The Use Of Drones For Offensive Purposes Should Be Prohibited

The modern theory of just war is the main source of political debate and decision-making on war and peace in the West. The theory is a further development of the General idea of a normative limited war. The theory has become relevant because of the use of unmanned aerial vehicles by various States for military purposes. In particular, the United States (USA) has resorted to the use of unmanned aerial vehicles to attack rebel groups. The problem with the use of unmanned aerial vehicles is that they can be used both to protect civilians from the invader, from the terrorist threat, and Vice versa, they can be used by terrorists to capture and destroy military facilities and cities. Based on the foundations of international humanitarian law, such practices should be prohibited. Drones are planes that don't have human pilots on Board, and so are often referred to as “unmanned combat aircraft. ” Initially, they were used only for observation. Russian special services used unmanned aerial vehicles for reconnaissance purposes. Military experts consider the famous scientist and inventor Nikola Tesla to be the ancestor of unmanned aerial vehicles.

In 1899, he demonstrated a miniature radio-controlled ship at an exhibition in Madison Square garden. This invention served as a powerful impetus for scientists from other countries. During the First World War, German designers were developing remote-controlled gliders. They were launched from the ground and could carry a bomb load. In 1915, the Germans tested a radio-controlled bomber, called the 'Bat'. This aircraft could carry a load of up to 100 kilograms, and its radius of action reached 200 kilometers. At the right time, the man pressed the button, and the bombs were dropped on the enemy positions.

Not sitting idly by and American designers. In 1916, by order of the Ministry of air and sea forces of the United States, the inventor of the gyrocompass Elmer Sperry developed an 'Automatic airplane', which he called a 'Flying bomb'. The estimated bomb load of the project was 450 kilograms. Their development and led the British. London Professor Archibald Lowe invented a remote-controlled missile. However, before the application of the above projects in real combat conditions, it never came — which, however, did not stop the designers in search of innovative solutions. In 1936, a naval officer from Florida, Delmar farney, who led the project of radio-controlled aircraft of the US Navy, in his report for the first time used the word 'drone', later entrenched as an alternative to the term 'unmanned aerial vehicle'. Farney led the development of aircraft torpedoes and gave a lot of effort to the introduction of television equipment for remote control of aircraft. In 1930-ies and in the USSR was developed 'special purpose glider', which could carry a torpedo and launched from a bomber. During the Second World War, on the direct instructions of Hitler, scientists have developed missiles that were used by the Nazis for bombing.

To strike at the German missile factories, the Americans converted the b-17 bombers into 'flying bombs' capable of carrying dozens of tons of explosives. The pilot lifted such a device into the air, pointed it at the target, turned on the radio control system, and then jumped with a parachute. The efficiency of this project was very low, so the Pentagon soon curtailed development.

For the first time the mass use of drones was recorded during the operation 'desert Storm' initiated by the Americans against Iraq. This was facilitated by the rapid development of aerospace navigation, and primarily the global positioning system (GPS). Combat drones were used by the US-led coalition to scout and attack Iraqi positions. According to official data, the coalition drones made more than 500 sorties, and their total combat RAID was almost 2 thousand hours. Drones were actively used to direct strategic bombers, fighters and deck artillery of ships placed in the Persian Gulf to the positions of Iraqis. The effective action of these means of attack largely predetermined the defeat of the Iraqi army, which led to a massive influx of former Iraqi officers, who were out of business, into the ranks of terrorist groups.

By 2001, the United States began arming these devices with missiles to fight terrorists in Afghanistan. Since then, more than eighty countries, including the US, Russia, Pakistan, India, Iran, China and Israel, have expanded the use of vehicles for reasons of warfare and surveillance. The US used unmanned vehicles in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Yemen and Iraq. The Russian military used the device in military operations in Syria. But, as the developers of drones did not hide the technology of their production, terrorist groups were able to create a similar device for the purpose of using them for military purposes. Today we know a huge number of cases of use of drones by terrorists for military purposes. In particular, militants Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) practical the use of drones.

The steady decline in the number of ISIL fighters with almost exhausted personnel reserve forces them to resort to more economical expenditure of human resources. Therefore, one of the ways to constantly keep the enemy in tension for ISIL is the massive use of unmanned aerial vehicles. Being relatively inexpensive devices, unmanned vehicles after a small technical adjustment are converted into combat-ready devices that allow you to drop explosive devices. Dennis M. in the book 'Gormley. Hedging Against the Cruise Missile Threat,' mentions examples of the use of militants ISIL drones. He claims that the militants acquire two types of drones, aircraft and helicopter type, and the share of helicopter-type devices significantly exceeds the number of aircraft devices. Paradoxically, the losses that ISIL has suffered in recent years have only increased the purchasing power of terrorists.

