IRW Co-founders Dr Lauren Gould and Prof Dr Jolle Demmers alongside Dr Nora Stel from Radbound University have written an article for The Conversation titled “Collateral damage: crushing the myths of accuracy and accountability in modern warfare”.
The article examines the latest allegations against the US military regarding the cover-up of civilian causalities during the US-led Coalition war against ISIS. These allegations relate to an article released by the New York Times on November 13 2021 which details how 80 civilians were killed in Baghuz, Syria in 2019 by a US F-15 airstrike. In the aftermath of the airstrike, US military personnel tried to flag the incident as a possible war crime, however, their concerns were ignored, investigations were squashed, and evidence was buried.
Gould, Demmers and Stel draw the comparison between the Baghuz case and the 2015 Dutch case of the Hawija bombardment of a weapons factory, which killed 70 civilians. They detail how Western Governments have used denial, secrecy and strategic ignorance to gloss over incidents of civilian harm resulting from their military campaigns abroad.
To read the article, click the link.
Dr Lauren Gould is a Co-founder and Project Leader of The Intimacies of Remote Warfare research programme. In addition, she is an Assistant Professor at the Center for Conflict Studies at Utrecht University.
Prof Dr Jolle Demmers is a Co-founder of The Intimacies of Remote Warfare research programme and a Professor at the Center for Conflict Studies at Utrecht University.
Dr Nora Stel is an Assistant Professor of International Relations at Radboud University in Nijmegen.