The U.S. Military Can Now Shoot Drones It Sees as a Threat


The military can disable, destroy, and track any drone that approaches their airspace, according to new information released by the Pentagon.

Captain Jeff Davis of the US Navy told Military Times recently that the classified new policy, written in July, was distributed to 133 military bases.

Military bases “retain the right of self-defense when it comes to UAVs or drones operating over [them],” Davis told Military Times. “The new guidance does afford the ability to take action to stop these threats that includes disabling, destroying, and tracking.”

Basically, flying your drone near a military base will now prompt an armed response, and may end with your drone being shot out of the sky and U.S. forces knocking on your front door.

But air space regulation is a fickle thing. As this interactive map shows, restrictions on drone flight are subject to frequent and rapid change, and often limited to specific heights. The military leases land for underground facilities that fall under the new drone policy, but it’s not clear who owns that airspace, and the farmers who own the land may use drones to survey and monitor their livestock and crops.

Every squiggle and orange circle marks restricted airspace, each of which comes with its own set of rules.


According to Davis, the military response to a nearby drone “will depend on the specific circumstances,” but as of yet the military has not issued a statement on whether airspace rules for these leased facilities will change.

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