Summary: Learning To Live With Drones

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In the world today, there are countless advances in technology that cause the public to reevaluate what is ethical. Unmanned weapons systems introduce an entirely new set of ethical standards in combat and force us to reexamine if and how they should be used. In Avery Plaw and Joao Franco Reis’ article, Learning to Live with Drones: Answering Jeremy Waldron and the Neutralist Critique, the authors set out to respond to Waldron’s claims that drone strikes are unethical based on neutralism. In Marcus Schulzke’s article, Rethinking Military Virtue Ethics in an Age of Unmanned Weapons, the author argues that drones can improve morality in combat. Both of these articles aim to establish the ethical justification for the use of drones and the authors have each cited over 30 sources from books, scholarly …show more content…
However, when it comes to how civilians and combatants are defined, Waldron believes that al-Qaeda operational commanders should not be considered combatants while the authors disagree (Plaw and Reis, 2015). Waldron also expresses concerns that because of indiscriminate targeting, drones pose an unnecessary threat to civilians and our government is not transparent about this. Plaw and Reis quickly dispel this and cite numerous cases that prove the government has worked to be very open about drone strikes, regularly briefing congressional representatives on drone strikes (Plaw and Reis, 2015). According to an article in the San Diego Union Tribune, drone strikes not only save the lives of countless American Soldiers, but also actually reduce the number of civilian casualties that would otherwise occur (Weiner and Sherman, 2014). Plaw and Reis agree with Waldron that more should be done to ensure oversight of drones, but affirm that instead of limiting their use, we should encourage drones be used

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