Security by remote control – can it work?

Reaper flying over desert

Reaper – Wikipedia Commons

British Pugwash AGM 2014

20th March 2014

Professor Paul Rogers, Professor of Peace Studies at Bradford University, traces moves towards ‘remote’ forms of warfare and warns that they will bring new dangers. He examines not only the use of armed drones, but takes a wider perspective which also covers the expansion of special forces and private military companies.

He traces the attempts of western powers, especially the US, to move to a ‘war light’ strategy which, in reducing ‘boots on the ground’ lessens military casualties and the cost of sending military forces overseas. He argues that this strategy essentially failed in Iraq and Afghanistan and increased the attractiveness of ‘remote control’ options. He concludes that we are moving into a new area of proliferation with consequences that are difficult to predict, with little hard information available. These ‘remote’ options also raise a variety of legal issues.

READ a summary (pdf) or LISTEN to Prof. Rogers’ talk: