May 11, 2015

China’s (Not So Scary) Drone Army

Featuring Kelley Sayler, and Paul Scharre

Source: Breaking Defense

Journalist Sydney Freedberg

How many drones is Beijing building? Relying on unidentified “estimates,” the Pentagon’s latest Chinese Military Power report says “China plans to produce upwards of 41,800 land- and sea-based unmanned systems, worth about $10.5 billion, between 2014 and 2023,” including armed and stealthy unmanned aircraft. (More on the report here). That sentence gave rise to at least one story about China’s robotic “army.” But all drones are not created equal, experts from the tech-savvy Center for a New American Security reminded me this afternoon.

“It’s not like the sky is falling, but it would suggest a future where China will have better situational awareness over its surrounding regions,” said Paul Scharre, director of the future-looking 20YY Warfare Initiative at CNAS.

Read the full article at Breaking Defense.


  • Kelley Sayler

    Former Fellow, Defense Strategies and Assessments Program

    Kelley Sayler is a former Fellow at the Center for a New American Security (CNAS), where she worked with the Defense Strategies and Assessments Program and the Future of Warfa...

  • Paul Scharre

    Vice President and Director of Studies

    Paul Scharre is the Vice President and Director of Studies at CNAS. He is the award-winning author of Four Battlegrounds: Power in the Age of Artificial Intelligence. His firs...