THE BLOG
02/07/2013 06:50 pm ET | Updated Apr 09, 2013

Do You Feel Safer Knowing That The Government Has Drones?

We asked readers that question today, and got a wide range of responses.

I've included some of those answers in my article on how Americans feel about drone war.

Although data on this new form of warfare is still hard to come by, the polls that I did manage to find suggest that Americans generally think drones are a good thing... but it's complicated. We express less support when asked to consider the possibility that innocent civilians could die in drone attacks, for example. And we seem pretty opposed to the idea of the government using drones to kill American citizens, even when those citizens are also terrorists.

As a corollary to the debate, my colleague David Wood raises an interesting point in an excellent piece today. He interviews American military veterans who say they think that the obsession with drone technology is beside the point.

If government officials can order the killing of American citizens without due process, what does it matter if they use drones or troops?

"We can do this with our people, or we can do it with our technology," said a military veteran named Robert Scales. "This is the fundamental take-away of the new American way of war, and it shocks me that no one is talking about it."