New Book Edited by Columbia Law School Professor Sarah Knuckey Explores Drone Strike Debates
Contact: Human Rights Institute, Greta Moseson; 212.854.3138; [email protected]
New York, February 16, 2015 – Columbia Law School Professor Sarah Knuckey is the editor of a new book that examines the legal, ethical, and strategic issues around the use of drone strikes and targeted killings.
The book, Drones and Targeted Killings: Ethics, Law, and Politics, introduces readers to one of the most contentious and fiercely debated issues in U.S. counter-terrorism practice. It was designed for readers who are new to the issues and who are seeking to understand the various sides of the complex debate.
An introductory essay by Knuckey breaks down the elements of the debate, and disentangles the range of arguments presented for and against U.S. practice and policy. It also clarifies the concerns related to the use of drones as a new weapon and those related to the use of targeted killing as a tactic. The book provides a foundation in the legal, ethical, and effectiveness dilemmas, as well as in issues related to government transparency and accountability for killing.
Drones and Targeted Killings brings together the diverse perspectives of government officials, journalists, lawyers, philosophers, U.N. officials, human rights NGOs, security experts, and civilians impacted by drone strikes. The anthology includes readings from those who have defended as well as critiqued current U.S. practices, and includes a selection of key readings sourced from officials’ speeches, congressional testimony, news accounts and op eds, scholarly articles, drone strike investigations, policy reports, and legal briefs.
Columbia Law School students Bassam Khawaja ’15 and Surya Gopalan ’15 LL.M., as well as Human Rights Institute intern Sebastian Bates provided research assistance for the book.
Drones and Targeted Killings builds on Knuckey’s expertise in the areas of international law, the use of lethal force, and new weapon technologies. Knuckey is the Lieff Cabraser Associate Clinical Professor of Law, director of the Human Rights Clinic, and faculty co-director of the Human Rights Institute at Columbia Law School. She is also a Special Advisor to the UN Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial executions. Prior to joining Columbia Law School in 2014, she taught at NYU School of Law and directed the Project on Extrajudicial Executions at the Center for Human Rights and Global Justice. She is also a founding editor of the national security blog Just Security.
Drones and Targeted Killings: Ethics, Law, and Politics is the final text in the Open Society Foundations’ National Security and Human Rights Campaign series, which includes Securing Liberty (David Cole, editor), Privacy and Surveillance with New Technologies (Peter P. Swire and Kenesa Ahmad, editors), and National Security and Free Speech: The Debate Since 9/11 (Christopher M. Finan, editor).
Copies of the book can be ordered here.
The Human Rights Institute serves as the focal point of international human rights education, scholarship and practice at Columbia Law School. Follow us on Twitter @CLShumanrights.