René Girard argues that violence and the sacred are inseparable, yet how do the political boundaries of sacrifice shift when state violence is privatized and increasingly disembodied? This article provides a Foucauldian challenge to Girard by invoking the mutually reinforcing problem of military privatization and drone warfare. Using Foucauldian work on race and biopolitics, I will explore how military privatization permits states to call for the end of sacrifice. I trace the genealogical trajectories of the citizen-soldier to argue that military privatization, as exemplified by the burgeoning industry of private military and security companies and the current American administration’s use of drone warfare, allows for the removal of sacrifice as a feature of the post-World War II social contract between states and citizens. Historically, the sacrifices of citizen-soldiers have been consecrated within the boundaries of the nation and memorialized in a way that allows for both the production of shared collective memory and a projected future-oriented discourse of unification through shared national or ethnic destiny. Drones, as the technological extension of the philosophy of military privatization and the high-tech expression of ‘pre-modern’ violence, reveal tensions between embodied combat, citizenship and sacrifice.
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DOI 10.1177/1755088214555597
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References found in this work BETA

Necropolitics.Achille Mbembe - 2008 - In Stephen Morton & Stephen Bygrave (eds.), Foucault in an Age of Terror: Essays on Biopolitics and the Defence of Society. Palgrave-Macmillan.
The Case for Ethical Autonomy in Unmanned Systems.Ronald C. Arkin - 2010 - Journal of Military Ethics 9 (4):332-341.

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Special Operations Remote Advise and Assist: An Ethics Assessment.Deane-Peter Baker - 2019 - Ethics and Information Technology 21 (1):1-10.

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