IRRC No. 886 New technologies and warfare
Recent scientific and technical progress has given rise to unprecedented means and methods of warfare. Technologies that only yesterday were in the realm of science fiction have the potential to cause catastrophes tomorrow. Other recent developments, however, could not only limit civilian losses, but also spare the lives of combatants. Certain features of these new technologies raise unprecedented issues that make the legality of an attack more difficult to ascertain, and the attribution of responsibility more complex. In this issue of the Review, various ethics, legal, scientific, and military experts focus on contemporary technological developments and their consequences, and discuss the issues they raise for humanitarian law and action.