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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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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 the same resolution that created the Isrieli state no less!]


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:

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
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.

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.

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.

"Game reviewers fought each other to write the most glowing coverage possible for the powerhouse Sony, MS systems. Reviewers flipped coins to see who would review the Nintendo Wii. The losers got stuck with the job." -- Andy Marken
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