—KEN MOSS, professor, Eisenhower School for National Security and Resource Strategy, and author of Undeclared War and the Future of U.S. Foreign Policy
"An important and timely work about a phenomenon that technological advances are making ever more possible: the deployment of autonomous weapons systems. Concerned with the ease with which America now uses lethal force with impunity, Riza raises essential ethical, moral, legal, and operational questions that civilian policymakers, military officials, and citizens should consider before the United States fields killer robots. An excellent book."
—MICAH ZENKO, Council on Foreign Relations and author of Between Threats and War: U.S. Discrete Military Operations in the Post-Cold War World
"In an unusually articulate, well-organized, and brilliantly written book, Shane Riza implores us not to be seduced by technology but to search our hearts and minds and make moral and objective decisions about robotic systems in military operations. Using his experiences as an air warrior, his training in moral reasoning and his gift for scientific research, he has produced a highly readable book that will appeal to the profession of arms, to the moral philosopher, and to the government policymaker. The real value here is the articulate basis for classroom discussion on the moral dilemma of our time. The unique organization, nuanced articulation of complex ideas, and interdisciplinary thought process are trailblazing. This is a book that one cannot put down—its contents will haunt you. A work that will be well and repeatedly used by those studying the ramifications of robotic warfare."
—WILLIAM G. ECKHARDT, U.S. Army Colonel (Ret.), Judge Advocate Corps, and chief My Lai prosecutor; University of Missouri, Kansas City Teaching Professor of Law
"'The sweat from the fear of death has a smell all its own…'
You won’t read another book on robotics and warfare quite like this one. Col. Shane Riza joins the sparse ranks of fighter pilots who ruminate – and write about it. All the intellectual content is here, with plenty of just war theory and Hiroshima and Xenophon peppered in alongside the Predators and Hellfires. What’s so unusual about Killing Without Heart is how Riza turns his own experience of war, family, and matters of the heart into an extended essay on morality, autonomy and the necessary hesitation of the trained killer. His insights make for a unique take on how unmanned vehicles affect morality in war. Riza asks hard questions. Will unmanned warfare once and for all destroy any vestige of a warrior ethos in technologically advanced militaries? Does automated warfare remove the sense of the tragic and alter our understanding of the essence of war? Will robotic warfare accelerate the demise of the warrior spirit, or force a new understanding of this ancient concept? Riza’s questions make you think. Much of his argument pivots around risk and gut feeling. And he knows true risk first-hand: how to stifle it in the fighter cockpit over Iraq, and how its memory intrudes in the quiet moments, like early morning goodbyes or when tucking his children into bed. Fighter pilots with 'the right stuff' oh so rarely put pen to paper. Be glad Riza followed his heart to produce this book."
—REBECCA GRANT, Washington Security Forum, former director of the General Billy Mitchell Institute for Air Power Studies, and frequent contributor to Air Force Magazine
"Killing without Heart is a book that any policy maker and national decision maker should pick up and read to better be informed on the morality of unmanned and autonomous weapons systems."—Daniel P. Sukman, Strategos