2013-02-13 / Local & State

Military Weighs Cutbacks In Drone Programs

By Lolita C. Baldor

ASSOCIATED PRESS

LANGLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Va. (AP) – The Pentagon for the first time is considering scaling back the massive buildup of drones it has overseen in the past few years. It would be both to save money and to adapt to changing security threats and new areas of operation – such as east Asia – where drones are more likely to be detected and shot down.

If the Pentagon does slow the huge building and deployment program, it won't affect CIA drone strikes in Pakistan, Yemen and elsewhere against terror suspects.

Air Force leaders are saying the military may already have enough unmanned aircraft systems to wage the wars of the future – and the current number may be more than the service can afford to maintain.

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