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France to tack weapons onto spy drones – reports

Anonymous Coward

RAF Warrington

<polite cough>RAF Waddington</polite cough>

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Re: RAF Warrington

That's it's secret codename - now you have revealed it to our enemies

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Re: RAF Warrington

They probably got the name from someone living in nearby Quarrington.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: RAF Warrington

Best not to mention the secret base in Gulliver's world.

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Re: RAF Warrington

I was wondering if it was RAF Burtonwood or RNAS Stretton (HMS Blackcap) ...

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One more sep

towards turning warfare into a video game.

It's a lot easier to get someone to kill the enemy when they are on a tv screen than when you can hear the screams.

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Trollface

Re: One more sep

Traditional bombers wouldn't hear the screams in any case from their height.

Suicide bombers might, but that stops when they drop their payload.

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Re: One more sep

Traditional bombers wouldn't hear the screams in any case from their height.

True...but traditional antiaircraft fire, and traditional interceptors armed with traditional cannons and traditional missiles were pretty effective reminders to the bomber crew that they weren't playing a game on their Xbox

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Re: One more sep

By using a drone its a lot easier to vet the target and ensure that

a) you have the correct target

b) that there are no non-combatants around

c) the pilot(s) are unstressed, more situationally aware and more likely to make the correct decision

d) the chain of command is kept

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Re: One more sep

"c) the pilot(s) are unstressed, more situationally aware and more likely to make the correct decision"

Doesn't seem to be true -

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/jul/01/us-drone-whistleblowers-brussels-european-parliament

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Re: One more sep

Judging by reports only the last of these is true.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: One more sep

The people actually making the decisions about whether people will be killed or not are politicians and generals, and in their frame of reference warfare has been a mechanised process akin to a video game for ages.

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Rebranding exercise

Last year the Royal Air Force announced that it was rebranding the unmanned aerial vehicles as Protectors, to shake off the negative connotations of the Reaper name.

Will the RAF also be rebranding the Typhoon as Refreshing Breeze?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Rebranding exercise

Will the RAF also be rebranding the Typhoon as Refreshing Breeze?

How a about a nice friendly-sounding strapline? Something like "You only get a Boom with Typhoon"

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Devil

Re: Rebranding exercise

"Last year the Royal Air Force announced that it was rebranding the unmanned aerial vehicles as Protectors, to shake off the negative connotations of the Reaper name."

The RAF was instructed to do so by the ministry of peace

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Re: Rebranding exercise

Will the RAF also be rebranding the Typhoon as Refreshing Breeze?

Reminds me when Philip Morris rebranded to Altria to distance themselves from the stigma of their product (cigarettes) killing millions of people.

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Re: Rebranding exercise

Or the Ministry Of Truth.

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Joke

Re: Rebranding exercise

Or what about "It's not frightening if it's a Lightening"*

*To the people on the ground, the F35 pilots may err lose their heads.

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Trollface

"though she did not specify precisely what weapons"

Well, it's France, so obviously it'll be tactical nukes.

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Re: "though she did not specify precisely what weapons"

Hyper-velocity cheese, I would have assumed. Just to remind the Americans...

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Re: "though she did not specify precisely what weapons"

Rocket propelled Chateau Lafite 1972 ... Apparently, it was a very bad vintage.

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Re: "though she did not specify precisely what weapons"

Hyper-velocity cheese, I would have assumed.

Well if we're going down the traditional Python route...

They'll be fitted with auto-unfurling white flags.

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Re: "though she did not specify precisely what weapons"

Python you say ....

Well then you need a powered sheep and two canny French peasants to explain on a blackboard, ne c'est pas?

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Re: "though she did not specify precisely what weapons"

Considering the current area of operations, as back up they could use trained African Swallows carryiing

Coconut bombs.

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Coat

Name upgrade

To Grim reaper

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Insecticide weapons?

Whose drone was it you recently reported on doing battle with Asian hornets?

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Coat

Ower dronz weel fart in your general direktion, ha!

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Geneal Atomics Reaper drone

That sounds scary!

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Re: Geneal Atomics Reaper drone

Relax @frank ly - General Atomics are the outfit who (back in the fifties) nearly brought us the nuclear-bomb-powered Orion spacecraft weighing in at 3000 tonnes.

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Re: Geneal Atomics Reaper drone

Hey, don't diss 3000-tonne spacecraft! Up Goer Five tipped the scales at 3000 tonnes on the launchpad ready to go!

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Re: Geneal Atomics Reaper drone

If I recall correctly, the plan to launch Orion 'safely', was to build a launchpad on Antarctica. Plus, if I recall the schematics correctly, there didn't appear to be any way to steer the thing, or indeed, stop it, there was just one pusher plate at the bottom. Orion seems to be one of those back of the envelope calculations / pipe dreams that got taken a bit too seriously.

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Re: Geneal Atomics Reaper drone

" the nuclear-bomb-powered Orion spacecraft weighing in at 3000 tonnes."

You're missing a few zeros off that mass. The expected payload to Mars was 30,000 tons, let alone the gross mass.

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"Arming the drones will give them 'endurance,

Puzzled by this... adding payload will increase "endurance" as in flight time or survivability? Nether of which would happen by adding payload. Smells like double-speak.

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Spokesdrone probably meant survivability, as in taking AA batteries out with Hellfire missiles. Quite a stretch though.

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taking AA batteries out with Hellfire missiles.

I usually use a screwdriver, myself. But I've heard the new Duracell can be difficult?

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Anonymous Coward

Could be worse, they could be putting spy drones on weapons.

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Anonymous Coward

use a camera - get shot! and this is pre-drone lawfare

http://www.newcarlislenews.net/index.php/public-records/sheriff-reports-6/3290-deputy-shoots-new-carlisle-news-photographer

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Mushroom

Sacre bleu!!

Bleu you to hell in this case.

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So, 'Reaper' is now 'Protector', what are 'Hellfire' missiles? 'Heavenly Backrub Devices'?

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Mountain Dieu!

Ze french, zey are buying ze weapons Americain?

I thought they insisted on making everything themselves. And did pretty well at it. Whatever is the world coming to?

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Critics

"Critics have pointed out that this reduces the killing of human beings to a mechanised process carried out through a screen and a controller, much like a video game. ®"

...because as we all know, manned ariel attacks, cruise missiles, artillery strikes and any other potential form of beyond visual range weaponry all require someone to see the whites of the victims eyes before they press the kill button

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Re: Critics

Manned aircraft are piloted by individuals who are usually overloaded and in the case of Navy pilots well beyond exhaustion and kept going by amphetamines - which has provably affected their judgement in many cases.

Remotely operated aircraft can have any number of people involved, looking at the same things the pilot is looking at and aiming the weapons/deciding what to do whilst the operator/pilot gets on with the job of keeping the thing flying and pointed in the right direction. The bigger problem at the moment is that the operator is being tasked with doing virtually everything including pushing the fire button and this is causing situational awareness problems.

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Disappointed

I initially read the sub-heading as "Rappers currently used solely for surveillance". That would have been much more fun.

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You young guys need to grow up and grow a pair. I can assure you that it never feels like a TV game.

Unfortunately there are a small number of extremely horrible people in the world. You cannot debate with them. Their minds are made up and they won't change it. The only way to handle them is to remove them. However, a game, it is not.

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