Discussion: war & violence in the 21st century

Thoughtfully reflect on the issues discussed in the talks that you viewed. Address the following points in your discussion:

  • What is the speaker’s point of view about the topic? Is the speaker biased?
  • What ethical issues and ethical reasoning are argued?
  • Do you think that the use of drone technology has moral and ethical implications? Why or why not?
  • Do you agree with the speaker’s point of view? Be specific and thorough. Express how and why you agree or disagree and discuss how ethics and values contribute to your opinion. Consider the theoretical concepts discussed in the course. Do not just state your viewpoint, rather provide relevant details to support your findings and/or position.

View one or more of the following YouTube TED Talk videos about violence and war:

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Important Note

 All video descriptions are derived from the owner of the related YouTube channel.

War and Peace in the 21st Century – The Stories in Our Minds (16:06) (Links to an external site.) – In this TEDx Talk, historian Daniele Ganser argues that most wars seem to be resource wars, whether in the past or the present. We should be careful, however, not to fall for everything we are presented with.

Extreme Ownership (13:49) (Links to an external site.) – War is a brutal teacher. In this talk, Jocko Willink explains from personal experience how war teaches you the most when things go wrong. Jocko asserts that when a team takes ownership of its problems, the problems get solved.

Micro Drones Killer Arms Robots – Autonomous Artificial Intelligence – Warning !! (7:47) (Links to an external site.) – A Warning: It’s hard to believe how far we’ve come. We launched just a few years ago with our surveillance drones, and in this short amount of time, we’ve retooled cutting-edge artificial intelligence and machine learning techniques, such as deep learning and convolution neural networks, into hardware systems that governments and peace-keeping agencies can use to keep their troops safe.

The Edge of Drone Warfare | James Rogers | TEDxOdense (13:08) (Links to an external site.) – James Rogers focuses his attention on the future of conflict, and how drones are being used maliciously by terrorist groups and non-state organizations for assassinations, surveillance, missile drops, spying, and to disrupt vulnerable domestic targets.

Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl’s Platoon Members Speak Out – Part One (19:12) (Links to an external site.) – In this video, platoon members are interviewed by Fox News about the case of U.S. Army soldier Bowe Bergdahl.

The Pros and Cons of Drone Warfare (2:54) (Links to an external site.) – This video addresses ethical concerns about drone warfare.

Deadly Detachment | Brandon Bryant | TEDxTrondheim (12:03) (Links to an external site.) – With the use of drone technology, Brandon Bryant’s unit was involved in the deaths of more than 1,600 people. Bryant began to feel uneasy about his work and in 2011, he decided to make a career change. In this video, Bryant speaks out about his experience to show that the role of operators in war is more than just a video and often involves innocent victims.

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