In the movie “Terminator” man creates his own nemesis “Sky Net” an artificially intelligent global security system that one day attains self-awareness, becoming an independent entity that views mankind as a threat. The global system begins attacking humanity and causing great disaster on an unprecedented scale. Humans are forced to go underground and use guerrilla warfare to survive while being relentlessly hunted by humanoid combat robots and “HK’s” (hunter killers), robotic hovering attack crafts that constantly seek out humans to destroy. These crafts are about the size of a helicopter.
As a result of breakthroughs in UAV’s (unmanned aerial vehicles) the US and other nations have created attack aircraft that are pilotless and can be remotely steered to a course and heading. Then they can observe, attack, loiter for hours, and return from their mission virtually unseen or undetected. The “Predator” series of military UAV’s have been used in the Middle East to hunt terrorists. Being smaller than jet fighters, they are hard to spot and hit with ground fire. Yet, a new technology has evolved from the UAV. It is the drone. Smaller, cheaper to deploy, easier to control and designed to fight with less casualties than using human pilots.
The nation of Israel has proven that these drones can be used effectively for reconnaissance, attack, and for even surgical strikes requiring very carefully inserted operations that minimize collateral fatalities, but is this really true? Massed swarms of drones operating autonomously with Artificial Intelligence to enable them to learn and distinguish between mission, changing circumstances, and who the good and bad guys are, has already been deployed against terrorist organizations like HAMAS, HEZBOLLAH, and the TALIBAN, but experts worry that this could lead to a “Sky Net” scenario where the drones are so autonomous they don’t need to take orders or will disregard commands.
Already out there
Already, a US Naval Destroyer was harassed by these small clustered groups of drones that caused a General Quarters alert! There have been also allegations of even smaller more stealthy attack drones known as “Killbots” used as assassination machines that can swarm, deliver small but deadly explosive charges, and can easily overwhelm their targets with sheer numbers while pursuing their victims. Although smaller than drones, they are agile, too quick for humans to defend against, and capable of delivering a devastating attack on a crowd of people, a single person, or even break into a structure in order to achieve a kill. Also acting under their own assessment of the situation, they don’t necessarily need any remote control after being programmed for a mission.
I have seen the enemy and it is us
These are the new “Hunter Killers” envisioned in “Terminator” more advanced, more accurate, and even more menacing like deadly wasps or hornets only made of metal with armament! Should thousands of these units be made cheaply and made available to all customers, the US just as the Middle East could be the scene of horrific anti-personnel attacks both civilian and military! Now add the self-controlled aspect to these deadly automatons that learn fast, and mankind would well have dug its own grave in the worship of technological advancement. Each and every time man innovates the battlefield, he increases his own chances of being on the receiving end of the carnage.