Jeh Johnson to Lead Homeland Security

By Dan Gettinger In a ceremony at the White House today, Jeh Johnson was chosen by President Obama to lead the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). He is replacing Janet Napolitano, who is leaving to become president of the University…

Interview: The Aerial Anarchist

Raphael “Trappy” Pirker is the founder and front man of Team Black Sheep, a group of hobbyist drone pilots who have gained global renown, and infamy, for their aerial videos of landscapes and cityscapes from Rio de Janeiro to New…

Weekly Roundup 9/14

If you would like to receive the Roundup in your inbox, please subscribe below.  News Pakistani education activist Malala Yousafzai urged President Obama to end drone strikes in the northwestern territories of her country. After her meeting at the White…

Book Review: Out of the Mountains

By Dan Gettinger A solitary drone flies over a far away mountain valley in Afghanistan operated by a pilot thousands of miles away on a distant base in the Mojave desert. The drone is the icon of remote-controlled warfare. In…

Plato and Drones

In September, Bard Classics professor Thomas Bartscherer delivered a lecture about drones and Plato’s Republic. Here are the notes.   I. Background reading 1) Virgil, Aeneid, Book III (excerpt) 2) Apollonius Rhodius’s Argonautica, Book II (excerpt) 3) http://livingunderdrones.org/victim-stories/ 4) Conor…

Bard and West Point Debate on Drones

On September 12, Bard and West Point students, cadets and faculty engaged in a public debate at Bard College. The resolution was: drones do more good than harm. The affirmative and negative sides were comprised of a mix of Bard…

Weekly Roundup 9/30

If you would like to receive the Roundup in your inbox, please subscribe below.  News According to a new report, the Justice Department has spent nearly $5 million on drones for a number of federal agencies and police departments since…

The Rise of the Drone Lobby

By Arthur Holland Michel On September 24, Bloomberg News reported that in the past year the defence contractor Northrop Grumman has greatly increased its lobbying spending to fight proposed cuts to the military’s Global Hawk drones, which Grumman makes. Grumman…

The Possessed Fighter Jet

By Arthur Holland Michel In the public imagination, military drones shoot at things. But in fact, throughout their history, drones have much more often served to be shot at. This week, Boeing released a video of its latest drone project:…