Russian arms manufacturer Kalashnikov, best known for having conquered the world with the iconic AK-47, now launches a kamikaze drone, which could well mean the “democratization” of warfare with drone technology, such as the AK-47 Kalashnikov did for assault rifles.
The Kalashnikov Group presented their latest gadget this week at the arms fair in Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates: a drone with a width of about 50 inches, which can fly 30 minutes at a speed of 100 miles per hour and can carry about 3 kilos of explosives on board.
The drone, officially called KUB-UAV, is the equivalent of “a small, slow and presumably affordable cruise missile.”
The price is what makes the drone bomb special. An anonymous employee at Kalashnikov, who was not allowed to speak to the press, did not want to say exactly how much he would cost but confirmed the suspicion that it would be “very cheap”. In that respect, a parallel can be drawn with their iconic Kalashnikov.
Professor Nicholas Grossman, who teaches international relations at the University of Illinois (and authored the book ‘Drones and Terrorism’) believes it is a very worrying trend: “I think of it as democratizing smart bombs.”
“It means disseminating smart bombs more widely. This would shrink the gap between the most advanced militaries and the smaller ones.”