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JOINT BASE LANGLEY-EUSTIS, Va. (AP) — The Pentagon is planning to increase its use of drones by about 50 percent over the next several years, using the Army and civilian contractors to put more of the unmanned aircraft in the air, in part to help counter escalating aggression from Russia and China.

The move comes as senior Air Force leaders are capping their daily drone flights at 60 because of stress on the force. But that number that doesn't come close to meeting the demands of top military commanders facing growing security threats around the world.

Top military leaders have named Russia as the nation's most serious security threat. And China's rising military power and island building program in the South China Sea have increased tensions and prompted more demand for U.S. surveillance across the Pacific.

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asked Oct 7 by NiamhSladen (110 points)
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