The Washington Post had an interesting article about the use of drones in warfare. My snap judgement comment is twofold. First that all war is evil and that we need to figure out other more peaceful ways of resolving conflict. The second is that until we do so, any way we can save lives in the process is something that we should certainly explore.
The increased use of drones has indeed been successful according to the WP:
With a year to go in President Obama’s first term, his administration can point to undeniable results: Osama bin Laden is dead, the core al-Qaeda network is near defeat, and members of its regional affiliates scan the sky for metallic glints.
Those results, delivered with unprecedented precision from aircraft that put no American pilots at risk, may help explain why the drone campaign has never attracted as much scrutiny as the detention or interrogation programs of the George W. Bush era. Although human rights advocates and others are increasingly critical of the drone program, the level of public debate remains muted.
But what of the psychological issues that arrive for those who are dropping bombs on faceless people? What harm does that cause? Also how ELSE might drones be used in the future is a subject that is unavoidable. Could drone technology be furthered to develop all kinds of horrible uses for it?
Dianne Feinstein notes:
“Whenever this is used, particularly in a lethal manner, there ought to be careful oversight, and that ought to be by civilians,” Feinstein said. “What we have is a very unique battlefield weapon. You can’t stop the technology from improving, so you better start thinking about how you monitor it.”
Indeed. While drones save many lives, they probably also cause irreparable psychological harm to many soldiers as well and the moral slope has a deep decline. Still, until we come up with more peaceful solutions, does the President have another choice?