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Articles on Weapons

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A British Pattern 1907 bayonet with leather scabbard. Wikimedia Commons

Friday essay: a short, sharp history of the bayonet

There is no weapon more visceral than the bayonet. It encourages an intimate form of killing, and during WW1, Australia troops plunged, parried and stabbed with great vigour.
The MK 15 Phalanx close-in weapons system, on the USS Reuben James guided-missile frigate, fires during an exercise. Flickr/US Pacific Fleet

Why it’s so hard to reach an international agreement on killer robots

We already have some autonomous weapons – so talk of any ban should focus on where we draw the line on what is acceptable, and what is not. Can we at least agree on that?
The controversial $12-billion sale of light armoured vehicles to Saudi Arabia has embroiled Justin Trudeau’s government in controversy. The vehicle in question is shown here at a news conference at a General Dynamics facility in London, Ont., in 2012. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Mark Spowart

Canada’s checkered history of arms sales to human rights violators

Canada used to be more careful about selling arms to countries that practised human rights violations. What happened?
Robots are currently used by police for bomb disposal. Future versions will be much more sophisticated. Nigel Roddis/AAP

Three ways robots can save lives in war

Robots are a twin-edged sword. Used badly, they may one day perpetrate genocide and war crimes. Used well, they can prevent them.

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