The AK-47 was the most popular weapon of the 20th century, changing the face of warfare forever. A new breed of autonomous weapons threatens to do the same for this century, and for cheap.

Words: Mic Wright
Illustration: Timo Meyer

When he was a boy, Mikhail Kalashnikov wanted to be…

We often mistake Hollywood’s dramatic interpretation of cyberwarfare for reality.In fact, it is prosaic, pervasive and already shaping humanity’s future.

Words: Sophia Epstein
Illustration: Mike Lemanski

We’ve all consumed enough hours of Hollywood blockbusters for the expression “Cyberwar!” to trigger images of bright green code being hijacked by an evil…

In the future, water may become an increasingly scarce resource and a source of violent conflict. But history teaches us that the scarcity of water is often a tool for brokering peace.

Words: Kira Walker
Illustration: Alva Skog

Around 4,500 years ago, the Sumerian city-states of Lagash and Umma went…

For most refugees, seeking asylum is a long and slow process, robbing them of agency and forcing them to relive past trauma. Even the judges presiding over the system have had enough.

Words: Phoebe West
Illustration: Paul Willoughby

In the summer of 2019, a first-tier asylum tribunal hearing was held…

At its height, the British empire controlled nearly a quarter of the earth’s territory, ruling subjected peoples with violence and propaganda. For many, the legacy of that rule is still alive and well today.

Words: Kieran Yates
Illustration: Ari Liloan

In the middle of a boring geography lesson, a young…

In British Columbia, the First Nations are at war with oil and gas companies intent on exploiting their indigenous lands, and with each other over governance and tensions between a “democratic” present and their ancestral past.

Words: Dave Robertson
Illustration: Adrian Johnson

Set in the middle of a long, frigid…

After the death of George Floyd and the resulting Black Lives Matter protests, images of heavily militarised police became ubiquitous in the media. For a state body supposed to “protect and serve” its citizens, police the world over are increasingly being trained to fight against them.

Words: Yiannis Baboulias
Illustration: James…

The voices of women have typically been written out of the history of conflicts and omitted from efforts to rebuild societies in the aftermath of war. In Syria, one organisation is looking to change that.

Words: Aarathi Prasad
Illustration: Rose Wong

Late in 2012, a mortar shell hit the Syrian…

Rising sea levels, unstable weather patterns, famine, floods and drought have all been mooted as causes of future conflicts. But are society’s structural inequalities the real risk to life as our planet becomes less stable?

Words: Phoebe Braithwaite
Illustration: Oscar Bolton Green

At 8pm every night during the months of…

After the first wave of the coronavirus pandemic eased, people around the world started to enjoy their newfound freedom. In fact, due to the expansion of anti-terrorist legislation, many were emerging into a much more restricted world than they’d known before.

Words: Suddaf Chaudry
Illustration: Sebastian König

Denial and obfuscation…

Weapons of Reason

A publishing project by @HumanAfterAllStudio to understand & articulate the global challenges shaping our world. Find out more

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