Lucka 11: Changing weapons changing war
With the introduction and increased use of unmanned aerial combat vehicles war has changed. USA is one of the countries who uses these “drones” most. In recent years USA increased the use of drones significally, when Obama came to power the number of attacks have multiplied. Sweden uses drones for reconnaissance missions but the EU has plans on developing and using drones for combat purposes. The new EU drone Neuron, which Sweden and Saab had a big part in developing, had its first test flight on the 1st of December this year.
By: Petter Holmgren
One of the most used motivations to use drones is that it decreases the loss of soldiers in war. However, drones are also used in zones where there is no current war which makes the legitimization problematic. There are a series of problems that has to be considered with the increased usage of drones. Since it is used in zones where there is no war the drones could become a tool of oppression which the general population is very scared of. USA considers the whole world to be a battleground on the war on terrorism and Al-Qaeda. That is another aspect that has to be considered. The drones violate countries’ independence and borders as they operate independent of borders. Less powerful countries, like Pakistan, are forced to accept this even though they don’t like it.
The drones can hit almost anywhere and without people knowing why and when. What targets the drones will hit is a secret. There is no insight on how the decision on who is considered a threat and needs to be eliminated is made. There is also the less technical aspect of the psyche of the soldier. The soldier is not in combat anymore and is therefore very distant from the killings. This makes the reality and missions more like a “game” were the enemy is not seen as humans. Of course this is normal military practice where you try to distance yourself from your enemy. Using drones is however the next step.
The dehumanization of the targets leads to casualties not being taken seriously and numerous civilian casualties have been reported but ignored by the killers. Since there are no soldiers in field, it is very hard to control after the strike if the targets were innocent people or real “terrorists”. This also makes the civilian population very upset and aggressive towards the killers, and thus more likely to join opposing forces.
There is no real consequence for the killers. And what kind of human is it, that doesn’t have to take consequence for her actions? Especially when it comes to killing, the consequences and reflection after is very important. The drone just proceeds to the next target and the casualties are ignored by the attackers.