Considering the reports of Boko Haram burning 86 people alive, many of them children, in a village called Dalori this week, Nigeria’s first confirmed use of a drone against the terrorist group only feels like appropriate retribution.
Of course, another country joining the age of 21st century warfare and shooting missiles remotely from the skies may have its downsides. But Boko Haram has been courting such a strike for some time. This one seems to have been against a logistics center in Garin Moloma.
The United States government apparently disagrees, because the drone Nigeria fired against the insurgent group likely came from China. The U.S. and its allies have proven resistant to expanding the club of Western drone fighters, though at least 66 other nations are eligible to purchase them under a 2012 policy.
While America may be the country best known for its drone fighting, China has long since developed capable unmanned aerial vehicles capable of carrying and firing missiles. According to Al Jazeera, in addition to Nigeria, China has sold its drones to Pakistan, Egypt, and the United Arab Emirates, and is in talks with Saudi Arabia and Algeria.
The complete list of countries that are known to have used armed drones in warfare now consists of: the United States, United Kingdom, Israel, Pakistan, Iraq and Nigeria.