelis launch a preemptive strike against Iran's nuclear facilities. Iran is outraged and launches its "limited" strikes against the US and Israel. The US launches a full bombing campaign against Iran's nuclear facilities. Buildup of 250-500 troops in Iraq and Afghanistan. Full invasion. Regime change. The price of oil dramatically drops. Iraq and Afghanistan more secure. Iran fights an insurgency against the occupiers for a few years (less than Iraq) but as democracy takes hold the people of Iran embrace it more than the Iraqi's ever did. Syria is basically defanged. And, the Middle East is finally secure.


RE: Fixed.
By Mk4ever on 4/7/2010 10:10:32 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Yes it is good that a majority of Iranians are pro-US right now. I think "people wise" Iranians are far more civilized than Iraqi's which is excellent for a post Iatola regime change.


??

Where did you get that from??

I don't mean any disrespect, in fact I agree with some of what you said.

Reality check from a guy who lived his whole life in the middle east, only for those interested in knowing the truth (saying this cause I know I'll be down-rated)

I am Iraqi, living in Saudi Arabia, went to jordan, syria and iraq. and guess what, when people tell you that your media is biased, it really is.

You know about middle east only what your government want you to believe. Trust me on this one.

Since 1948 events in Palestine, Arabs have become obsessed with news. We watch, listen to, and read news daily from all possible sources. I personally hate news, yet I read from at least 2 sources daily. Sometimes, I open all possible sources just to compare how the same news were reported. What a difference.

Reality is, most of those in the middle east hate kneeling to every wish the USA dictates on our leaders. We are sick of supporting Israel unconditionally (especially when it becomes more personal, as in, when many of my Palestinian friends and/or their families have suffered one way or another from Israeli occupation), and we take high pride in resistance, including Hamas, Hezbollah, Syria and Iran (Incidentally, Iran, the country that USA is considering a threat, hasn't initiated a war in a very long long time. Irani-Iraqi war was because of Saddam, he signed a paper for drawing borders, then he changed his mind, backed by USA, irony!).

Nijad in Iran is truly loved by the majority. If you read enough about his life, his care for poor people of his nation, and the pride and significant scientific achievements Iran saw with him, you'll know that all that I am describing makes sense.

Since the USA decided to interfere with arab media and what arabs hear, many of our own media is starting to exhibit USA-like news, augmenting specific parts and neglecting others. It is no wonder then that some arabs/middle easterns are falling into such media and starting to change their views. So when those people (for example, mousawi supporters in Iran) start protesting against Nijad in Tehran, the are actually just a few thousands out of millions, but surely USA-pro media will concentrate on this.

By the way, let me illustrate the power of media, my closest brother moved to Canada 9 years ago, and since he currently only hear USA-pro media, his principles are gradually starting to change. No wonder your government is focusing on media and news in the middle east, trying to ban Hamas's and Hezbullah's TV transmission. Media truly can change how people think.

If you wanna have a closer idea of what people in the middle east think, or what really happens, visit al-jazeera english more frequently. This isn't always the reality, but it's closer than anything else.

Finally, the middle east situation is really and truly complicated. You will have to read a lot, listen a lot, and live at least for a few years here too, and you still won't get the complete picture.

I hope no one will claim they understand what the middle east situation is all about if I myself, a native, cannot claim such a thing.


RE: Fixed.
By hadifa on 4/8/2010 12:08:37 AM , Rating: 2
I have lived in Middle east and Iran for that matter so I think I need to at least touch on two points you made.

quote:
Nijad in Iran is truly loved by the majority.


Not really. In the previous election in Iran, he most likely won. In the last one, they definitely rigged the election and the evidence were all over the place. There are many who still like/love him there specially in poorer areas, but it's not the majority, not by a long shot. You can see this through comparing the pro government rallies and anti governments ones and see the result easily. Alternatively you can check the evidences of the rigging specially if you know Persian. Based on my experience with friends I have all over middle east, he is by far more liked outside Iran than inside. I noticed the non-Iranians take all the negative news about him as manufactured by the US or Iran's enemies.

quote:
If you wanna have a closer idea of what people in the middle east think, or what really happens, visit al-jazeera english more frequently. This isn't always the reality, but it's closer than anything else.


Al-jazeera is DEFINITLY not less biased than most well-known western media. Actually, it's more biased. The English version is much better than the Arabic one, yet it's clearly following an agenda. That said, it is much better balanced than the media outlets in middle east.
It's good to have a look at though to see a different perspective on some of the issues.

