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The U.S. Army will add reconnaissance teams — including unmanned aerial vehicles and Comanche helicopters — to its aviation field, officials announced recently.

Speaking at the U.S. Army Aviation Symposium early this month in Virginia, Lt. Gen. Johnny Riggs, director of the Objective Task Force, said the units will be equipped and ready in 2010, according to an Army news release.

The aviation detachment was added to the Units of Action, roughly a brigade-sized, joint-service unit that can be deployed against any threat level, in any environment, according to Army officials. The aviation detachment will include 12 Comanche helicopters and eight UAVs that will conduct reconnaissance, provide support and engage and destroy when necessary, Riggs was quoted as saying in the release.

Citing Lt. Gen. Benjamin Griffin, G-8 deputy chief of staff, the release stated that the UAVs will do everything from surveillance to attack to re-supply.

“Technology has an impact on how we shape the force,” Riggs said in the release. “Technology itself is not the solution, but it provides you the menu for the solution. … I’m proud to say that we have a phenomenal amount of money to go toward research, development and acquisition — $28.5 billion. But the soldier is really the integral part of the formation.”


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