In previous posts I’ve referred to the militarisation of relatively cheap civilian drones by a number of armed groups participating in the Syrian civil war, notably the Lebanese-based Jihad Council (the guerrilla wing of Hezbollah). Beginning with reconnaissance or surveillance duties some of these UAVs have now morphed into improvised weapons’ platforms, dropping small bombs – mortar rounds or light artillery shells – onto enemy targets (albeit more to inflict panic than casualties; for the time being). Here is an example posted to YouTube in early September by Jund al-Aqsa, a small body of mainly non-local Arab fighters loosely allied to the larger Jabhat Fateh al-Sham (previously known as the al-Nusra Front). The video recording shows the faction attacking positions held by the pro-Assad Syrian Arab Army in the contested Hama Governorate, though the munitions seem to have functioned poorly. This suggests more of a live-fire test or propaganda effort to raise its profile. With Saudi and Qatari petrodollars fuelling the conflict gaining the attention or favour of the bored Gulf potentates seems to be more important than achieving temporary advantages on the ground.