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Consider consequences of armed drone warfare

In the March 9 News article about the 107th Air Wing’s new mission remotely piloting drone aircraft, unit commander Col. John J. Higgins said: “It’s not like you’re out there flying every day. But what’s really different is that you’re going into combat. You can drop off the kids in the morning, fly a mission wherever they need you, maybe even pull a trigger. And 10 hours later, you’re done and you go pick up the kids.”

Now just imagine a not-too-distant future day when pilot X picks up the kids after work: “Hey, kids, how about some burgers and shakes for dinner?” They excitedly shout, “Sure.” Then Bobby asks, “Hey, Dad, how many did you get today? I’m pretty good on computer games; maybe I can fly drones some day.” Dad replies, “Why, Bobby, it’s as easy as a joystick; maybe I got 30 or 40.” Bobby asks, “Dad, have you ever hit any kids?” Pilot X says, “Naaah, do you think that our president or the military would ever allow that? Anyway, let’s go get those burgers.”

Now imagine yet another future day when autonomous armed drones, which already exist, are flying. Pilot X and the kids are having dinner …

Gene Grabiner

Buffalo