Dear Internet: Has someone written this piece on drones?

I need to read a news article that asks: are drones logical as a replacement for troops, are they really cost-effective and (how) do they work as both deterrents and killing tools. The problem with everything I’ve read, on all sides of the issue, is that they’re filled with emotion and innuendo, name-calling and drama.

What I want is a data-driven article that examines the assumptions the military is making that drone warfare is cheaper and more effective than ground warfare. It should also look at the effects drones have on people – economical, sociological, psychological – in targeted areas vs. the effects of ground combat. It would be nice if this article also touched on drone-based warfare in the broader context of technological disruption.

The problem I have with the articles I’ve read so far is that they don’t seem grounded in reality. Drone opponents largely ignore the fact that we’re a society that tolerates some violence and death in exchange for security and that, broadly speaking, air power is probably the best asymmetric deterrent the US has right now. Drone proponents tend to overstate the “surgical” nature of strikes, ignoring the side effects of reigning terror down from the sky on populations and to dismiss the fact that the permanent, global war on terror has been extremely inefficient, only partially successful and has dangerously altered civil rights in this country.

Has someone written this article? If so, link me. If not, someone get on that. I’ve had enough demagoguery from everyone.

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