It seems that robots are taking over, and this fact is a reality, which cannot be ignored. For example, in Iraq, the deployment of robots, which are armed for battle, has taken place. Magic has not been used when developing robots, but rather technology, which shows the imagination of human beings. At the same time, the invention of robots ignores vital issues such as morality and ethics. Also, there are no considerations on matters such as rules of war and use of force. In other realism apart from war, change is accepted, and this notion needs to be changed. In turn, many governments are now aware of the importance of robots and thus use them for their own advantage. The American military is constantly being criticized, as it is using machines to carry out unconscious killing of human beings. On the other hand, some believe that, through the use of robots, the troops will be protected (Sharkey, 2007).
This is a dangerous path, which is being taken, and thus should be handled delicately. Scientists are entering into the world with boldness, as they have invented robots, which are capable of killing. Other countries have followed the direction, and path of the United States, and they include; Israel and South Korea. The two countries are protecting their borders through the use of robot guards. Also, the United Kingdom and Singapore have military robots, which are being used for various purposes. It cannot be denied that the United States is the largest player in matters that concern robots. Moreover, as much as 230 billion dollars is expected to be invested in the American project on combat systems. The project seeks to develop vehicles that are unmanned, and have the ability of striking on land, sea as well as on air (Sharkey, 2007).
The American congress hopes that, by the year 2015, the number of American combat vehicles will increase. In Afghanistan and Iraq, there are 4000 robots that have been deployed and they are armed heavily. The robots serve as human fighter’s extensions and they use lethal force while in combat. An example is the MQ-1 Predator, which vaporized Al-Qaida suspects, who were in a car, in the year 2002. The robot used hellfire missiles to vaporize them, despite the fact that the pilots were extremely far. Many civilians have lost their lives as the result of the missions carried out by Reaper Robots and the Predators. Some people believe that the robots are not being used in an ethical manner, and they prefer the use of air strikes, which are traditional (Sharkey, 2007).
It is possible for robots that are fully autonomous to make decisions on their own, but this is not in line with the American agenda. According to the US National Research Council, there is a need to research further on the use of autonomous vehicles. They have the capability of bringing about benefits during war. Furthermore, the autonomous vehicles only need few personnel, and they are manufactured cheaply. The navy believe that the robots have the ability to perform in missions that are quite complex. In fact, whether a soldier is on the ground or air, they can conduct attacks through the aid of large scale robots. Unfortunately, ethical guidelines, and codes do not exist, and this is extremely dangerous when dealing with matters that concern warfare. In matters, that concern human termination and the robots are the ones who make the decision, it becomes terrifying. The latter is a disappointment even though it is known that policy makers are often individuals who are well educated. They have knowledge on matters that concern myth and science fiction (Sharkey, 2007).
According to an American Navy document that was presented, the issue on robots is critical. There is a need to find out about the target’s legality also, about the autonomous systems. The Navy often defends itself by claiming that robots should fight other robots, and human beings to do the same on their species. This is not true as when robots have weapons, and they are pin pointing, they cannot differentiate between non weapons and weapons. For example, a robot can easily terminate a girl who offers it ice cream because it cannot differentiate. Furthermore, malicious people may take advantage and trick the robots and in turn, end up killing civilians who are innocent. In order to evade being criticized by the opposition, the government is engaging in extensive robot research. It wants to come up with a project that will ensure that robots have a conscience. In turn, they will carry out and make decisions, which are ethical (The Daily Galaxy, 2007).
It should be known that such a project is extremely difficult, and a lot of work and research has to take place. Robots will never have the ability to differentiate between school children or enemy soldiers on a bus. Moreover, the matter concerning ethics is one that will never be achieved as human beings are unique. The use of robots is a way of blaming them for mistakes done by human beings. There are many differences, which exist between robots and human soldiers. The latter is guided by the Geneva Convention, which gives them legal protocols to adhere. On the other hand, autonomous robots have laws that guide them on matters that concern use of standard weapons and armed conflict laws (Isenberg, 2009).
Robots are also used in other sectors, and they are extremely beneficial in many ways. For example, manufacturers have developed robots, which can be used for playing by children. Many children today prefer toys, which are mechanized, as opposed to traditional toys. The health sector has also benefited from robots, especially in delicate heart operations. The robots have in turn saved many people from losing their lives, due to their exceptional abilities. This means that the reality of robots taking over the world should not be ignored. At the same time, a lot needs to be done to ensure that they do not take over humans, as the latter are special (Isenberg, 2009).
In conclusion, it should be known that autonomous robots are highly differentiated from weapons. It is not a worthy decision to give machines the mandate to decide on matters that concern human fatality. As technology becomes easy and prices fall, most likely there will be an arms race for robots. In turn, people will find it difficult to stop. There is a need to solve this matter before it escalates any further as it is currently. An ethics code and international legislation has to be created before time runs out. Indeed, robots are a reality and not science fiction as it has been witnessed (Sharkey, 2007).
Isenberg, David. (2009). The coming robot wars. Asia Times. Retrieved from http://atimes.com/atimes/South_Asia/KF13Df01.html
Robot Wars –a Reality. (2007). The Daily Galaxy. Retrieved from http://www.dailygalaxy.com/my_weblog/2007/08/robot-wars-a-re.html
Sharkey, Noel. (2007). Robot wars are a reality. The Guardian. Retrieved from http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2007/aug/18/comment.military
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