John Kaag, professor of philosophy at UMass Lowell, published an essay in the online edition of the NY Times on March 17. His topic is the use of drones in warfare. Read the essay here.
To be sure, the question of what new responsibilities soldiers have is not the only, nor even the most important, ethical question concerning the use of drones. Hannah Arendt claimed, in her analysis of World War II, that “in general, the degree of responsibility increases as we draw further away from the man who uses the fatal instrument with his own hands.” Just as was the case in the invasion of Iraq 10 years ago, the most important questions we should be asking should not be directed to armchair soldiers but to those of us in armchairs at home: What wars are being fought in our name? On what grounds are they being fought?