Kenneth Anderson gives his argument for the use of drone warfare.
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Kenneth Anderson begins by saying his first task in the human rights business was directing the landmines campaign back in 1990. Landmines are very indiscriminate weapons and he campaigned to military weapon designers to come up with more discriminating weapons. At the time the most accurate weapon in the American military was a tomahawk cruise missile whose pinpoint capabilities were being able to blow up a whole building. Compared to these levels of accuracy Kenneth says that we should be thanking military designers for making weapons with better targeting capabilities.
Drones are different from other systems in that they provide a longer loiter time but in regards to just pressing a button and destroying a village, that view is too simplistic as decisions go through many layers of authority before the choice is made.
He argues the point that drones make it too easy to use force is null and void as the amount of force used depends on the justice of the cause that ones fighting. He concludes by saying we should look at the broader picture of how weapons have evolved in accuracy of the last 20 years rather than the way they are operated today.
Filmed on Thursday 25th April 2013
MOTION: THIS HOUSE BELIEVES DRONE WARFARE IS ETHICAL AND EFFECTIVE
ABOUT KENNETH ANDERSON:
Kenneth Anderson is a law professor at Washington College of Law, American University, a research fellow of the Hoover Institution at Stanford University, a Non-Resident Visiting Fellow at the Brookings Institution, and a blogger. Anderson was the legal editor of Crimes of War, a book about international humanitarian law (W.W. Norton, 1999). He is a member of the International Council of the New York-based Human Rights Foundation.
ABOUT THE OXFORD UNION SOCIETY:
The Union is the world’s most prestigious debating society, with an unparalleled reputation for bringing international guests and speakers to Oxford. It has been established for 189 years, aiming to promote debate and discussion not just in Oxford University, but across the globe.