Eye in the Sky

Deep in the caves of Afghanistan, across the deserts of Iraq and Syria, and along the coast of the Horn of Africa, lurks a threat to the United States that is intent on imposing their will on us by way of violence and terror. These threats never rest, and the ideology is constantly spreading like a disease. We can see this on our television almost daily. But some things we don’t see, are the drug cartels that control the south side of the U.S. and Mexican border, and the human traffickers that bring victims into our country by the thousands.

MQ-9 by Nail Khusnutdinov CC BY 2.0

AROUND THE GLOBE

The use of these incredibly intelligent and capable marvels of technology are not unique to the military, or even lethal force for that matter. The have had an immense impact on the intelligence gathering communities around the world. They go far beyond just a strike capability, but have been able to provide intelligence to various defense agencies that are able to prevent lethal actions against Americans before they happen. With their ability to loiter above a target for hours at a time, at altitudes that make it undetectable to the human ear, it is the go-to technology for watching our enemies. It’s perfect because they are of course, unmanned, which eliminates the human fatigue factor, that a pilot would not be able to endure. There have been countless lives saved (not just American) because these drones were able to seek out and eliminate threats before they happen, or provide the intelligence to decision makers to act before lives are lost.


IN THE HOMELAND

Along the America’s southern border, as we speak, smugglers are illegally entering our country. They bring with them drugs, guns, ammunition, sex slaves, and immigrants. Of course, those are the tip of the iceberg, but they are the most glaring. However, they is a way to watch for these activities, autonomously and constantly. Drones. They have the ability to remain airborne for hours at a time, never get tired, and are always watching. As the FBI, DEA, CIA and ATF build leads to catch cartels and human traffickers, that intelligence can be exponentially expanded upon, providing extremely valuable, real time intel to make the most of every precious hour when trying to stop crime. The average American does see this on the news, they don’t research it, and don’t talk about it. But those threats are very real, very dangerous, and are happening as you’re reading this article…and there is better way to stop it. Using unmanned aerial systems is the answer. Jerek Buss for the National Interest wrote, “Drones are already a key component of the U.S. Border Patrol’s efforts to build a “virtual wall.” First deployed in 2005, unarmed Predator drones can fly twenty-hour missions and reach speeds of 275 mph, extending surveillance over the most remote parts of the border”(Buss, 2017). These machines are capable of seeing where we can see, going where we cant go, and doing what we cant do. When the threats against us are ever-increasing, it is imperative we have the right technology and techniques to stop them.


IN CONCLUSION

This is been a hot topic of discussion over the past few years as drone usage has grown and evolved. The controversy is alive and well in our country, and other drone-using countries. There are absolutely two sides to this coin, are they being used only to stop crime and terror, or are the liberties and privacy of civilians being infringed upon? How far will it go? Where has the line been drawn? How do we prevent the immoral and illegal use of drones? These are questions that have been debated on time and time gain. It’s time for you to join the discussion. This is a matter of the future of America, a very important matter at that. Please share you thoughts and comments below, and let the world know what you think.

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