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U.S Military To Use Robots As Soldiers In Battlefield

Source: pointblanknews.com
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The Pentagon is considering replacing thousands of troops with robots, a

military commander said recently, marking the first time a DOD official

has publicly acknowledged that humans would be replaced with robots on the

battlefield.
Gen. Robert Cone, head of the Army Training and Doctrine Command, made the

comment at the Army Aviation symposium on Jan. 15, according to a report

in Defense News, a trade publication covering the military. He said that

robots would allow for “a smaller, more lethal, deployable and agile

force.”'
“I've got clear guidance to think about what if you could robotically

perform some of the tasks in terms of maneuverability, in terms of the

future of the force,” Cone said.
DOD did not respond to a request for comment on Cone's remarks.

Cone also said that one-quarter of a 4,000 troop Brigade Combat Team could

be replaced by robots or drones. His announcement comes as the entire

Pentagon is shrinking, including troop reductions. DOD officials have said

that the size of the force would shrink from 540,000 to 450,000 by 2020.

The Pentagon and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA)

have been aggressively pursuing robot technology. DOD has already invested

billions of dollars with companies like Boston Dynamics, now owned by

Google, to develop the technology.
So far, the company has developed the AlphaDog robot, designed to haul

heavy military equipment for soldiers. Last year alone, DOD spent $7

million on the Avatar Program, which is attempting to find a way to upload

a soldier's consciousness to a robot. It also spent $11 million on a

program that is developing robots that act autonomously.

These robots, combined with the already widespread use of drones and

robots to detect bombs, are prompting fears that the human element would

be removed from combat. Human Rights Watch and the Campaign to Stop Killer

Robots, an international coalition concerned that robots could replace

humans, have launched preemptive campaigns to ban their use.

If more advanced robots are used in battle, it would be years down the

line. Lt. Gen. Keith Walker told Defense News that widespread use of

robots could not occur until the “deep future” – sometime between 2030 and

2040.
“We'll need to fundamentally change the nature of the force, and that

would require a breakthrough in science and technology,” he said.

The Fiscal Times