Reuters blog archive

from The Great Debate:

Drone coalition: Key to U.S. security


The Pentagon’s biggest, most high-tech spy drone aircraft — one of the hottest items on the international arms market — is the key to a burgeoning robotic alliance among the United States, Japan, South Korea and Australia.

The RQ-4 Global Hawk, a $215 million, airliner-size Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) built by Northrop Grumman, could help this four-nation coalition monitor both China, as it increasingly flexes its military muscles, and North Korea, as it develops ever more sophisticated nuclear weapons.

If, and when, Canberra, Tokyo and Seoul acquire their Global Hawks — all three sales negotiations are still at an early stage — they could all share intelligence with Washington and vice versa. For all would be using the same hardware and software system. The resulting network could monitor millions of square miles of land and sea around the clock and in real time.

The U.S. Defense Security Cooperation Agency, which oversees arms transfers, clearly sees this shared system as an asset. “The proposed sale of the RQ-4,” the agency stated when the South Korean deal was announced in December, “will maintain adequate intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities and will ensure the alliance is able to monitor and deter regional threats.”

from Photographers' Blog:

High-impact, high-altitude


By Pascal Lauener

Covering the big annual air show of the Swiss Air Force on the Axalp in the Bernese Oberland starts with me checking the weather radar for the next day, hoping for a big blue sky.


As a photographer you know there will be great pictures full of action, because you are at the same altitude where the fighter jets pass you at full speed. This is a very rare situation.

from Pakistan: Now or Never?:

Brinkmanship in South Asia


Pakistan said two Indian Air Force planes violated Pakistani airspace on Saturday, one along the Line of Control in  Kashmir and the other near Lahore  in Pakistan proper. Pakistani officials said Pakistani jets on patrol chased the Indians away and that the Indian Air Force, upon being contacted later, told them it had happened accidentally.

  The Indian Air Force, though, has told the media that none of its planes had violated Pakistani airspace.  There has been no official response from the Indian government.

from Oddly Enough Blog:

You’re SURE this is the air force?

I'm embarrassed for these guys. The photo captions say they are in the Air Force, and are displaying their "skills."


But here's a tip. If you find yourself slithering along the dusty ground with a bayonet on the end of your rifle, you may have joined the WRONG Air Force! There's a chance you got drunk and signed up for that other branch, Dudes Who Crawl Along With Bayonets Until They are Strafed by the Air Force.