The Military Utility of Drones
Drones have assumed a leading role in counterterrorism and counterinsurgency, and are projected to be of growing importance in future military operations. Their low cost makes them expendable and ideal for highly dangerous or politically sensitive missions. However, technical limitations as well as likely improvements in competing technologies, notably air defence systems, shall circumscribe the military role of drones. Although an integral part of future warfare, they are unlikely to fully replace manned aircraft and will instead, complement them.
© 2010 Center for Security Studies (CSS), ETH Zurich