The National Security ForumPresents
The Future of
Unmanned Air Power:
Implications for Policy & Strategy
Lt General Dave Deptula
The Ramada, Friday, May 6th, 9:00 am
America’s armed forces are relying more extensively on unmanned aircraft and other vehicles (UAVs) to provide intelligence as well as striking targets. The CIA, in particular, has employed UAVs against target sets in Pakistan as well as Afghanistan, and may be employing them in Libya.
The increased use of UAVs reflects a number of considerations. First, drones do not require pilots, reducing the possibility of personnel injuries, deaths or captures. Second, they are deployed with a number of intelligence assets backing them up, which increases potential for hitting defined targets and reducing collateral damage. Third, the UAVs at all levels can loiter for extremely long times in the battle zones. The U.S. has relied more on “kinetic operations” and drones recently, perhaps indicating a shift away from the “population centric” counter-insurgency strategy.
At the same time, the increased use of drones at all levels has raised moral and legal issues. Aircraft, piloted by people far from the battlefield (e.g. Creech AFB), raise the question whether it makes war less personal and more susceptible to military application. American Predator/Reaper operations have become the subject of intense propaganda by AQ, the Taliban, and many groups in Pakistan. Deptula says this represents an attempt to limit what he claims is a very, very effective weapon.
The General said he would be open to discussing the increasingly important topic of “Cyber Warfare’, subject to not going into classified material.
General Deptula recently retired as the U.S. Air Force’s Deputy Chief of Staff for ISR. He will describe the UAV/ISR systems in use, from small robotic planes employed by the Army at the tactical level to the Reaper and beyond. Deptula has twice been a JTF Commander; was the principal attack planner for the Desert Storm air campaign; and orchestrated air ops over Iraq in 1998-99 and Afghanistan in 2001. He has over 3,000 flying hours and more than 400 combat flying hours in the F-15.
Please join us for what will be a most interesting and timely discussion. The meeting will be strictly off the record.
Please RSVP (ACCEPTANCES ONLY) to this email or by calling 746-3222. A complete breakfast will be served. There will be a $15 dollar charge at the door for the presentation and breakfast. We recommend arriving by 8:30 to enjoy some pre-presentation food and conversation. The Ramada is located on 6th St. between Wells and Sutro, just off the Wells Ave. exit off I-80.
This presentation is open to the public, but we do ask for RSVPs from those attending.
Many retired senior officers, like GEN Deptula, will be coming to Reno for the Nevada Military Support Alliance dinner the next night and should be joining this session!