American War Zone: Military Drones To Replace Police Helicopters By 2025

AvengerThe Avenger extended-range UAV is manufactured by General Atomics. (General Atomics)

The green light is on for military drone makers to transform America’s police force into a military complex similar to Afghanistan. Comprehensive geospatial intelligence will become ubiquitous, tracking every moving object on the ground. They will be equipped with super-high resolution cameras and AI-based facial recognition systems that will be able to identify a mole on your left cheek. License plate readers? Child’s play. This is no longer an argument over privacy, it is now an argument over total suppression of freedom and liberty. In Technocracy language, it is the ultimate in Scientific Dictatorship.  TN Editor

By 2025, enormous military-style drones – close relatives of the sort made famous by counterterrorism strikes in Afghanistan and Iraq – will be visible 2,000 feet above U.S. cities, streaming high-resolution video to police departments below. That is the bet that multiple defense contractors are placing, anyway, as they race to build unmanned aircraft that can pass evolving airworthiness certifications and replace police helicopters. And if that bet pays off, it will radically transform the way cities, citizens, and law enforcement interact.

There’s a reason big drones like the General Atomics Reaper aren’t already flying over the United States. The federal rules that govern aircraft in U.S. airspace are much stricter than those that cover U.S. military drones overseas. Many of the Federal Aviation Authority’s regulations were drafted for manned aircraft, long before unmanned flight across the United States was even a possibility. Now the FAA is working with the private sector to update its rules for the age of ubiquitous unmanned flight, and that will open the floodgates.

“The market won’t exist until the regulations exist,” said Matthew Scassero, director of the University of Maryland Unmanned Aircraft Systems Test Site. “The FAA was a little slow in coming around to the realization that we needed to get those in place.”

Unlike many new industries, which grow unfettered until emerging problems prompt regulation, unmanned flight needs relief from existing restrictions in order to blossom, Scassero said. Once that happens, the market for large unmanned planes could be enormous.

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Imagine drones trying to save people in Houston, or after a nuclear attack. What are they thinking?

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