Tuesday, October 25, 2011

War is Still Human, Damn It!

Christian Science Monitor has a fascinating report on what could be the future of warfare. Really cool read available here: http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Military/2011/1022/Unmanned-drone-attacks-and-shape-shifting-robots-War-s-remote-control-future

Although the article points out many fascinating innovations with robotics and weaponry, I’d like to keep in mind that war is still going to be a largely human enterprise with factors that even our greatest technological advantages can’t account for.

That is perhaps the greatest take-away from the original execution of the Iraq War. Rumsfeld among others was looking towards the future of war, with smaller forces and a greater reliance on technology and contractors.  Eventually, we went back to a more conventional force structure with the added technological components.

I think anything that has the potential to put less soldiers in harms way is a victory for humanity. However, war is a bloody business and there will still be death, no matter how good the technology gets. If one needs a proof of this point, consider the discontent that the NATO night raids in Afghanistan has caused.

The problem with technology is that it is controlled by humans, and humans are not perfect. The technology can and will commit errors if its’ overlords make a mistake in its’ programming, coordinate information, or any number of untold variables. Humans make war, not robots.

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