Killer Robots: Still No International Laws To Govern Their Use

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Technocrats in militaries around the world are in a pitched arms race to develop fully autonomous killer robots. Proponents claim that it will make warfare more efficient and yet more ‘humane’ because fewer people would be killed.

This is insane thinking. The risk of misuse by rogue and authoritarian government and terrorists is 100 percent. However, Technocrats invent because the can, not because there is a demonstrated need to do so. ⁃ TN Editor

Countries are rapidly developing “killer robots” – machines with artificial intelligence (AI) that independently kill – but are moving at a snail’s pace on agreeing global rules over their use in future wars, warn technology and human rights experts.

From drones and missiles to tanks and submarines, semi-autonomous weapons systems have been used for decades to eliminate targets in modern day warfare – but they all have human supervision.

Dramatization/Simulation

Nations such as the United States, Russia and Israel are now investing in developing lethal autonomous weapons systems (LAWS) which can identify, target, and kill a person all on their own – but to date there are no international laws governing their use.

“Some kind of human control is necessary … Only humans can make context-specific judgements of distinction, proportionality and precautions in combat,” said Peter Maurer, President of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC).

“(Building consensus) is the big issue we are dealing with and unsurprisingly, those who have today invested a lot of capacities and do have certain skill which promise advantages to them, are more reluctant than those who don’t.”

The ICRC oversaw the adoption of the 1949 Geneva Conventions that define the laws of war and the rights of civilians to protection and assistance during conflicts and it engages with governments to adapt these rules to modern warfare.

AI researchers, defence analysts and roboticists say LAWS such as military robots are no longer confined to the realm of science fiction or video games, but are fast progressing from graphic design boards to defence engineering laboratories.

Within a few years, they could be deployed by state militaries to the battlefield, they add, painting dystopian scenarios of swarms of drones moving through a town or city, scanning and selectively killing their targets within seconds.

Death by Algorithm

This has raised ethical concerns from human rights groups and some tech experts who say giving machines the power of life and death violates the principles of human dignity.

Not only are LAWS vulnerable to interference and hacking which would result in increased civilian deaths, they add, but their deployment would raise questions over who would be held accountable in the event of misuse.

“Don’t be mistaken by the nonsense of how intelligent these weapons will be,” said Noel Sharkey, chairman of the International Committee for Robot Arms Control.

“You simply can’t trust an algorithm – no matter how smart – to seek out, identify and kill the correct target, especially in the complexity of war,” said Sharkey, who is also an AI and robotics expert at Britain’s University of Sheffield.

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Jim Reinhart
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Jim Reinhart

This a must watch video and article that points out that there are many people that have no concept of what it is the be human as they have lost their humanity. The fact that there are people that can get excited about such a depraved concept and activity, to me at least, means we must get back to basics and wipe down the MIC, and in the US, take bases out of every other nation and cut ours by 50% and then we would be at the Chinese or Soviet (Russia) level as the defense department has also managed… Read more »

justsayin
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justsayin

It’s really hard to comprehend how late the hour is. There is no going back and things will get worse and worse. The book of Revelation seems so real to us now. To think all will be destroyed is hard to fathom. But it will all be destroyed for sure. ‘But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up. Seeing then that… Read more »

justsayin
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justsayin

Jesus says, “For there shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be. And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened.” Matthew 24:22-23. Now if you read the book of Revelation chapter 9 we see four angels loosed, and an army prepared for the perfect time and they will slay 1/3 of mankind. Also the army is 200 million and sitting on horses that are strange. They have breastplates of fire, and… Read more »