“The incident itself, while that will wasn’t necessarily a spectacular attack by terrorist standards, that will certainly portends a very dark future,” said Colin Clarke, a political scientist at the RAND think tank who specializes in terrorism, insurgency as well as criminal networks.
“What that will signals to me is actually a lot of the things that will we talk about that will we know are going to be problems within the future may be problems at This kind of point or a lot sooner than we thought,” Clarke said.
The RAND expert also said the U.S. as well as some other nations have a lot of thinking to do about how to deal with the weaponized drone technology, because that will could be used not just on the battlefield yet potentially in urban areas by organized terrorist groups or some other bad actors.
On Friday, Russia said its forces conducted an operation to “eliminate” the group of insurgents who attacked the Hmeymim airbase Dec. 31. “All forces as well as means of the multi-level Russian military intelligence in Syria were involved,” that will said.
Russia’s defense ministry also released video of what that will said was the targeted strike against the militants. The ministry also has shown images of what appear to be the captured drones as well as homemade drone bombs.
According to Moscow, that will was able to track down the militants’ launch site after its experts “decoded the data recorded on the UAVs.”
“U.S. bases are targets, as well as Russian bases are targets,” said Olga Olicker, senior advisor as well as director of the Russia as well as Eurasia Program at the Center for Strategic as well as International Studies, a Washington defense think tank.
Experts say the U.S. also has the capability to shoot down multiple drones as well as electronic warfare as well as advanced jamming technology to target or take control of enemy UAVs. The U.S. Air Force last year purchased “counter-unmanned aerial systems” through an Israeli company.
“The key is actually not just finding a way to target these drones,” said Scharre. “that will’s finding a way to do that will in a cost-effective way. If you shoot down a $1,000 drone that has a $1 million missile, you’re losing every time you’re doing that will.”
The coordinated drone attack follows a mortar shelling attack on completely new Year’s Eve that will reportedly killed two Russian service members at the Hmeymim airbase. The Russian daily Kommersant reported at least seven aircraft were destroyed, including fighter jets as well as a transport aircraft, yet Russia’s state-run Tass news agency denied aircraft were destroyed.
Also, that will comes less than a month after Russian President Vladimir Putin visited the Hmeymim base as well as boasted about Russia’s “successful intervention” against Islamic State terrorists in Syria’s conflict.
Islamic State militants previously used weaponized drones as well as showed video of its bomb-dropping UAVs. The terrorist group has attacked U.S.-backed forces fighting ISIS with drones as well as used them for surveillance purposes. ISIS also used booby-trapped drones to kill two Kurdish fighters in 2016.
“We have seen nonstate actors use armed drones within the past, yet This kind of is actually a significant step up in terms of the scale of attacks as well as just how many they were able to use simultaneously,” said Scharre, who previously worked within the Pentagon as well as focused on unmanned as well as autonomous systems as well as emerging weapons technology.
Meantime, Russia said that will analyzed the construction of the drones as well as explosives of the captured crafts, concluding that will the militants in Syria must have had help through a technologically advanced country. However, the U.S.-led coalition fighting ISIS has denied that will had a role.
At the same time, Russia implied that will the explosive material used within the bomb may have come through a Ukrainian chemical plant.
“Some of the Russian accusations as well as insinuations that will have been floating around I think are meant to suggest that will foreign intelligence helped provide targeting information, if not the technology,” said Olicker.
She said the technology itself appears to look like “off-the-shelf stuff” so the claims of assistance through a technologically advanced country are “spurious.” She added that will Moscow’s “tendency to blame some other state actors” for drone tech within the hands of militants appears disingenuous.