One of the most significant and controversial developments in contemporary warfare is the use of unmanned aerial vehicles, commonly referred to as drones. In the last decade, US drone strikes have more than doubled and their deployment is transforming the way wars are fought across the globe. But how did drones claim such an important role in modern military planning? And how are they changing military strategy and the ethics of war and peace? What standards might effectively limit their use? Should there even be a limit?
Drone warfare is the first book to engage fully with the political, legal, and ethical dimensions of UAVs. In it, political scientist Sarah Kreps and philosopher John Kaag discuss the extraordinary expansion of drone programs from the Cold War to the present day and their so-called ï¿1⁄2effectivenessï¿1⁄2 in conflict zones. Analysing the political implications of drone technology for foreign and domestic policy as well as public opinion, the authors go on to examine the strategic position of the United States - by far the worldï¿1⁄2s most prolific employer of drones - to argue that US military supremacy could be used to enshrine a new set of international agreements and treaties aimed at controlling the use of UAVs in the future.
John Kaag is a dispirited young philosopher at sea in his marriage and his career when he stumbles upon West Wind, a ruin of an estate in the hinterlands of New Hampshire that belonged to the eminent Harvard philosopher William Ernest Hocking. Hocking was one of the last true giants of American philosophy and a direct intellectual descendent of William James, the father of American philosophy and psychology, with whom Kaag feels a deep kinship. It is James’s question “Is life worth living?” that guides this remarkable book.
The books Kaag discovers in the Hocking library are crawling with insects and full of mold. But he resolves to restore them, as he immediately recognizes their importance. Not only does the library at West Wind contain handwritten notes from Whitman and inscriptions from Frost, but there are startlingly rare first editions of Hobbes, Descartes, and Kant. As Kaag begins to catalog and read through these priceless volumes, he embarks on a thrilling journey that leads him to the life-affirming tenets of American philosophy—self-reliance, pragmatism, and transcendence—and to a brilliant young Kantian who joins him in the restoration of the Hocking books.
Part intellectual history, part memoir, American Philosophy is ultimately about love, freedom, and the role that wisdom can play in turning one’s life around.