The American Foreign Policy Council (AFPC) is dedicated to advancing the prosperity and security of the United States. AFPC’s Defense Technology Program launched the Strategic Primer initiative to inform Congressional staffers (and the general public) about technologies that affect U.S. national security. The Primers provide balanced representations of the potential benefits and limitations of a particular technology, its history and uses, and potential threats posed by its use by America’s adversaries.
Remotely Piloted Aircrafts (RPAs, or drones) are playing an increasingly important role in modern warfare, and performing a growing nunmber of surveillance and reconnaissance missions at home and abroad. This Primer describe how the United States, as well as our allies and our enemies, are using drones, discusses challenges posed by RPAs, and offers recommendations for future defense planning.