I think you are very right in saying that we need to have a look at a few different news agencies to get a better perspective.

By the way, me Iraqi too.


RE: Fixed.
By Wikipedia User on 4/7/10, Rating: 0
RE: Fixed.
By banthracis on 4/7/2010 9:53:08 AM , Rating: 2
You guys are aware our current UAV technology was initially created using off the shelf commercial components. It's much easier to build a UAV than an actual plane.

Or think of it this way, a remote control plane with a camera and antenna attached is a UAV. If Iran has the equivalent of a mod of a toy we've been selling in stores for decades, I'm not exactly worried.


RE: Fixed.
By retrospooty on 4/7/2010 10:15:20 AM , Rating: 1
"The answer should be simple and obvious: preemptive strike. "

LOL -that is one of the least educated things I have ever heard anyone say in my life. I seriously hope you were joking.

Striking at Iran would galvanize the entire Muslim world against us and suicide bombers would increase 10, perhaps 100x. It would truly be "Jihad".

OK for Iraq and Afganistan, there were obvious reasons to invade, but Iran - we would just be seen as the aggressor, trying snuff out Muslim states.

IF there is ANY solution, it is to get out of the middle east entirely and get off their oil. They just want us out, and they are right, we have no place there.


RE: Fixed.
By wiz220 on 4/7/2010 1:07:41 PM , Rating: 2
Actually by your logic it would make perfect sense to attack Iran. You stated that there were "obvious reasons" for invading Iraq. The primary "reason" for invading was the development of WMD, of which we had no clear evidence and the intelligence was poor.

In Iran on the other hand you have hard line religious zealots running a country and we KNOW that they have a nuclear program. Whether you think it is truly for peaceful purposes or weapons, I'll let you decide. But we definitely know the program exists as opposed to the evidence of "they have some aluminum tubes!"

Add that with evidence that Iran is training insurgents and helping the Taliban and you have all the justification necessary for attacking Iran. I'm honestly amazed that Bush never did it. Sorta makes me think that the reasons for going into Iraq were not what the administration said they were.


RE: Fixed.
By retrospooty on 4/7/2010 2:12:57 PM , Rating: 2
"Sorta makes me think that the reasons for going into Iraq were not what the administration said they were."

Absolutly true... But my point is that invading Iran would galvanize the whole Muslim world against us. Iraq didnt, primarily because the whole country hated Sadaam. The people were behind the US... Remember toppleing hte stture, cheering and parades in the streets.

If we invaded Iran, it would be very VERY different. They would see us an an agressor butting in where we dont below. Even the people protesting agains the govt would not be on our side. Other nations would jion in as well, against us. It would literally be an all out holy war insuring new generations of suicide bombers for decades to come.


RE: Fixed.
By retrospooty on 4/7/2010 2:13:57 PM , Rating: 2
damn keyboard. " toppleing hte stture," - toppling the Statue of Sadaam


RE: Fixed.
By gamerk2 on 4/7/2010 2:52:31 PM , Rating: 2
Agreed. Start an un-justified war in Iran, and the entire mid-east would likely get involved. [Oil Embargo anyone?]

Nevermind that we need Turkey and the Saudies to maintain our lines of supply...


RE: Fixed.
By therealnickdanger on 4/7/2010 2:31:43 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Striking at Iran would galvanize the entire Muslim world against us and suicide bombers would increase 10, perhaps 100x. It would truly be "Jihad".

People said the same thing about Afghanistan and Iraq, but it never materialized:
http://www.mediaglobal.org/article/2008-05-21/terr...

Iran is proving itself a greater threat every day. If the stockpiling of weapons, pursuit of WMDs, and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's many threats to destroy Israel aren't enough, then what? How long did the world ignore Hitler before he started his campaign?


RE: Fixed.
By retrospooty on 4/7/2010 2:37:23 PM , Rating: 2
no, after 9/11 - going in after Al Qaeda and the people that harbored them was totally justified. It couldnt gain any traction, and Iraq hated Sadaam, and celebrated in the streets when we ousted him. Its not the same. Not at all the same


RE: Fixed.
By retrospooty on 4/7/2010 2:42:26 PM , Rating: 2
"Iran is proving itself a greater threat every day. If the stockpiling of weapons, pursuit of WMDs, and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's many threats to destroy Israel aren't enough, then what? How long did the world ignore Hitler before he started his campaign? "

Uh... Hitler invaded alot of countries and was open and obvious with his intention to conquer the world. Iran hasn't done anything to anyone other than verbal.

