Dehumanization of Warfare

Legal Implications of New Weapon Technologies

  • Wolff Heintschel von Heinegg
  • Robert Frau
  • Tassilo Singer

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-x
  2. Wolff Heintschel von Heinegg, Robert Frau, Tassilo Singer
    Pages 1-11
  3. Dehumanization of Warfare and International Humanitarian Law

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 13-13
  4. Ethical Challenges of Dehumanization

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 53-53
    2. Jan C. Joerden
      Pages 55-73
  5. Unmanned Systems in Particular at Sea and Land

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 75-75
    2. Georg Heppner, Ruediger Dillmann
      Pages 77-98
  6. Cyber Warfare

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 127-127
    2. Stefan Meier
      Pages 129-145
    3. Sigmar Stadlmeier
      Pages 147-160
  7. Specific Aspects of Dehumanization

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 161-161
    2. Heather A. Harrison Dinniss, Jann K. Kleffner
      Pages 163-205
    3. Wolff Heintschel von Heinegg, Robert Frau, Tassilo Singer
      Pages 219-230
  8. Back Matter
    Pages 231-233

About this book


This book addresses the technological evolution of modern warfare due to unmanned systems and the growing capacity for cyberwarfare. The increasing involvement of unmanned means and methods of warfare can lead to a total removal of humans from the navigation, command and decision-making processes in the control of unmanned systems, and as such away from participation in hostilities – the “dehumanization of warfare.” This raises the question of whether and how today’s law is suitable for governing the dehumanization of warfare effectively. Which rules are relevant? Do interpretations of relevant rules need to be reviewed or is further and adapted regulation necessary? Moreover, ethical reasoning and computer science developments also have to be taken into account in identifying problems. Adopting an interdisciplinary approach the book focuses primarily on international humanitarian law, with related ethics and computer science aspects included in the discussion and the analysis.


Autonomous weapons Cyberwarfare Dehumanization Law of armed conflict Military robots

Editors and affiliations

  • Wolff Heintschel von Heinegg
    • 1
  • Robert Frau
    • 2
  • Tassilo Singer
    • 3
  1. 1.Faculty of LawEuropean University ViadrinaFrankfurt (Oder)Germany
  2. 2.Faculty of LawEuropean University ViadrinaFrankfurt (Oder)Germany
  3. 3.University of Passau PassauGermany

Bibliographic information