Drones and the Future of Armed Conflict

Edited by David Cortright, Rachel Fairhurst and Kristen Wall

University of Chicago Press, 2015

Presenting a robust conversation among leading scholars in the areas of international legal standards, counterterrorism strategy, humanitarian law, and the ethics of force, Drones and the Future of Armed Conflict takes account of current American drone campaigns and the developing legal, ethical, and strategic implications of this new way of warfare. 

Among the contributions to this volume are a thorough examination of the American government’s legal justifications for the targeting of enemies using drones, an analysis of American drone campaigns’ notable successes and failures, and a discussion of the linked issues of human rights, freedom of information, and government accountability.

About David Cortright »


“While the peak of drone usage may have passed, we will be evaluating and reevaluating the legality, justice, and utility of the drone war for decades. Cortright, Fairhurst, and Wall provide an important contribution to the broader discussion on drone warfare. Readers with an interest in political affairs and the use of force will find this book fascinating, and those studying international relations and international law will also find much to like."
— Robert M. Farley, University of Kentucky 

“Drones and the Future of Armed Conflict is a welcome addition to the growing literature on drone warfare, bringing together specialists on strategy, human rights, ethics, and law to discuss the implications of drone use for each of these areas. In particular, Cortright and Fairhurst make a forceful and convincing case for why drones or a militarized strategy more generally should not be central to our counterterrorism policy.”
— Sarah Kreps, Cornell University