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Technology and the 21st Century Battlefield

Recomplicating Moral Life for the Statesman and the Soldier



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Technology and the 21st Century Battlefield: Recomplicating Moral Life for the Statesman and the Soldier by Charles Dunlap, Jr
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Earlier in this century, George Orwell, in his novel, 1984, offered a vision of the world where the logical might be illogical, right could be wrong, and 2 plus 2 might equal 5. Now that we are beyond 1984 and at the end of the century, humanity faces a future where a millennium of norms established by custom and law may be altered by the implementation of new technologies. As in the Orwellian world of 1984, what seems to be may not be, and what was intended for good could become bad. In this monograph, Air Force Colonel Charles Dunlap starts from the traditional American notion that technology might offer a way to decrease the horror and suffering of warfare. He points out that historically this assumption is flawed in that past technological advances, from gunpowder weapons to bombers, have only made warfare more -not less- bloody. With a relentless logic, Colonel Dunlap takes to task those who say that the Revolution in Military Affairs has the potential to make war less bloody. He covers the technological landscape from precision-guided munitions and Information Warfare to the use of space for military operations to raise issues that could pose difficult ethical, legal and moral problems for statesmen and soldiers. Some of these conundrums are so confounding that the author could claim that in all humility his only purpose was to raise these issues to prompt debate. But Colonel Dunlap takes the next step to outline several broad thematic avenues that may help us all address the difficult problems that lie ahead. The issues are important and what follows in this monograph invites discourse. I am sure Colonel Dunlap joins me in welcoming you to that discussion. Let me urge you toindulge yourself in Technology and the 21st Century Battlefield. LARRY M. WORTZEL Colonel, U.S. Army Director, Strategic Studies Institute
Release date NZ
October 1st, 2004
Country of Publication
United States
University Press of the Pacific
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