Fox News on February 7, 2014, in an article by Meaghan Murphy reported on the robotic future of warfare. Gen. Robert Cone, head of the U.S. Army’s Training and Doctrine Command, acknowledged recently that robotic warfare is coming, explaining that the Army is working toward becoming “a smaller, more lethal, deployable and agile force” by replacing soldiers with robots and unmanned platforms. Excerpts below:

“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 last month at the Army Aviation Symposium in Arlington, Va.

“There are functions in the brigade that we could automate — robots or manned/unmanned teaming — and lower the number of people that are involved, given the fact that people are our major cost.”

Fox News Insider on January 24, 2014, also treated the subject:

Robots could replace one-fourth of U.S. combat soldiers by 2030, according to Gen. Robert Cone.

The Army already employs robotic warriors in limited activities. editor-in-chief Lance Ulanoff joined Bill Hemmer on America’s Newsroom to discuss the idea.

“I think … the long-term vision is to really take people, humans, out of harm’s way and let a full-blown robot do the fighting, do the shooting, do the running,” Ulanoff said, noting that he doesn’t see that happening until near the end of the century.

Ulanoff told Hemmer about some of the robotic technologies that already exist today.

Gen. Stanley McChrystal,however, the former commander of U.S. forces in Afghanistan, warned about the ethical concerns of automated warfare as reported in the Daily Telegraph of London.

“There’s a danger that something that feels easy to do and without risk to yourself, almost antiseptic to the person shooting,” said McChrystal told the BBC’s “Today” show. “And so if it lowers the threshold for taking operations because it feels easy, there’s danger in that.”


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