91) Drones and Terrorism


In warzones, ordinary commercially-available drones are used for extraordinary reconnaissance and information gathering. They can also be used for bombings - a drone carrying an explosive charge is potentially a powerful weapon. At the same time asymmetric warfare has become the norm - with large states increasingly fighting marginal terrorist groups in the Middle East and elsewhere. We are entering the age of the drone terrorist - groups such as Hezbollah are already using them in the Middle East. Today, Grossman explains the ways in which the United States, Israel and other advanced militaries use aerial drones and ground-based robots to fight non-state actors (e.g. ISIS, al Qaeda, the Iraqi and Afghan insurgencies, Hezbollah, Hamas, etc.) and how these groups, as well as individual terrorists, are utilizing less advanced commercially-available drones to fight powerful state opponents.

Bio: Nicholas Grossman is a lecturer in political science, teaching classes on terrorism and insurgency; national security policy; and 21st century technology and warfare, primarily robotic systems. He joined the UI faculty in 2013 after receiving his PhD from the University of Maryland. His research focuses on unmanned aerial vehicles (commonly known as drones) and how robotic technology affects the strategies of both sides in asymmetric warfare. He is also a frequent contributor to Arc Digital (https://thearcmag.com/), primarily writing on American foreign policy and national security.