- Sputnik International
Get the latest news from around the world, live coverage, off-beat stories, features and analysis.

Pentagon Promises 'Will Never' Unleash Killer Robots, Despite Massive Investment

© Photo : Sony Pictures Releasing CIS / Go to the mediabankStill from Terminator Salvation: The Future Begins.
Still from Terminator Salvation: The Future Begins. - Sputnik International
Despite the Pentagon’s push for improved artificial intelligence, US Defense Secretary Ashton Carter promised it is not interested in developing killer robots.

Last month, veteran US Air Force pilot Gene Lee went up against a flight simulator using the latest in artificial intelligence.

General Atomics MQ-9 Reaper - Sputnik International
Flying Autonomous Robots: The Future of Air Combat?

"It seemed to be aware of my intentions and reacting instantly to my changes in flight and my missile deployment," Lee said, according to Breaking Defense. "It knew how to defeat the shot I was taking. It moved instantly between defensive and offensive actions as needed."

While some might see this test as early signs of a Pentagon attempt to build autonomous killing machines, Carter put those fears to rest.

"In many cases, and certainly whenever it comes to the application of force, there will never be true autonomy, because there’ll be human beings (in the loop)," he told Breaking Defense on Thursday.

Carter recently completed a trip to San Francisco, where he met with tech leaders as part of the Pentagon’s outreach to Silicon Valley.

An artist's concept of DARPA's gremlin drones. - Sputnik International
'Like What You See?': DARPA to Use Museum Exhibit to Recruit Talent

"We’re making big investments" in autonomy, he said, but asserted that any strides would have to be made within an ethical framework.

"Whatever the mix [of manned and unmanned systems], there’s always going to be human judgement and discretion," he added. "That’s both necessary and appropriate."

While the rest of the world has good reason to be suspicious of an autonomous US killing machine, claims made by an American Air Force official last month indicate that AI development may be a symptom of Pentagon paranoia.

"I don’t think it’s impossible that somebody will try to build a completely autonomous system, and I’m not talking about something like a cruise missile…or a mine that requires a human to target it and release it and it goes and finds its target," Paul Selva, vice chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

"I’m talking about a wholly robotic system that decides whether or not, at the point of decision, it’s going to do lethal ops."

Robot - Sputnik International
Pentagon Study Examines the Impending Global Domination of Killer Robots

Selva called for international regulations on AI.

"I think we do need to examine the bodies of law and convention that might constrain anyone in the world from building that kind of system," he said. "But I’m wholly conscious of the fact that, even if we do that, there will be violators…"

Hopefully one of those violators will not be the Pentagon.

To participate in the discussion
log in or register
Заголовок открываемого материала