Activity: Talks and presentations › Conference presentations
Remote Warfare has become a ‘catch-all’ term, used to describe the ‘light footprint’, ‘low-risk’, and ‘distant’ characteristics of contemporary American conflict. Typified by a reliance on military airpower, new weapon technologies, special operations forces, and the support of local partners, proxies, and surrogates, this form of modern warfare has allowed the United States to meet national security threats globally, yet without ever having to endure the heavy cost to American life that defined Afghanistan (2001) and Iraq (2003). Nevertheless, in this article we argue that the character of Remote Warfare is quickly changing. By analysing the case of Niger, we highlight how the means and mechanisms of Remote Warfare have proliferated to a plethora of state actors, with varying ambitions, who now combine to saturate distant zones of conflict and sovereign nations considered to be ‘strategic choke-points’. Although adopted as the blueprint for militarily effective and politically astute global force deployment by a range of nations, we question the extent to which it is still politically useful, militarily effective, or indeed academically accurate to consider Remote Warfare as ‘light-footprint’ at all.