Sunday, April 21, 2024
HomeGlobal Perspective & Critical ResearchThe Psychological Tolls and Moral Hazards of Drone Warfare

The Psychological Tolls and Moral Hazards of Drone Warfare

Author: Murtaza Hussain

Affiliation: The Intercept

Organization/Publisher: The Intercept

Date/Place: October 24, 2021.

Type of Literature: Book Reviews

Word Count: 2645


Keywords: Drone Warfare, Surveillance, Violence


Drones have become a cornerstone in US military strategy, with mounting consequences as this style of warfare spreads globally. Wayne Phelps and Neil Renic engage with the topic in their recent works, both with differing focus. Phelps argues that operators may develop a sense of closeness with targets out of the long hours of surveillance, making drone strikes less impersonal and unlike video gaming. Operators are psychologically distressed, finding it difficult when it is time to pull the trigger. Phelps is concerned with how to make drone warfare less distressing, wanting to minimize operators ’emotional and moral instability. On the other hand, Renic considers drone usage as a “Radical Asymmetry” of violence, as operators don’t undergo the reciprocal risks of combat. The lack of mutual risk and mainly targeting non-threatening targets shows drone warfare as not really a war but executions; and when strikes are not as precise they devolve into nihilistic “Killing for the Sake of Killing”. Drone warfare breeds further animosity and further burdens local populations, and the zero accountability for the many fallen civilians adds to its destructiveness.

By: Omar Fili, CIGA Research Assistant



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

- Advertisment -
Google search engine

Most Popular