Presidential Use of Force in the Drone Age
42 Pages Posted: 18 Jan 2014 Last revised: 17 Nov 2015
Date Written: January 16, 2014
The diversionary hypothesis has advanced substantially and now recognizes that opportunities to use force diminish when a president’s need is greatest. Drone technology, however, now supplies presidents with an opportunity-creating tool. The War on Terror’s ever-present, stateless belligerents and the relatively insignificant operating costs of drone technology have fundamentally altered the cost-benefit calculus underlying use of force abroad allowing for stronger theoretical linkages between domestic political conditions and a president’s foreign policy decisions. Using data measuring drone strikes outside of congressionally sanctioned warzones, we show that political and economic domestic conditions indeed influence the president’s use of drone force.
Keywords: Foreign Policy, Domestic Politics, Presidency, Terrorism, Drones, Executive Power, Political Use of Force
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation