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Robots in War
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Look, I'm a technological optimist, but I recognize that with every benefit of an innovation there comes the potential for abuse. No technological breakthrough is a free lunch, in other words.

You discover how to split an atom, can power a city. You learn how to build a good enough rocket, and you can go to the moon.

But those same two discoveries can be used to construct an ICBM that can fly from continent to continent and reduce a metropolis into a radioactive heap of bodies and slag.

Scientists can be hopeful...they shouldn't be naive.

So here's this article on using robots in war, from the Washington Post. And it says this:

An unmanned Stryker is part of the military's effort to move more machines into battle to save both money and lives. "Well before the end of the century, there will be no people on the battlefield," said Robert Finkelstein, a professor at the University of Maryland's School of Management and Technology.

Now let's not kid ourselves, please. We're interested in saving our lives, but in taking those of the enemy more quickly, efficiently, and in greater numbers.

And this business about there being no people on the battlefied by the end of the century is bullshit. There will always be people on the battlefield, because the battlefield is always going to be where somebody lives. The richer, more technologically-advanced country may not have human soldiers on the field of battle, but the poorer one most likely will. And unless we get to the point where countries airlift their robotic armies to some deserted island, or the arctic, to fight it out in sterile seclusion, there are going to be people around, and some of those people are going to die.

I suppose these are the things that people who work on weapons systems tell themselves to be able to sleep better at night.

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