Killer robots are real, and soon Russia and China will have access to the deadly technology. The two countries are creating highly autonomous weapons, and their work is putting pressure on the United States military to keep up.
According to United States Deputy Secretary of Defense Robert Work, Russia and China are both investing heavily into the creation of robot armies. These armies will be able to act autonomously and aggressively attack anyone who is considered to be an enemy.
Work stated, “We know that China is already investing heavily in robotics and autonomy and the Russian Chief of General Staff (Valery Vasilevich) Gerasimov recently said that the Russian military is preparing to fight on a roboticized battlefield. Gerasimov said, and I quote, 'In the near future, it is possible that a complete roboticized unit will be created capable of independently conducting military operations.'"
According to Work, it is critical that the United States “dominate” machine learning and artificial intelligence in order to counter the imposing threats of Russia and China.
Experts of artificial intelligence have long been concerned about the creation of killer robots. More than 1,000 AI researchers have co-signed an open letter that is calling for the ban of autonomous weapons. The letter has been signed by many prominent individuals, including Tesla CEO Elon Musk and physicist Stephen Hawking.
Last week, Musk announced the creation of a brand new nonprofit research organization called OpenAI. The goal of OpenAI is to improve digital intelligence in a way that will benefit humanity as a whole. Musk will serve as the co-chairperson of OpenAI.
However, with Russia and China making major advancements in the possible creation of a dangerous robotic army, many people will question the future of AI and whether or not such military technology should be allowed.
In October, the deputy director general of a Russian defense contractor Vyacheslav Khaitov stated that Russian prototypes of autonomous combat robots would be ready to be presented within the next two years.