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We’ve Got Issues: The Ethics of Autonomous Weapons

In this episode of “We’ve Got Issues” I will be exploring the ethics of autonomous weapons. That’s right, we’re going to be talking about killer robots. For some time now, the military has been developing different types of autonomous technology, technology that carries out its function independent on any human controller. Some of the current uses of the this technology are IED detecting robots and signal jamming robots, each of which are fairly void of any controversy. In the coming years, though, we may see autonomous weapons being put to use. Take, for instance, killer drones, which may soon scour the skies and determine what to kill and what to leave alone, all without a human operator. These autonomous weapons offer a number of benefits, both for our army as a whole, and individual soldiers. The downsides, however, could turn out to be disastrous. In this episode of the podcast, I will be exploring both the pros and the cons of this technology. I am joined in this episode by expert of Just War Theory, and teacher of the course The Morality of Warfare here at KU, Jim Gilchrist.



Max Pozek’s Soundcloud: soundcloud.com/100012/tracks

Show Notes:

R&D SPENDING

https://defensesystems.com/articles/2015/02/05/military-services-r-and-d-budget-priorities.aspx

IBM WATSON

https://www.ibm.com/watson/stories/basketball-with-watson.html

DEFENSE DEPARTMENT, DRONE PTSD

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/02/23/us/drone-pilots-found-to-get-stress-disorders-much-as-those-in-combat-do.html

DRONE PILOT QUITTING EPIDEMIC

http://www.msnbc.com/morning-joe/watch/military–stress-causes-drone-pilots-to-quit-465912899604

NIXON AND THE DRAFT
http://www.politico.com/story/2012/01/us-military-draft-ends-jan-27-1973-072085

RWANDAN GENOCIDE

http://www.history.com/topics/rwandan-genocide

GOOGLE SELF DRIVING CAR
http://bigthink.com/ideafeed/googles-self-driving-car-is-ridiculously-safe

GOOGLE ACCIDENT

https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2016/sep/26/google-self-driving-car-in-broadside-collision-after-other-car-jumps-red-light-lexus-suv

DRONE COLLATERAL DAMAGE

https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2016/03/the-obama-administrations-drone-strike-dissembling/473541/