first published on February 20, 2018 by Funker
What started as a movement to give photographers access to insane aerial shots has since transformed into something far more sinister. While in a first world location, the lawnmower like buzzing noise of a drone usually indicates that a photographer is in the area, or a hobbyist is getting ready for his next drone race, in the Middle East and Africa, it means something far more evil is happening. There, it means that someone is watching you. Someone who most likely has the intent and means to kill you at any second. There, that lawnmower like buzzing you hear coming from the skies above you is a clear indicator that something very bad is about to happen.
Terror organizations like Jabhat al-Nusra and the Islamic State have been heavily weaponizing drones over the past few years. Drones have been used to drop small explosive payloads directly onto targets of opportunity, and they have also been used as command and control devices during coordinated attacks. Most recently however, we have been seeing the drones used for what any trained forward observer in a professional military would have been tasking drone teams with from the beginning. Correcting artillery and mortar barrages with extreme precision, and achieving second round effects on targets in the open.
The video above is a 30 minute live feed we conducted on Facebook discussing the impacts of commercial drones on the battlefield. On top of the opinions of the author of this article, it also contains the thoughts and opinions of members within the Funker530 community. In that video, we show footage from commercial drones that have been weaponized to deliver explosive payloads, and clips of the Islamic State using drones to coordinate a complex attack against the Iraqi Army. If you like the format of that video, and would enjoy interacting with members of the Funker530 staff and community, make sure you pay attention to the Funker530 – Combat Footage Facebook page every Thursday morning so you can catch the episodes as they go live. If you want advanced warning of when those live feeds are happening, you can join the community Discord server at this link.
In the video below, we have members of HTS using commercial drones to conduct intense indirect fire operations against the Syrian Arab Army. It is insanely effective, and it removes the need for putting highly trained, mostly irreplaceable forward observers into vulnerable positions where they can be killed or captured very easily. If systems like this had been readily available during the earliest stages of the Global War on Terror, coalition casualties surely would have mounted much faster. Insurgent groups would have been able to quickly and accurately make adjustments to their primitive indirect fire weapon systems, and launch extremely devastating IDF attacks. The time to find an answer for the commercial drone problem on the modern battlefield is now, while it’s not our troops paying for the lessons in blood.