Academic journal article Air & Space Power Journal

Predators: The CIA's Drone War on Al Qaeda

Academic journal article Air & Space Power Journal

Predators: The CIA's Drone War on Al Qaeda

Article excerpt

Predators: The CIA's Drone War on al Qaeda by Brian Glyn Williams. Potomac Books (http://www.potomacbooksinc.com), 22841 Quicksilver Drive, Dulles, Virginia 20166, 2013, 256 pages, $23.96 (hardcover), ISBN 978-1-61234-617-5.

With Predators, historian Brian Williams adds an important study to the ongoing debateover the United States' drone policy. This thoroughly researched history focuses primarily on the development and employment of the RQ-1 Predator and MQ-9 Reaper, particularly in Pakistan. The work manages to remain balanced, providing a fair, sensible, and insightful look into this controversial topic.

The author's research is meticulous and thoroughly documented. Williams read and addressed dozens of reports by authors of various nationalities involved with or interested in drone strikes from 2001 to 2012. Consequently, Predators speaks from multiple perspectives, from America's insistence on the importance and precision of drones, to the concerns of Pakistani civilians, to the claims of Taliban officials. Williams's research helps support his overall claim that although drones have caused considerable collateral damage, those incidents are isolated, and these platforms have proven exceptional in their ability to hunt and engage their targets. …

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