Making War Easy

Andrew Sullivan —  Oct 24 2011 @ 6:43pm

David Cortwright calls for a time-out on drone warfare: 

[Drones] allow leaders to conduct military operations without risking the lives of U.S. soldiers or drawing public disapproval. They give the false impression that war can be waged with fewer costs and risks. Any development that makes war appear to be easier or cheaper is dangerous and morally troubling. It lowers the political threshold of war. It threatens to weaken the moral presumption against the use of armed force. 

The use of drone aircraft perpetuates the illusion that military force is an effective means of countering terrorism and resolving political differences. … Terrorism is essentially a political phenomenon. It cannot be defeated by military means. The RAND Corporation's 2008 report"How Terrorist Groups End"shows that the most effective tools against violent extremism are political processes and police operations.

David Friedman extends Cortwright's argument.