The US Drone Programme and the Government’s Discourses of Legitimation
Marina Espionza is a CAPPE doctoral student whose research interests include : technology and war, surveillance, ethics, geo-politics, discourse analysis, counter-terrorism, terrorism, post-colonial theory, security, and drone programmes. She is supervised by Bob Brecher and Robin Dunford.
My research currently focuses on the precision, ethical and legal discourses used by the Obama administration to legitimate the drone programme. My thesis critically examines the discourses used to justify the programme, as well as the ethical and legal frameworks used by academic proponents of the programme. It demonstrates the ways in which government rhetoric and arguments from academic backers fail to represent the programme when in use. My research focuses on the ways in which the programme upsets the ethical and legal frameworks used by the government until they are inapplicable and inadequate, and in the continuities between the discourses used by the Obama administration to justify its violence and that of imperial powers. My analysis of government rhetoric and of the drone programme’s targeting practices draws especially on Edward Said’s Orientalism.