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This image released by the Department of Defense shows the obverse view with ribbon of the newly announced Distinguished Warfare Medal. The Pentagon is creating the new medal that can be awarded to troops who have a direct impact on combat operations but do it from afar. The medal will be awarded to individuals for “extraordinary achievement” related to a military operation.(Photo: AP)

The Pentagon is creating a new high-level military medal that will recognize drone pilots and, in a controversial twist, giving it added clout by placing it above some traditional combat valor medals in the military’s “order of precedence.”

The Distinguished Warfare Medal will be awarded to pilots of unmanned aircraft, offensive cyber war experts or others who are directly involved in combat operations but who are not physically in theater and facing the physical risks that warfare historically entails.

The new medal will rank just below the Distinguished Flying Cross. It will have precedence over — and be worn on the uniform above — the Bronze Star with Valor device, a medal awarded to troops for specific heroic acts performed under fire in combat.

Source: Andrew Tilghman for Military Times via USA Today

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