Mason Smithers is a student of robotics and aviation. He has taken part in building and programming robots for various purposes and is seeking a career as a pilot.
Jason Criss Howk is an adjunct professor of national security and Islamic studies and was Mason’s guest instructor during the COVID-19 quarantine.
Divergent Options’ content does not contain information of an official nature nor does the content represent the official position of any government, any organization, or any group.
National Security Situation: The deployment of robots on the battlefield raises many questions for nations that desire to do so.
Author and / or Article Point of View: This paper is based on the assumption that robots will one day become the predominant actor on a battlefield, as AI and robotics technology advance. The authors believe it is the moral duty of national and international policy-makers to debate and establish the rules for this future now.
Background: Robots on the battlefield in large quantities, where they make up the majority of the combatants making direct-contact with a nation’s enemies, will raise new concerns for national leaders and human rights scholars. Whether they are tethered to a human decision-maker or not, when robots become the primary resource that a nation puts at risk during war, there will be an avalanche of new moral and ethical questions to debate.