WATCH: THE KILL CLOUD — Networked Warfare, Drones & AI

A two-day conference on drone warfare and other advanced technological means of killing starts at noon EDT today from Berlin. Watch it here.

Full two-day program below. All times CET, currently five hours ahead of EDT. Streamed by the Disruption Network Lab, which is hosting its 26th conference.



Friday, March 25 · 2022

17:00 · Doors Open

17:30—17:40 · INTRODUCTION

Tatiana Bazzichelli (Artistic Director, Disruption Network Lab, IT/DE)

17:40–19:00 · KEYNOTE: The Kill Cloud: Real World Implications of Network Centric Warfare

Lisa Ling (Whistleblower, Former Technical Sergeant, US Air Force Drone Surveillance Programme, US), Cian Westmoreland (Whistleblower, Former US Air Force Drone Technician, US). Moderated by Daniel Eriksson (CEO of Transparency International, SE/DE).

19:30–21:00 PANEL: The Future of War: Drone Surveillance, Killer Robots & Lethal AI Weapons

Laura Nolan (Member, ICRAC – International Committee for Robot Arms Control, IE), Jack Poulson (Executive Director, Tech Inquiry, US), Taniel Yusef (Women’s International League for Peace & Freedom, UK). Moderated by Theresa Züger (Research Group Lead: Public Interest AI, AI & Society Lab, DE).

Saturday March 26, 2022

15:30 · Doors Open

16:00–17:30 · PANEL: Beyond Human Control: The impact of the Drone War on Civilians

Chantal Meloni (Criminal Lawyer, ECCHR & Professor, University of Milan, IT/DE), Khalil Dewan (Head of Investigations, Stoke White Investigations, UK), Emran Feroz (Journalist and Author, AF/AT/DE). Moderated by John Goetz (Investigative Journalist, NDR, US/DE) .

17:45–18:15 · INSIGHT: The Art of War, the Moral Law & the Art of Whistleblowing

Brandon Bryant (Whistleblower, Former US Air Force Drone Operator, US), Introduced by Tatiana Bazzichelli (Artistic Director, Disruption Network Lab, IT/DE).

18:45–20:20 · FILM SCREENING: National Bird (not streamed)

Documentary, 2016, US/DE 1h 32m, English language, directed by Sonia Kennebeck. Featuring Daniel Hale (Private Contractor and Former Signals Intelligence Analyst), Lisa Ling (Former Technical Sergeant on Drone Surveillance System), Heather Linebaugh (Former Drone Imagery Analyst), Jesselyn Radack, Asma Nazihi Eschen, and others. Produced by: Sonia Kennebeck and Ines Hoffmann Kanna. Cinematography: Torsten Lapp. Edited by Maxine Goedicke. Music by Insa Rudolph. Executive Producers: Wim Wenders, Errol Morris. Website

20:30–21:30 · National Bird Q&A (not streamed)

With Lisa Ling (Whistleblower, Former Technical Sergeant, Drone Surveillance Programme, US), Emily Tripp (Research Manager, Airwars, UK), Abdul Saboor Arghandiwal (Fixer and Translator, AF), Najibullah (Afghan Representative of Global Exchange, National Bird Afghanistan Production Coordinator, AF). Moderated by Katie Gallus (Geographer, Moderator & Journalist, DE).

Sunday March 27, 2022

12:00–14:00 · WORKSHOP · Collateral Damage: Monitoring Civilian Harm Through Geolocation

With Emily Tripp (Research Manager, Airwars, UK) & Clive Vella (Geolocation Specialist, Airwars, UK).

15:30–17:30 · WORKSHOP · To Play or be Played: Uncovering Gamification Techniques

With: Agnese Trocchi (Digital Communications Manager, Disruption Network Lab, Educator, IT) and Jacopo Anderlini (Researcher, Systems/Operations Engineer, IT/DE)

Background to Lisa Ling on the opening day.

Lisa Ling (Whistleblower, Former Technical Sergeant, US Air Force Drone Surveillance Programme, US), Cian Westmoreland (Whistleblower, Former US Air Force Drone Technician, US). Moderated by Daniel Eriksson (CEO of Transparency International, SE/DE). This keynote presentation introduces what Lisa Ling and Cian Westmoreland have come to call the “Kill Cloud,” a rapidly growing networked infrastructure of global reach with the primary intent of dominating every spectrum of warfare. There is a need for a critical analysis of how the “Kill Cloud” operates, from its ideological underpinnings, its ambitions, to the technological approach being pursued to achieve global military dominance over all battlespace dimensions including, space, cyberspace, and the electromagnetic spectrum itself.

Modern network centric warfare has been hidden behind the captivating image of the drone, yet these systems are vastly more complex, insidious, ubiquitous, and inaccurate than the public is aware, and its colonial underpinnings continue to bring endless war to societies across the globe. The Kill Cloud has emerged as an immense and evolving system of systems hastening the expansion of the Global War on Terror. This talk pays close attention to the US military drone programme’s contribution to the framing and evolution of modern network centric war. This Kill Cloud has far-reaching consequences beyond those of what have been traditionally considered in warfare. Read the full chapter in the book Whistleblowing for Change (Tatiana Bazzichelli, Ed. Transcript Verlag, 2021).