In Avengers: Infinity War, when Gamora is explaining what Thanos intends to do with the Infinity Stones,

Gamora: The entire time I knew Thanos, he only ever had one goal: To bring balance to the Universe by wiping out half of all life. He used to kill people planet by planet, massacre by massacre.

Drax: Including my own.

Gamora: If he gets all six Infinity Stones, he can do it with the snap of his fingers, like this. [She snaps her fingers.]
Avengers: Infinity War (2018)

Later, when Thanos arrives at Titan,

Doctor Stephen Strange: Who wants to murder trillions.

Thanos: With all six stones, I could simply snap my fingers, and they would all cease to exist. I call that... mercy.
Avengers: Infinity War (2018)

Both instances indicating that the "Snap" is intended for living beings only. However, in Avengers: Endgame, we see that

when Tony snaps, the cavalry like the Chitauri ships and Outriders' ships etc. are dusted as well.

Screenshots showing ships before unsnap - no ships after unsnap
Avengers: Endgame (2019)

Have the writers given any explanation on this?

  • 10
    For the record, with the power of the stones you can do anything. That's not limited to just killing living beings, it's limited to doing absolutely anything you want, which presumably boiled down to 'dust everything associated with Thanos' army'.
    – Valorum
    Commented Aug 3, 2019 at 21:49
  • 3
    What Valorum said ^. Thanos wanted to "snap" 1/2 of all life in the universe away, but that's just what he wanted to do. He could've just as easily "snapped" the galaxy bigger and let life spread between more planets or something else, but opted for his solution. No reason why space-army-dusting couldn't be done, and it does make damage cleanup easier. Commented Aug 3, 2019 at 21:53
  • @Valorum I agree with both of you. I’m just looking if there’s anything specified. I mean in both of the movies they only talk about the snap dusting only living beings right?
    – Shreedhar
    Commented Aug 3, 2019 at 21:55
  • @Shreedhar: “I mean in both of the movies they only talk about the snap dusting only living beings right?” — Thanos, before the final battle, says that because wiping out half of all life clearly didn't teach the universe the right lesson, he's going to rebuild the entire universe scratch this time. That's a bit more than dusting, and a bit more than living beings. Commented Aug 4, 2019 at 19:02
  • I've reopened this question since it wasn't a dupe of the one about chitauri ships, and re-closed it as a dupe of something which is actually asking the same thing. (Thanks to a flagger for bringing the poor dupe situation to mod attention.)
    – Rand al'Thor
    Commented Aug 22, 2019 at 8:57