Regarding U.S. defense planning, as Chinese military analysts remind us, Americans too often operate on the basis that technology drives strategy, not the reverse. The Manhattan Project that developed nuclear weapons, the antiballistic missile Strategic Defense Initiative, and stealth aircraft are prominent examples. And, so far, the same observation could apply to unmanned vehicles operating in all domains.
The use of unmanned vehicles dates to World Wars I and II. Pilotless aircraft were employed in both, and German V-1 and V-2 rockets were quite effective and destructive. Japan dispatched unmanned balloons to strike the U.S. West Coast. One started a small forest fire. But that was the extent of the damage.