March 22, 2022

How access to satellite images shifts the view of war

Source: BBC

Journalist: Chris Baraniuk

Rita Konaev, associate director of analysis at Georgetown University's Center for Security and Emerging Technology, says satellite imagery "has been an aspect of modern conflict for 10 to 15 years now, but the scale [this time] is different and the accessibility is different," she adds, suggesting satellite imagery has helped to challenge disinformation about the invasion.

"The architecture of European cities like Kyiv is very familiar in the Western world," adds Dr Konaev. This familiarity, she suggests, may have influenced the response in the West to the invasion - in contrast with wars in the Middle East and further afield.


But there could be some significant consequences of making such detailed imagery so widely available.

Although militaries have vast intelligence resources that they rely on beyond social media, there is no knowing how satellite images of troop movements shared on Twitter, or Facebook, could influence operational decisions on the ground.

"There are real, potential life or death consequences," says Dr Konaev.

Read the full story and more from BBC.


  • Margarita "Rita" Konaev

    Adjunct Senior Fellow, Technology and National Security Program

    Dr. Margarita Konaev is a Research Fellow at Georgetown’s Center for Security and Emerging Technology (CSET) interested in military applications of AI and Russian military inn...