Last night marked the 70th anniversary of the Dambusters raid. The loss of life - 617 squadron lost 53 airmen on the raid - was high, but as well as the effects on German industry the morale boost given to the British public was hugely important, and to this day Guy Gibson and his flyers remain an iconic reminder of the courage and tenacity of RAF Bomber Command. Canadian and Australian airmen were also lost on the operation, and we should never forget the contribution that they and other Commonwealth flyers made to RAF operations during WW2. We should also acknowledge the fact the 53 young men who were lost on that raid, and the rest of the 55,573 Bomber Command crewmen who were lost during the war, were the finest our country had. We lost the best of the best - 44% of those who served in Bomber Command lost their lives - and we have paid the price ever since as a result.
Fast forward to 2013.
USS George H.W. Bush.
The X-47B is rather large, as drones go, and will eventually have full combat capabilities.
I'm rather fond of drones. I would rather see our future combat aircraft controlled by young men in bunkers in England, then flying over hostile territory with crewmen onboard.
At the moment, RAF drones have only surveillance roles, but I hope that this situation changes quickly. Unfortunately, due to the incompetence of the Eton Rifles, our new carriers will lack catapults, and so will not be able to launch the X-47B.
I am aware of certain British politicians who are campaigning against the use of drones, particularly 'killer' drones. Their opposition has nothing to do with their personal religious beliefs, of course, nor their anti-Americanism.
I just wish that we had drones in Northern Ireland during the 'troubles'!