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Lethal Autonomous Weapons: Take the Human Out of the Loop

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Technical Report

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Naval War College Newport United States

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Lethal Autonomous Weapons Take the Human Out of the Loop. The United States government needs to develop and employ lethal autonomous weapons LAWS on the battlefield. There are two main arguments that this paper will explore first, robots are potentially more proficient than humans on the battlefield and second, the United States needs to employ LAWS because other countries already are and the US needs to set the international example. Humans are inferior to robots in warfare and this paper will discuss historical examples in which humans exercised poor judgment in battle or were incapable of deciding due to the effects of combat. Humans are more expensive than robots and this paper show the economic benefits of employing LAWS. As a superpower, the US needs to develop and employ LAWS to establish international norms and be prepared to propose international agreements. The US is one of two countries that has a policy regarding LAWS and it is vague and over five years old. This paper describes the other countries that are currently developing and employing LAWS. Removing the human from the loop is an under represented argument because of legitimate concerns to include lowering the bar to entry to war, violating human dignity, and hacking. This study explores and ultimately refutes these concerns. Ultimately, the most important reason why LAWS should be adopted is that they will save lives.

Subject Categories:

  • Cybernetics

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