Video: Civilian UAV Films Polish Riots From Above

The video below showing a civilian operated drone chopper filming riots in Warsaw, Poland last Friday is a great example of the democratization of what was until very recently, military-grade tech. This is a straight up ISR drone that’s flying high above the streets of a major city taking camera footage that was once the exclusive domain of high-priced news choppers and government helos.

This reminds me of a post I wrote at sister site DoDBuzz last year where experts — speaking anonymously to encourage open and honest debate — an Army conference on the future of warfare warned of the rise of civil UAVs and ever-shrinking ISR gear that could be used by non-state actors:

The first technology approach would be the use by terrorist groups of new forms of airborne attack. Except this time they would use model aircraft as “a homemade cruise missile” or even building a model sailplane out of plastic or composites with a pound or two of explosives and something to serve as shrapnel,” the presenter said. Such a craft could evade radar and penetrate no fly zones to hit specified targets such as “the next presidential inauguration,” he said. “Let’s call this a homemade cruise missile,” he added.

Yup, I seem to recall someone trying to bring prediction to life earlier this year in Massachusetts.

I’ve heard other experts warn of militant groups like Hezbollah using ever-shrinking high-res video cameras mounted on civilian prop planes flying close to Lebanon’s southern border to spy on targets inside Israel.

Heck, the little robo-copter shown above was used by the Libyan rebels to spy on Gadhafi’s forces during the Libyan civil war — the rebels needed minimal training to operate the drones.

  • Black Owl

    The thought of putting a stable, accurate gun on that UAV gives me the chills. It has a perfect view of everyone and is hard to spot.

  • Musson1

    Was that a rocket coming out of the crowd?

    It left a vapor trail.

    • MCQknight

      I think that was a tear-gas canister being fired.

  • Jazzism

    I think look at it further out like a block or 2 away. Lots of kit planes of prop, jet or rocket. Make yourself a model kamikaze Ki-15 Karigane with a camera and stuff. That’s what the big heads are scared of I think.

  • Morty

    Even if a small UAV could carry a small pistol It would be extreamly dangerous assanation attempts would be a lot more common

  • MCQknight

    Any word on what specific platform this was? I want one!

  • In the first part it looks like a Molotov cocktail was thrown at the Police and toward the end some one fires a tear Gas round.

    • Chrobry

      The long building on the left where the Molotov fires were burning is the building housing the capital garrison of the Polish Army honor guard.

  • QuiAudetAdipiscitur

    Popular Science has a good article on a similar platform/idea…
    http://www.popsci.com/diy/article/2011-10/you-bui

  • Lance

    Good eye in the sky for cops.

  • Must for cities worldwide IE over US cities for Occupy Wall St movement alone.
    Or oversee Rose Parade in Pasadena CA Jan 1.

  • Many of the rockets the Palestinians fire into Israel are not that much removed from hoby rockets.

  • WJS

    So why are they rioting in Poland?

    • Rafal

      left wing vs right wing separated by police … in the end both sides attacked police :)

  • Martix

    I’m from warsaw I have seen many videos from these events and heard many eyewitnesses on the Internet and TV and I can say that there were no riots in Warsaw. There were some hooligans provocations and in many opinions the aggressive acting of the police (which instead of protecting taking part in the Independence March people and their set route they pushed off them ad blocked them) and decisions of Warsaw authorities accepting some opposite demonstrations in the same place caused thiese hooligans acts.
    Here you can watch the police actions : http://vod.gazetapolska.pl/694-wojna-polsko-tuska

    and here the real Independent March which was blocked by leftist http://vod.gazetapolska.pl/677-czesc-i-chwala-boh

  • anonymous

    the picture of the droid not is the correct, see this link…

    http://wtemaciemaci.salon24.pl/365300,gratulacje-dla-firmy-robokopter

  • nobodysaysBOO

    the new and improved hunter killer drones will hunt and kill other drones automaticly just like in the robot wars on tv,when we all can rent one for a day and control it from the tv to do revenge hunts ect! what a great world, buy drone stock! Can they bring down jet airplaines like a bird strike? Can we make one that catches a drone midair like a hawk and brings it home?

  • Nick Dwyer

    Siri attack that blue car!

  • Martix

    This video you wont see in Polish or foreign mainstream media. Do you think that these people are nazis or fascists as they are called by extreme leftists. Because of them German hit squads arrived to Poland invited by some Polish leftist circles to disterb celebrating Polish Independence day. Why no madia havn’t shown the real Independence March but shown only provocations and some hooligans. To accuse these people of starting brawls in the streets and to forbid the Independent march in the future? No comment.
    http://vod.gazetapolska.pl/710-idzie-polska-dlacz

  • bilwill

    Of course governments will outlaw these private Ariel drones

  • Mike

    Well done. I would experiment with a parabola or tube around the microphone to get the prop noise down and acquire useful sound from what is being filmed.

  • Reality Bites

    The media outlets don’t need drones, they are just mouthpieces of the government.

    The free people of the world need the drones to protect themselves from the government psychopaths.

  • rob

    The video shown was from a simple “toy” helicopter with a digicam, not an ISR drone. Simple tech cleverly used.