The Ethics of Psychological Warfare

In many ways, psychological warfare can be seen as another example of both the military uses and abuses of science in the Second World War. Many people believe that a scientific development in the name of war is justifiable "only when it is used to conserve life, or if it is in response--direct or anticipated--to some new threat." Is this the case in psychological warfare, or is it more often the calculated development of weapons of unnecessary suffering?

The psychologist Robert Watson argues that the new scientific concepts that are arising in psychological warfare "owe more to the scientist's fertile brain than to the needs of the military situation." The development of psychological warfare may be another tragic example of "scientists leading the politicians in directions they cannot know and with implications that cannot be foreseen"

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