Our organization supports the ending of all wars and all war preparations. We’re in favor of recognizing the ban on war that exists in the United Nations Charter (with very narrow exceptions virtually never met) and the ban on war found in the Kellogg-Briand Pact.
But banning particular weapons and tactics can contribute to the reduction and abolition of war when done right. We believe that, as with banning land mines and cluster bombs and nuclear weapons, a ban on armed and surveillance drones can contribute to the movement for peace.
We need to de-normalize and re-stigmatize drone murder for those aware of it, and awaken and inform those unaware.
In no possible sense should we legitimize bombing people from personed airplanes, or sanction launching missiles from ships or the ground. Rather, we should recognize the enormous temptation for xenophobic bigots that lies in drones. When murderous actions can be ordered without directly risking a single life from among the people who matter, bodies start to pile up quickly.
In no way is the problem simply that drones may soon be firing missiles without any human being pushing a button. The human being’s touching of the button is not magical; it does not make murder righteous. But autonomous weapons are a further temptation for armchair murderers who wish to avoid awareness of responsibility for their actions. We believe the strongest approach is the one being taken by Ban Killer Drones, namely the banning of all armed drones, autonomous or otherwise.
Drone weapons are proliferating rapidly and are now used on both sides of some wars. There is no one on earth made safer; everyone on earth is put at risk.
Treaties that rogue nations have refused to ratify have nonetheless altered their conduct. On the model of banning land mines and cluster bombs, we should ban killer flying robots without further delay. If dozens of nations can advance nuclear disarmament with a new treaty, they can advance the promise of a drone-free sky by the same means.