Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

The secret development of CCTV UAVs or drones represents yet another example of Administrative Lawlessness now evident the world over as civil liberties are squandered.

All we have of freedom, all we use or know –
this our fathers bought for us long and long ago.

– Rudyard Kipling, The Old Issue

A recent Guardian newspaper article (‘CCTV in the sky: police plan to use military-style spy drones’, 23rd January 2010[1]) reveals plans to use surveillance drones/Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) to spy on UK citizens. The project, called the South Coast Partnership, sees arms manufacturer BAE Systems teaming up with a “consortium of government agencies led by Kent police”.

The Guardian report states that:

Police in the UK are planning to use unmanned spy drones, controversially deployed in Afghanistan, for the ­”routine” monitoring of antisocial motorists, ­protesters, agricultural thieves and fly-tippers, in a significant expansion of covert state surveillance.

The Home Office’s ‘Science and Innovation Strategy 2009–12’ [2], published last year, confirms that the UK government has been exploring the use of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) as a policing “tool”…