UNT Air Power Symposium speaker to discuss new technology used in war

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

What: Wired for War -- The annual Air Power Symposium presented by the University of North Texas Military History Center. Featuring Dr. Peter Warren Singer, senior fellow and director of the 21st Century Defense Initiative at the Brookings Institution, as the guest speaker.

When: 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m. April 20 (Tuesday)

Where: Fort Worth Museum of Science and History, 1600 Gendy St., Fort Worth

Cost: $50; includes lunch. Reservations must be made by April 6 (Tuesday)

Contact: UNT Department of History at 940-565-2288
DENTON (UNT), Texas -- In Afghanistan, the U.S. military's remote-controlled drones take out terrorists, while in Iraq, the number of unmanned systems on the ground increased from zero at the start of the war to 12,000 in five years.

Dr. Peter Warren Singer, senior fellow and director of the 21st Century Defense Initiative at the Brookings Institution in Washington, D.C., will discuss the implications of robotics and other new technologies for war, including new prototype planes that could make human fighter pilots obsolete and tiny robots the size of flies to carry out reconnaissance work during the annual Air Power Symposium sponsored by the University of North Texas Military History Center April 20 (Tuesday).

Wired for War, which is also the title of Singer's 2009 book, will take place from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History, 1600 Gendy St. The symposium includes lunch and Singer's keynote address.
The event costs $50. Reservations must be made by April 6 (Tuesday) by contacting the UNT Department of History at 940-565-2288.

The Military History Center's Air Power Symposium began last year through funding by the Aviation Heritage Association, a nonprofit organization dedicated to preserving North Texas' aviation history. The association produced the Fort Worth Alliance Air Show for 18 years before the show was taken over by Alliance Aviation Services.

The center, which has a goal of building one of the premier military history programs in the U.S., has a long tradition of sponsoring public programs. Since 1983, it has held the invitation-only Alfred Hurley Military History Seminar -- named for the president and chancellor emeritus of UNT -- during the fall semester.

Singer is the youngest scholar named a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution in the institution's 90-year history. In 2009, he was named by Foreign Policy Magazine to the Top 100 Global Thinkers list, which included those whose ideas most influenced the world that year.

Wired for War made the New York Times nonfiction bestseller list during its first week of release, and was named a nonfiction book of the year by The Financial Times. It has been featured in the video game Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriot, CBS' Late, Late Show and Comedy Central's The Daily Show, and has been used for required reading by the National Defense University and the Royal Australian Navy.

Singer is also the author of Children at War, which explores child soldier groups. The book received the 2006 Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Book of the Year Award and was made into an A&E/History Channel documentary, Child Warriors, in 2008. Singer also served as a consultant on the issue to the U.S. Marine Corps and Congress, and the recommendations in the book resulted in changes in the UN peacekeeping training program.

Singer's first book, Corporate Warriors: The Rise of the Privatized Military Industry, pioneered the study of the industry of private companies providing military services for hire -- an issue that became important with the use and abuse of these companies in Iraq. The book was named the best book of the year for 2003 by the American Political Science Association, among the top five international affairs books of the year by the Gelber Prize and a "top 10 summer read" by Businessweek.

Before his current position at the Brookings Institution, Singer was the founding director of the institution's Project on U.S. Policy Toward the Islamic World. He is also a founder and organizer of the U.S.-Islamic World Forum, a global conference that brings together leaders from across the U.S. and the Muslim world. In addition, he was a consultant for the TV dramas The West Wing and 24 and the 2008 movie Traitor.

Singer is a graduate of Harvard University and Princeton University's Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs.

UNT News Service Phone Number: (940) 565-2108