Perhaps the greatest advantage of UAV weaponry is its ability to strike targets swiftly over a large swath of territory. Other more “traditional” assets such as armored vehicles and fighter aircraft can take time to assemble and utilize. UAV’s, on the other hand, can often be utilized at a moment’s notice. This is extremely useful when the military is tasked with acting on time-sensitive intelligence. UAV’s allow the United States to project force into remote regions that might otherwise be inaccessible to other assets.
A negative aspect of UAV technology is its accessibility to American adversaries. UAV’s provide malign states and non-state actors with a cost-effective means of force projection in the region. The inexpensive and versatile nature of UAV’s empowers adversaries that might typically struggle to purchase or develop the type of weaponry that is needed to project power over the region. While UAV weaponry is a major American asset, it has also led to the proliferation of force projection by our foes.