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Drones in Iraq & Syria: French Kurds

Veteran News
Veteran News
October 13, 2016
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Terrorist groups in Iraq and Syria have begun weaponizing store-bought drones for use against coalition forces in Iraq and Syria, the Pentagon said on Wednesday.Both French and Kurdish forces were attacked in northern Iraq recently. Air Force spokesman Col. John Dorrian said an improvised explosive device on a drone exploded after it was retrieved by Kurdish forces and taken to a camp near the Iraqi city of Irbil.He referred to it as a “Trojan Horse-style attack.”Two Kurds were killed in that incident on Oct. 2. The drone appeared to be a Styrofoam model plane taped together in a very rudimentary way. It was carrying a C-4 charge and batteries and possibly a timer.Two French special forces soldiers were also seriously injured in the explosion, said France’s presidential spokesman, Stephane Le Foll on Wednesday.The United States says militants use several different variations of improvised and modified drones that are relatively low-tech. They are the type used by cameramen and amateur hobbyists around the world.Some of them are even available on Amazon.Recently released videos show drones being used in combat: a drone belonging to Jund al-Aqsa, an al-Qaida affiliate landed on a Syrian military barracks in one such video, and in another, a Hezbollah drone targets Nusra Front near Aleppo.Dorrian says the U.S. has been taking the drone threat seriously.Some are concerned about the long-term implications of weaponized drones. Just like with IED’s in Iraq and Afghanistan, as the devices become more and more complex, the threat to civilized life becomes even greater.Some are concerned that drones could be used in peaceful cities for terror attacks."You already see things happening in Ukraine, gangs in Mexico are using drones, and in Ireland, gangs there are using surveillance," said Wim Zwijnenburg, a security and disarmament policy adviser at Netherlands-based PAX for Peace. "Add a small amount of explosives to a small drone, and even the psychological factor is pretty significant."

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