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The Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts have pushed the U.S. Air Force to bolster its unmanned aircraft fleet and activities to a massive extent. But what happens once those conflicts draw down or end? Things will change, but not the emphasis on remotely piloted aircraft, USAF chief of staff, Gen. Norton A. Schwartz, declared at the Dubai Air Chiefs conference. Large numbers of systems will be sustained.However, how operators are trained will change. Now, because of pressures, much of that is done in a combat setting. A more regular training process will be established once that luxury exists. Moreover, he says, the service will then be able to meet demands for unmanned aircraft in other areas that cannot be met now because assets are involved in combat missions.
ar99, Dubai11, AfPak, unmanned
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