'Financial Council' ISIL, aware of the need to preserve the combat capability of militant groups and the importance of propaganda releases, does not hesitate to increase the cost of drones, costing from 100 to 250 dollars apiece, which are purchased by fractional parties and imported through Turkey to Syria and Iraq. Michael Gips. A in the book 'Remote Threat' provides data on certification and special verification of purchases of unmanned vehicles. He also focuses the reader's attention on the fact that terrorist groups, refusing certification, are able to purchase devices at a lower price. Now ISIL uses drones in two versions: reconnaissance-shock and propaganda. Initially, when ISIL controlled large areas, priority was given to the reconnaissance option, built on the use of aircraft-type devices that can stay in the air for more than an hour and operate at a distance of up to 100 km, flying around the territory on a given route.

But over time, the militants abandoned this type of device, replacing them with a helicopter type of unmanned vehicles aimed at destroying enemy facilities. The events of 11 September 2001 showed that it is necessary to be prepared to deal with any, including high-tech threats. The problem of non-proliferation of unmanned missiles, as well as the fight against them, after the events became the subject of close attention of the Congress, the Ministry of defense and other state bodies of the United States [4]. In 2009, the Rand Corporation noted that 'terrorists consider the use of drones as one of the possible ways to attack along with other options. '

The terrorist threat posed by the use of ISIL is a real threat to the world. As the analysis shows, the potential threat in the hands of terrorists may be drones weighing up to 100 kg, capable of carrying a combat load of up to several tens of kilograms. This class should include, first of all, commercially available unmanned civilian vehicles. However, the probability of their use is small due to the fact that their number is small, and the use is only episodic. Like any theory, the theory of just war presupposes a systematic explanation of peace and a normative solution to the complex problems of war and peace. At present, it is this theory that dominates and dominates the issues of war and peace in the West.

Speaking of unmanned vehicles used for military purposes, it is worth citing the following information:

2016. 05. 02 Queen UK has banned the flights of drones over the estate Sandringham. This is a direct consequence of properly assessing the risks of terrorist threats associated with the use of devices.

2016. 01. 14 the British assessed the risks of terrorist attacks using drones

2015. 07. 24 Islamic state Militants says they plan to use copters for terrorist attacks in the UK. It is told about plans of using 'toy' drones for bombings of crowds of people.

2015. 04 In Japan, a drone loaded with a tank of radioactive sand from Fukushima landed on the roof of the Prime Minister's office in Tokyo. The radiation level 'packages' was 1 micros Evert per hour.

2011. 09 In the United States arrested 26-year-old citizen, who had planned to use radio-controlled model airplanes loaded with explosives to attack the Pentagon and the Capitol. As detonators of improvised explosive devices, he intended to use cell phones.

Currently, the us Department of defense allocates the following characteristics that allow to classify a particular aircraft as unmanned: the absence of a pilot on Board; remote control of the operator by radio or other communication channel; the possibility of programming to perform a specific. In accordance with the principles of customary international law, Article 51 of the UN Charter limits the use of force exclusively to the use of drones for military purposes. At present, anti-terrorist and other special operations are carried out in violation of state borders and against the will of the state in which a military or other special operation is carried out with the assistance of another state. Such actions, in the opinion of the International court of justice, are contrary to customary international law.

Modern wars are mostly asymmetric wars. This means that opponents are usually not comparable in their military, economic and political capabilities. Obviously, the weaker side always compensates for the lack of military and other capabilities at the expense of the desire for terror. Compliance with the rules and regulations of just war, which the theory of just war insists on, can only mean that the weaker party actually admits defeat. The rules of war are a luxury that only the strong can afford. But even the strong in modern conditions, as a rule, follows these standards not for moral reasons, but because it is profitable.

This is beneficial for the following reasons:

  1. In order to create an appropriate ideological background;
  2. In order to attract additional allies;
  3. In order to ensure the sympathy of the local population;
  4. In order to maintain a favorable moral atmosphere in own army.

To this end, the international community needs to review the legal acts relating to the conduct of hostilities and the use of unmanned aerial vehicles. The main task to be solved by the state bodies is to fill the legal vacuum existing in the field of unmanned vehicles. At the same time, it is important that the imposed restrictions and rules for the acquisition and use of these funds do not prove to be a hindering factor for the widespread introduction of devices where it is economically justified. In the context of the above, many companies engaged in the development and sale of commercial unmanned vehicles, have made in the hardware and software logic of their products the possibility of remote shutdown and installation of zones of restriction of their use.

However, the issue of legal regulation of the use of unmanned vehicles is not resolved. It is clear that the use of such weapons systems must be assessed both from the perspective of international humanitarian law and from the perspective of international human rights law, since the use of Autonomous weapons systems violates the right to life, remedies or the principles of human dignity. </p>

10 October 2020
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