Arms Control Groups Challenge Planned U.S. Military Reliance on Robot-Controlled Weapons
Two international arms control groups Monday issued a report that called for maintaining human control over a new generation of weapons that are increasingly capable of targeting and attacking without the involvement of people.
The report (pdf), which came from Human Rights Watch and the Harvard Law School International Human Rights Clinic at the opening of a weeklong United Nations meeting on autonomous weapons in Geneva, potentially challenges an emerging U.S. military strategy that will count on technology advantages and increasingly depend on weapons systems that blend humans and machines.
That strategy has been described as the Third Offset strategy and it seeks to exploit technologies to maintain U.S. military superiority. Pentagon officials have recently stated that the new technologies — and particularly artificial intelligence software — will help, rather than replace, human soldiers who must make killing decisions.
“Machines have long served as instruments of war, but historically humans have always dictated how they are used,” the report, titled “Killer Robots and the Concept of Meaningful Human Control,” said.