Artificial Intelligence Warfare

In wartime, hiding your “battle plan” from the enemy is vitally important.

The famed Chinese military strategist Sun Tzu knew the importance of concealing his long-term war strategy, and wrote: “All men can see these tactics whereby I conquer, but what none can see is the strategy out of which victory is evolved.”

For over two millennia, generals have studied Sun Tzu’s writings in hopes of being able to “outmaneuver” their enemies. But what happens when computers start producing “strategies too complex for a person to comprehend”?

Ever since a supercomputer “beat” the legendary chess master Garry Kasparov in 1997, strategist have pondered the military applications of “artificial intelligence” algorithms.

Unlike natural intelligence, which involves consciousness, emotion and the ability to make original choices, artificial intelligence makes preprogrammed decisions based on the variables fed into the machine. But the sheer number of variables a machine-learning algorithm can process is vast beyond what a human mind can comprehend.

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That is why the “United States Army War College” is studying how artificial intelligence may change warfare by generating battle strategies too complex for a single human mind to comprehend. “I’m not talking about killer robots,” said Prof. Andrew Hill in 2019, during the War College’s first-ever chair of strategic leadership. “The issue is what happens once humans start taking military advice—or even orders—from machines.”

When machine-learning algorithms start producing war strategies, will soldiers trust a computer to guide their moves like a driver following a satellite-based navigation system? Or will they reject the potential for a superhuman cyber battle strategy in favor of reliance on some other type of guidance system?

In its quest to remain the world’s superpower, the United States has invested a lot of money into artificial intelligence programs. But America may not remain the world leader in artificial intelligence for long.

China’s State Council announced in 2017 that it intended to lead the world in artificial intelligence by 2030, and China is already filing more artificial intelligence patents than any other country. In 2019, there were 1,189 artificial intelligence research firms in China, about half as many as in the United States, but more than any other nation. Many of these firms specialize in speech, image, and video recognition technology, since China uses artificial intelligence as a dystopian tool of mass surveillance as well as a military tool.

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On the military front, Chinese artificial intelligence research largely revolves around the development of automated weapons systems. And its technological progress has both the United States and European Union deeply concerned. “Strategically, both the U.S. and the EU are concerned about China, so they need a tech policy that acknowledges a very aggressive position that China has taken in AI,” Marc Rotenberg, director of the Center on AI and Digital Policy at the Michael Dukakis Institute, revealed.

Elected officials from both sides of the Atlantic Ocean met at an EU parliamentary hearing to lay the groundwork for future cooperation against China. “Nations that do not share our commitment to democratic values are racing to be the leaders in AI and set the rules for the world,” said Rep. Robin Kelly, who has championed U.S. national strategy on artificial intelligence. “We cannot allow this to happen.”

At the same time, the “U.S. National Security Commission on Artificial Intelligence” released a report emphasizing that America needs to work with Europe to invest in AI research essential to defense against China.

Speaking at the Munich Security Conference, Joe Biden announced that the “trans-Atlantic alliance is back.” Yet America may come to regret trusting Europe.

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Granted the EU has the technological capacity to stand toe-to-toe with China. The Italian defense contractor Leonardo S.p.A. is building the world’s largest AI supercomputer, dubbed Davinci-1.

Yet the U.S. and Europe are at odds over some thorny issues, such as how to transfer data across borders and how to tax Big Tech companies like Google and Facebook.

According to a survey released by the European Council on Foreign Relations, most Europeans believe China will soon replace America as the world’s “single most powerful nation.”

This means that data-sharing plans between the U.S. and Europe may only empower Europe as a rival power bloc, and joint investment projects may only make Europe that much stronger!

Maria Zack, the founder of the nonprofit government watchdog agency “Nations in Action”, is alleging that Leonardo S.p.A. may have uploaded advanced algorithms to military satellites to steal the United States presidential election. And this is only one example of the type of AI warfare that is possible.

A defense contractor with an AI supercomputer could easily start generating advanced battle strategies. We are still in the midst of the AI revolution, so the average citizen does not even know what is possible yet.

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American military strategists acknowledge that they may not be able to beat China in an artificial intelligence war on their own. But instead of turning to God for guidance, they are turning to European computing systems that may have already been used to steal an American election.

Building up the European Union and Germany is one of the most foolish decisions America is making. They will soon find out the hard way that these foreign allies do not have their best interests at heart.

Artificial intelligence may go rogue in war

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