WASHINGTON - Drone technology is spreading rapidly. As many as 50 countries are developing or purchasing these systems including China, Russia, India, Pakistan and Iran, a reports in the CNN claims. It said the development of drone weapons raises profound moral questions about the future of war. US officials are fond of drone weapons because they are inexpensive and seem to make the waging of war less costly. They allow leaders to conduct military operations without risking the lives of US soldiers or drawing public disapproval. They give the false impression that war can be waged with fewer costs and risks. The network claimed that even non-state actors are involved. Hezbollah reportedly has deployed an Iranian-designed drone. Iran is developing a new drone aircraft with a range of more than 600 miles. These systems are used mostly for surveillance, but it is not difficult to equip the aircraft with missiles and bombs. Recently in Massachusetts, a man was arrested for plotting to place explosives on a drone aircraft and fly it into the Pentagon or the Capitol building. Private contractors are getting into the business as well. We now have companies offering drones-for-hire. Many important legal questions have been raised about drone strikes. The US government arguably has legal authority to conduct military operations in Afghanistan, based on the original congressional authorization adopted after 9/11. It is questionable, however, whether this authority extends to Pakistan, a country that is supposedly an ally of the US. Nor do we have legal authority to launch military strikes in Yemen, Somalia and other countries where the US is not officially engaged in armed hostilities.