Drones are playing an increasing and controversial role in modern warfare. From Afghanistan and Pakistan to Iran and Yemen, they have become a ubiquitous symbol of the war on terror, both celebrated and reviled for their precision bombing technology and intelligence gathering.
This same drone technology is soon to be adopted for law enforcement, border patrols, weather surveillance and even ‘drone journalism’. In less that three years the US congress will allow tens of thousands of drones access to US airspace, raising serious and as yet unaddressed privacy, legal and security questions about their use.
Please join ABC foreign correspondent Mark Corcoran, author Andrew Croome whose new novel Midnight Empire examines the nature of drone warfare and the Lowy Institute’s Interpreter blog editor Sam Roggeveen as they discuss the modern- day implications of drone technologies.
Mark Corcoran has spent 15 years travelling to every continent on the globe for the ABC’s Foreign Correspondent, from Afghanistan to Antarctica and more than 40 countries in between. Corcoran has a special interest in South Asia, terrorism and security related issues. Since 2001 he’s reported extensively on the impact of Washington's “war on terror” from locations as diverse as Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq, Yemen, Syria, Somalia, France, Norway, the US and Greece. His numerous awards include the Walkley Award for International Reporting and a Logie Award as the producer of the Most Outstanding Public Affairs report
Andrew Croome is a writer living in Canberra, who has worked as a computer programmer, writing teacher and copywriter. His first work of fiction Document Z, a Cold War historical novel, won the 2008 The Australian/Vogel’s Literary Award, the UTS Award for New Writing at the NSW Premier’s Literary Awards, and was shortlisted for the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize for Best First Book and the Ned Kelly Award for Best First Fiction. In 2010 Andrew was named a Sydney Morning Herald Young Novelist of the Year. He holds a PhD in Creative Writing from the University of Melbourne. His recently published second novel, Midnight Empire, focuses on drone warfare and poker.
Sam Roggeveen is the founding editor of the Lowy Institute’s blog, The Interpreter. Previously Sam was a senior strategic analyst in Australia's peak intelligence agency, the Office of National Assessments, where his work dealt mainly with nuclear strategy and arms control, ballistic-missile defence, North Asian strategic affairs and WMD terrorism. Sam also worked on arms control policy in Australia's Department of Foreign Affairs, and as an analyst in the Defence Intelligence Organisation.