If they do, then justification can be made, but they havent done a damn thing yet. Comparing them to Hitler is totally invalid and shows you know zero about Iran and hte middle east in general.


RE: Fixed.
By farbdogg on 4/7/2010 4:21:53 PM , Rating: 2
How is comparing Hitler to Ahmadinejad invalid? Hitler started by talking and blaming the jews. He then developed tanks and arms for war. Ahmadinejad made it clear he wants to wipe Israel off the map. He's now openly developing nuclear weapons. But I guess we know 0 about the middle east. You do have a point though, Ahmadinejad doesn't recognize there was a Holocaust, so comparing them is trivial...


RE: Fixed.
By retrospooty on 4/7/2010 6:24:25 PM , Rating: 2
It doesn't matter what you think he MIGHT so. As a nation and the worlds superpower, we cant just invade a country becasue they MIGHT do something. Hitler did alot, a hell of a lot before the rest of the world got involved.

Ahmadinejad is not the true power in Iran. He is also alot like Biden with the verbal gaffs. Ther eis a huge difference between stating we should wipe Israel off the map and actually doing something about it as a national policy. that is a HUGER step. Iran hasn't taken it, you cant just invade.


RE: Fixed.
By cyberserf on 4/8/2010 2:37:34 AM , Rating: 1
In other news, the Iraqis have created a clone of Sadam and re-established him as ruler and will do an preemptive strike on the US with camels as the weapons of destruction.


RE: Fixed.
By CU on 4/7/2010 9:08:56 AM , Rating: 3
He may not know the answer. And I am sure there is no simple answer. But the military is going down hill. The USAF is laying off officers. I thought that was the one job that you couldn't be laid off of. And more lay offs are expected next year. We are reducing our nukes, stopping development of newer nukes, not replacing old planes with newer ones. The list goes on and I assume the other branches are doing similar things.

Now while no one really knows if this will tempt a larger country or smaller terrorist factions to attack us or an allie, do you really want to find out. Better safe than sorry.


RE: Fixed.
By invidious on 4/7/2010 10:03:43 AM , Rating: 2
Maybe we will get lucky and China will invade Japan or something, then the threat will scare us into electing a real president again and we can start a good old fassion arms race.

I'm sure sure how much of that was sarcasm. Maybe 40%?


RE: Fixed.
By Flunk on 4/7/2010 8:59:00 AM , Rating: 2
I think you're going massively over the top to further your own agenda. This article is about a foreign government starting UAV research. Something we've been doing for more than 15 years. It's not really relavent to the current administration and the only thing we could really do to stop it is attack Iran, no level of sanctions would help.


RE: Fixed.
By hadifa on 4/8/2010 12:17:52 AM , Rating: 2
I'm not sure but this seems like scare tactics in order to increase the military budget or justifying something like that. Iran had UAV capabilities even during the war with IRAQ many years ago. <p/ >The idea is not new at all. They were used mainly for recon but with a very limited radius. Maybe they are substantially improving their drone's capabilities or putting more resources in R&D or production.


RE: Fixed.
By hadifa on 4/8/2010 12:18:09 AM , Rating: 2
I'm not sure but this seems like scare tactics in order to increase the military budget or justifying something like that. Iran had UAV capabilities even during the war with IRAQ many years ago.

The idea is not new at all. They were used mainly for recon but with a very limited radius. Maybe they are substantially improving their drone's capabilities or putting more resources in R&D or production.


UAVs
By ZachDontScare on 4/7/2010 4:54:30 PM , Rating: 4
In other news, Tyco reported stronger than usual sales last quarter in its RC plane division.




Drone Wars?
By AntiM on 4/7/2010 8:18:52 AM , Rating: 2
The US will use their drones to shoot down Iranian drones. Is this the start of the "Drone Wars"? Humankind has the intelligence to build robots and drones, but not the intelligence to realize the folly of war.




Uh oh!
By Ammohunt on 4/7/2010 2:50:20 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
The Iranian government announced earlier in the year it has started UAV development


This is great news for Iranian goat herders!




GPS
By ol1bit on 4/7/2010 10:55:00 PM , Rating: 2
I'm about 99.9^ sure these drones use GPS to figure out where they are. Without good ol US's GPS, they are in big trouble. It will still work, but, hard to hit a real target.

We can disable GPS anytime we want.




"Advanced Air Fleet"
By Goty on 4/8/2010 1:16:42 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Even so, the U.S. military has an advanced air fleet that should be capable of shooting down the drones...


Oh, wait, no we don't. That program got canceled.




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