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Unmanned vehicles' advantage spurs arms race

(China Youth Daily)

17:06, November 07, 2011

Edited and translated by People's Daily Online

Beijing, Nov.7 (People's Daily Online) -- Currently, more than 30 countries are developing and manufacturing more than 150 types of unmanned aerial vehicles, with the United States and Israel taking the lead in this area.

By 2009, the United States had already spent more than 3.2 billion U.S. dollars developing nearly 60 types of unmanned aerial vehicles, with the Predator and Global Hawk being two particularly well-known models.

Israel is the second most advanced and experienced country in the research and development of unmanned aerial vehicles. Israel initiated an unmanned aerial vehicles program in the 1970s according to its national conditions and has since developed several series of popular unmanned aerial vehicles. At present, it owns more than 20 models of unmanned aerial vehicles, including the Sparrow, Scout, Skylark, Heron, and Seeker, which are a force to be reckoned with.

Russia, unwilling to lag behind in this area, has developed the BAS-62, Tu-300, Hummingbird and Honeybee reconnaissance systems as well as certain unmanned jet-propelled aircraft and light unmanned reconnaissance aircraft.

Other countries such as the United Kingdom, Italy, Germany, India and Japan are also stepping up the research and development of unmanned aerial vehicles.

It could be said that the worldwide arms race in terms of unmanned aerial vehicles has started. Why have military powers in the world prioritized this technology?

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