Performance-enhancing technologies and moral responsibility in the military

American Journal of Bioethics 8 (2):28 – 38 (2008)
Abstract
New scientific advances have created previously unheard of possibilities for enhancing combatants' performance. Future war fighters may be smarter, stronger, and braver than ever before. If these technologies are safe, is there any reason to reject their use? In this article, I argue that the use of enhancements is constrained by the importance of maintaining the moral responsibility of military personnel. This is crucial for two reasons: the military's ethical commitments require military personnel to be morally responsible agents, and moral responsibility is necessary for integrity and the moral emotions of guilt and remorse, both of which are important for moral growth and psychological well-being. Enhancements that undermined combatants' moral responsibility would therefore undermine the military's moral standing and would harm combatants' well-being. A genuine commitment to maintaining the military's ethical standards and the well-being of combatants therefore requires a careful analysis of performance-enhancing technologies before they are implemented.
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DOI 10.1080/15265160802014969
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References found in this work BETA
What Sort of People Should There Be?Jonathan Glover - forthcoming - Philosophical Explorations.

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Citations of this work BETA
Ethical Blowback From Emerging Technologies.Patrick Lin - 2010 - Journal of Military Ethics 9 (4):313-331.
Who's to Regret, What's to Regret?Andrew Fenton & Timothy Krahn - 2008 - American Journal of Bioethics 8 (2):42 – 43.
Regulating Biomedical Enhancements in the Military.Richard Edmund Ashcroft - 2008 - American Journal of Bioethics 8 (2):47 – 49.
Soldiers as Agents.Richard H. Dees - 2008 - American Journal of Bioethics 8 (2):46 – 47.

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