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The Role of AI In Future Warfare

Big countries are not only measured by landmass anymore, they are measured by things such as economic power and most importantly military capability and might.

Russian Aggression towards Ukraine

Ukraine got invaded by Russia in the early hours of Thursday 24.02.2022, this trend is very disheartening because of the loss of lives and property which will bring a lot of instability to the European region. It is unacceptable to see seemingly big countries impose themselves on smaller countries. 

While this onslaught on Ukrainian targets by Russia continued for more than an hour, as an AI enthusiast, I could not help wondering about the percentage of this warfare that might be fought with the help of Artificial Intelligence.  

Isreal making groundbreaking research in AI artillery 

America continues to rank number one in the world in terms of its AI military capability but it is a country of 9.8 million people that is taking all the headlines and it is fair to see why.

With a population half the size of Lagos state Nigeria, it is astonishing to see how they have been able to move closer to the status of being called a world power.

Israeli Defence Force(IDF) Img Src: Times of Isreal


The Israeli Defence Force is at an impressive world ranking of 18 amongst 140 but this figure doesn’t even say the whole story.

Israel has adopted a new strategy for the use of artificial intelligence in its armed forces, according to a senior Israel Defense Forces official.

The new strategy was unveiled amid the AI Week 2022 three-day event at The Blavatnik Interdisciplinary Cyber Research Center and Tel Aviv Center for AI and Data Science at Tel Aviv University. The event included a session on the IDF’s new information and AI strategy.

A senior Israel Defense Forces official noted that the IDF is undergoing a digital transformation in dealing with AI in all its branches and commands. This will be the first time the IDF has a multi-branch and multi-command plan for use of AI.

For the IDF, the strategy is part of a belief that data and AI has a major role in winning future conflicts, processing the vast amount of data being generated by various sensors, transforming it into intelligible information and delivering it where it needs to go.

What AI Applications/Equipment Are Available For Warfare

Autonomous equipment has been a key part of warfare for years, but they’ve generally been remotely controlled by humans. Now, by cobbling together readily available image recognition and autopilot software, autonomous drones can be mass-produced on the cheap.

Robots rescuing wounded soldier | Image src: US Army

Below are some equipment that is already in use 

  1. Unmanned Combat vehicles 
  2. Military Robots
  3. Unmanned Aircraft Bombers
  4. Drones 

Today, efforts to enact a total ban on lethal autonomous weapons, long demanded by human rights activists, are now being supported by 30 countries. But the world’s leading military powers insist that isn’t necessary. The U.S. military says concerns are overblown, and humans can effectively control autonomous weapons, while Russia’s government says true AI weapons can’t be banned because they don’t exist yet.

But the facts on the ground show that technological advancements, coupled with complex conflicts like the Syrian and Libyan civil wars, have created a reality where weapons that make their own decisions are already killing people.

“The debate is very much still oriented towards the future,” said Ingvild Bode, an autonomous weapons researcher at the University of Southern Denmark. “We should take a much closer look at what is already going on.”

What is your take on the future of war with the rise of AI?

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