War in a whole new light

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War in a whole new light

Post  The one and only Gerson on Mon Aug 24, 2009 3:47 pm

What are the consequences of the changes that technology is making to how we wage and view war? Those who fight now have to deal with whole new circumstances that they are not trained how to deal with, and most don't receive as extensive training. Plus now the public can see war in a whole new light.
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When war loses its horror, is it just another video game?

Post  The one and only Gerson on Mon Aug 24, 2009 4:12 pm

Not even related directly to robotics, but our increased ability to capture episodes on war seems to soften the horrors of war. One can just go online to youtube and watch clips of people getting blown to smithereens, played to music like, "I believe I can fly." And this elicits laughs... war used to cause despair and anger, and now it causes laughter. To add to this, soldiers can go from their homes to fighting electronically across the world and back to their homes in a single day. No longer are families torn apart through the terrors of war. And when a husband or father or son comes back and says, work was fine, and nothing seems amiss, it now seems that war has truly become less horrible. And yet, forced to try and live normal lives, soldiers who make commutes like this often have a higher rate of PTSD, because there is no "system" for them to deal with what they see and do, no interaction with only soldiers who have been through the same things, no hospitals who have seen this same problem hundreds of time and know how to identify and deal with it. Combine this with the fact that operating unmanned crafts from far away requires different skills than the military used to demand, so younger fighters who are used to videogaming and multitasking are suddenly more appealing, and thrust straight into more important roles with less time to train and learn to deal with the difficulties of war. But while some can't deal with this and can thus have a mental breakdown, to others, they just don't have a real sense of what is going on, it really does feel like they are playing a virtual game. They feel no sorrow at killing their enemies, its fun and exciting. Is that how we want war, killing, to be viewed? How can we stop these effects, stop war from losing its horror for many, and yet becoming more horrible as it overcomes those are forced to deal with it in new ways and aren't prepared? And if we don't, well... lets just figure out a way around this.
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