Recently, the air force chief of staff gave a speech at Langley air force base and asked for fighter pilots in the audience to raise their hands. Most people in the audience raised their hands. The general told the fighter pilots to start looking for other jobs as they were soon to be replaced by the new combat UAVs (Unpiloted Air Vehicles) the air force was developing. Although technology has been available for several decades to build such unpiloted aircraft, senior air force commanders have blocked development. But now the technology is so cheap and reliable that there is a fear that less wealthy nations wishing to challenge American air supremacy might actually build a fleet of effective combat UAVs. China is a likely candidate for this kind of effort. So the United States Air Force is moving forward on robotic warplanes.