Seeds: Unmanned combat aerial vehicles, more commonly referred to as military drones, have been used by the United States military since the First Gulf War. The first documented “kill” by an American drone was in October of 2001. By 2015, over 4,000 people (900 of whom were civilians without affiliation to a terrorist organizations) have died from airstrikes conducted by these drones, primarily in Pakistan, Yemen, Libya, Iraq, and Afghanistan.
Core: Within the last few months, Navy officials have said that the United States is going to expand their use of drone warfare. They intend to use self-driving boats in everything from surveillance to defense. This type of warfare is appealing to many because it means that no American soldiers’ lives have to be put in immediate danger, decreasing the number of necessary “boots on the ground.” However, others argue that it trivializes war to something similar to a video game and devalues civilian life.
Skin: The debate over drones has only become more heated within the past few years, as media outlets such as The Intercept published works called the Drone Papers, which are supposed to expose how the government decides which areas and people to target.
Leaves: It doesn’t seem like the United States will stop using military drones anytime soon, despite some argument. The latest Gallup poll suggested that 65% of Americans approved of overseas drone strikes on suspected terrorists.
Food for Thought: Do you think the U.S. should continue its usage of drone warfare? Do you think that Americans value American lives over those of other countries’ civilians? Tell us what you think.
Think we missed something? Tell us in the comments.