Bernard Brodie: The Absolute Weapon

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Brodie, B. (1946). The Absolute Weapon. Connecticut, New Haven. Yale Institute of International Studies. The original paper/dissertation of Bernard Brodie, which was the first to really theorize and expand on the new reality of Nuclear Warfare. Again, because Nuclear Warfare was so absolutely altering to war, I believe a lot of these theories and thoughts can be studied and applied upon our new reality of UAS warfare and robotic systems changing and altering the field of war. I further believe and want to vet out and theorize that unmanned systems (US) warfare may actually be more altering to war than even Nuclear warfare. Austin, R. (2010). Unmanned aircraft systems: UAVS design, development, and deployment. Chichester, U.K: John Wiley…show more content…
The problem with this, is that Brodie (1946) was both correct and incorrect. He correctly identified that speed kills, but, he incorrectly thought that nuclear warfare was the ultimate weapon. While Brodie and his theories on Nuclear warfare in, The Absolute Weapon, gave us the predominant strategy of nuclear warfare still used today, a strong argument can be made that Admiral Nimitz was correct in his criticism of “the Absolute weapon.” “Before risking our future by accepting these ideas at face value, let us examine the historical truth that, at least up to this time, there has never yet been a weapon against which man has been unable to devise a counter-weapon or defense.” Admiral Nimitz Ultimately, what Brodie was perhaps leading too was that there is an “Absolute Weapon” in war. If you could find a way to distill war down to its absolute properties, perhaps you could create the ultimate weapon. What we have witnessed thus far is that speed kills. Brodie (1946) was perhaps just too eager to place this title on Nuclear Weapons, when it is possible that they are not the absolute representation of speed and…show more content…
Non human autonomous combatants, like airplanes and the future vision of Douhet, where the potential of aerospace warfare would lie, the mitigation or complete negation of physical barriers that armies and navies must inherently adhere too, airplanes can ignore. This is where the potential of unmanned warfare lies, the ability of RANH to ignore and operate without the limitations of humans. This genre of warfare is ‘Musashian’ in theory and thought. That speed and death will prevail, once swords are drawn. Clausewitz would have a problem with this, because he would say, that war is only a continuation of peace or policy with other means. Would RANH have any comprehension of peace terms during warfighting? This may be the conflict of unmanned warfare. However, we are accelerating at such a pace in technology and capability, it is impossible to tell what this would look like before letting the first RANH spar with human and non human opponents. If RANH are focused on the ultimate distillation of war, destruction of an opponent through speed and force, holding relentlessly to the laws of war on the battlefield, like their predecessors on the chessboard, than we will see a purer form of war
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