Breath-Taking Progress

What you see here is the notion that without humans in combat, there’s less risk involved, therefore there is stronger public support for the usage of UAVs in war, and war itself. Such might be the current situation in America today, as it’s waging 74+ wars, both declared and undeclared. If there’s no human intervention (i.e. drone strikes) or a small teams of special ops are being used, it’s not thought of as a war.

BERLIN (Own report) – The German Council on Foreign Relations (DGAP) is propagating in favor of the deployment of combat drones. The influential think tank, headquartered in Berlin, has published an opinion poll indicating that more than two-thirds of the German population are in favor of using Unmanned Combat Aerial Vehicles or UCAVs in warfare. The results of this poll can be found in the current edition of “Internationale Politik,” the journal published by the DGAP. The journal extensively treats the subject – with an unambiguous tenor: UCAV development is characterized as an “enormous technological leap” that the German armed forces cannot evade. The authors consider the construction of combat drones, which, based on artificial intelligence can quasi “autonomously” carry out killer functions without human intervention, to be a “logical consequence.” The PR campaign, launched by the DGAP, accords with the German government’s intention to increase the reliance on UCAVs in future wars.

Change of Mood

As indicated by the German Council on Foreign Relations (DGAP), more than two thirds of the German population is in favor of using combat drones. The think tank, headquartered in Berlin, is referring to the results of the opinion poll, it had commissioned from the “Forsa” public opinion research institute. According to this poll, 59 percent of the respondents were – “under certain conditions” – in favor of using Unmanned Combat Aerial Vehicles (UCAVs) in warfare – for example to “ward off an imminent threat.” Another 12 percent were in favor of a “general clearance” for UCAVs, with only 27 percent demanding that they be “categorically” forbidden.[1] The results of this opinion poll are in stark contrast to results of two other recently published demoscopic investigations. For example, the “Stern” magazine polled 61 percent of the German population strictly disapproving of the procurement of UCAVs for the German military.[2] The public opinion research institute “Infratest dimap” polled, under contract from the ARD public service television broadcaster, a similar result with two thirds of the respondents being against the German armed forces being provided UCAVs.[3] The DGAP has now produced a poll claiming the exact opposite. Media organs are speaking of a “change of mood on the controversial topic of combat drones.”[4]

With No Personal Risk

An Israeli general – whose anonymity was apparently assured by the editorial board of “Internationale Politik”, since he remains unnamed – openly propagates using drones. In his article, the officer, first of all, emphasizes that unmanned systems “provide a greater degree of efficiency in reconnaissance than ever before.” He sees another “great advantage” in the remote control of the UCAVs, making it possible for the so-called operator to kill people, and destroy vehicles or buildings without personal risk: “A situation, where someone, perhaps in cooperation with his commanders, makes a decision, sitting in a protected room with access to a comparably panoramic perception of the area and the target, is without a doubt, a more advantageous situation than that of a soldier who has to decide on the battlefield.”[8]

Ethically Sound

Statements of this nature correspond to the German government’s declared intention to procure combat drones for the German military. Already at the end of January, the German Minister of Defense, Thomas de Maizière (CDU) had declared before the German Bundestag that he considers the use of UCAVs to be “ethically sound” and their procurement “to be reasonable in terms of security policy, alliance policy and technology.”[9] Just recently it was made known that the US Congress had approved the sale of 3 “MQ-9 Reaper” combat drones to Germany. These UCAVs, equipped with “Hellfire” missiles, are responsible for a large number of civilians being killed in the regions along the Afghan-Pakistani border.

Full article: Breath-Taking Progress (German Foreign Policy)

One response to “Breath-Taking Progress

  1. The folks operating the drones are already starting to show signs of burnout. Looks like you can only kill so many by remote control before the humanity of the operator is affected.