Countries around the world are pouring billions of dollars into developing autonomous weapons systems—weapons that are equipped with predictive, decision-making abilities, courtesy of artificial intelligence.
Proponents of autonomous weaponry argue that they will keep soldiers out of harm’s way by keeping them off the battlefield, says Justin Haner, a doctoral candidate at Northeastern University who studies autonomous weapons systems. But he thinks the argument is short-sighted. A country with an increasingly robotic arms force might send those machines into conflicts that it would not send human soldiers, Haner says.
Haner works with Denise Garcia, who is an associate professor of political science and international affairs and who sits on the International Committee for Robot Arms Control. Haner and Garcia recently published a paper that examines trends in the development of autonomous weapons by countries around the world.
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