Everybody the world over knows that drones are the next big thing militarily, so it probably seemed like a safe bet when German Defense Minister Thomas de Maiziere signed off on investments in the “Euro Hawk” drone. That’s just the sort of thing a DM, especially one who’s been tapped as the next Chancellor, would do.
Five years and €600 million later, de Maiziere’s ministry, as well as his political future look to be in serious jeopardy because the Euro Hawk is ridiculously unsafe, even by the standards of robotic planes that routinely careen out of the sky. The opposition has called the investment a waste “to an unimaginable degree” after it was revealed that the EU had announced the thing was so unsafe that they couldn’t legally fly it in European airspace.
De Maiziere’s problem goes even deeper, because apparently his reaction to learning about this potential embarrassment was to order all data on the Euro Hawk “classified” and then order the German Army’s testing complex to destroy all the files detailing the failure.