Friday, September 20, 2013

Satellite imagery can be used to violate human rights, or to protect them.

With today's technology we have achieved so much, our whole life quality has changed dramatically in the past couple of years, everything has become more accessible and easier, it also helps us connect with people from all around world, but can technology do harm?
Well when it comes to satellite imagery the subject is debatable. Satellite imagery has helped country's violate human rights, it was only recently published that in the 1980s when Iraq was at war against Iran, the US sent satellite imagery to Iraqi forces in order for them to plan future chemical attacks against Iran. So we can see how satellite imagery can help violate human rights, but can it help to protect them too?
Well a Yale study was able to identify certain genocides occurring at Darfur by interpreting images of changes in vegetation in the region. Actor George Clooney has joined forces with the anti- genocide activists to launch the "Satellite Sentinel Project" which tracks human rights violations as they happen throughout the world; Clooney has called it "the antigenocide paparazzi". We can see how the same technology can be used for two opposite purposes, that's why I think we as human beings need to channel our efforts to use technology in order to make our planet better off, technology will never stop to evolve, but technology is a neutral item, the way you decide to use technology is what counts, and in my opinion our main focus as human beings should be using technology to prevent further human rights violations.

1 comment:

  1. Yes, this is a very interesting question. It's the HOW to technology that counts the most. But I also wonder if it's even possible to totally stop "bad" uses of technology. Guns both protect and kill. But we know that part of protecting someone can mean killing someone else when we use a gun. Satellite images can help, but they also hurt. Could we even know how they help if they didn't hurt as well?