Take that Amazon for trying to protect your drones; nothing goes past the eyes of the US Army’s vigilant eyes. Who needs a drone gun when you can fire down store-bought quadcopters using a $3 million Patriot surface-to-air missile!
Gen. David G. Perkins, the commander of the US Army Training and Doctrine Command, boasted about the prudence and efficacy of the US Army,
“That quadcopter that cost 200 bucks from Amazon.com did not stand a chance against a Patriot,”
Perkins also added that missile wasn’t fired by the US, but by an ally “dealing with an adversary,” and said it wasn’t a test but a response to a real threat.
“Now, that worked, they got it, OK, and we love Patriot missiles,” the general said.
At least Perkins had some semblance of the massive overkill, and commented on the logic of using a $3 million missile to shoot down a small drone,
“I’m not sure that’s a good economic exchange ratio,” he told an audience at the Association of the United States Army’s Global Force symposium in Alabama. In fact, if I’m the enemy, I’m thinking, ‘Hey, I’m just gonna get on eBay and buy as many of these $300 quadcopters as I can and expend all the Patriot missiles out there’.”
Patriot missiles are radar-guided missiles that are capable of shooting down other missiles and other small, fast-moving targets like drones. The missiles travel at five times the sonic limit, while an Amazon quadcopter drone typically can fly at no more than 50mph (80km/h).
You can see Perkins’ briefing below, with the relevant section starting at about 14 minutes.
The missile wasn’t fired by the US, but by someone Perkins described as an ally “dealing with an adversary,”
It wasn’t an “Amazon drone.” It was a DJI Phantom, which you can buy at any electronics retailer, including Wal-Mart, Target and yes, Amazon. But it wasn’t an Amazon drone. And they cost a heck of a lot more than $200. But the real question is, why is a multimillion-dollar anti aircraft missile paid for by U.S. tax payers being used to shoot down a drone that can be brought down with a BB gun?