Now, I am all about recognizing a job well done. These guys do perform a vital service to the Troops on the ground. My point is, these Drone operators are doing their jobs Stateside, and they get to go home to their families after their duty day. They are not the Troops on the ground. Hell, I was in Afghanistan in a support role, (read: Fobbit) getting rocketed damn near every day for a year and the highest personal award on my rack is an ARCOM.
I personally know Airmen who went outside the wire in Afghanistan who didn't get as high an award. This is an insult to them and every Soldier, Sailor, Airman, Marine and Coast Guardsman (yes, I saw them there, too) who served physically in the sandbox. It's an insult to the one legged veteran with a Bronze Star and a Purple Heart who stepped on an IED on patrol. If they are going to have a medal (and they do deserve something for their efforts, which save the lives of and assist the troops on the ground considerably, it's not for nothing the Infantry calls those Drones Angels.) It should, IMNSHO, rank below an Air Force Aerial Achievement Medal (since chances are that Enlisted Airman actually served on an actual airplane in Theater).
With apologies to OldNFO and American Mercenary, it makes me wonder if Officers have any brains. You know they're the ones who thought of this.