Without question, drones have become the U.S. weapon of choice in the fight against terrorism. Counterterrorism officials say they've come to rely on the pilotless aircraft for their surveillance capability and what officials say is precision targeting. That reliance has led to greater use in the past couple of years, especially in Pakistan and Yemen.
John Bellinger, a State Department legal adviser during the George W. Bush administration, says there are increasing concerns about the frequency of drone attacks.
A RQ-4A Global Hawk, an unmanned aerial vehicle, has crashed near Salisbury, Maryland.
NPR's Larry Abramson reports the Navy says the drone was on a test flight out of Patuxtent Naval Air Station, when it crashed in a remote, swampy area. No injuries nor property damage have been reported.
The drone was one of five acquired "by the Navy for surveillance and intelligence use," Larry tells our Newscast unit.
The man described as al-Qaida's "leading propagandist" and the No. 2 leader in that terrorist organization was killed by a U.S. drone strike in Pakistan on Monday, NPR, CNN and The Associated Press say they've been told by "a U.S. official."
That word came around 1:40 p.m. ET.
Our original post. Reports: Drone Strike Targeted Al-Qaida's 'Leading Propagandist'
The president's counterterrorism chief, John Brennan, made another statement yesterday. He argued that drone strikes to kill militants are legal.
DAVID GREENE, HOST:
Brennan's remarks were unusual. It's rare that the administration mentions drones at all. Yesterday, Brennan chose to say that the missile strikes by unmanned aircraft which take place in countries like Yemen and Pakistan fit within international law.