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Tuesday, January 22, 2008

"Come with me if you want to live..."

It's no secret that I support Israel. I always have. I don't stand with the left in thinking that Israel should give up land for peace. They've done that all along and it never works.

I firmly and fully believe in the right of Israel to defend herself against the constant onslaught that they face. Every nation should have that right, no body of nations (re: the United Nations or the Arab League) should denounce a single nation for standing in defense of her citizenry.

NO OTHER NATION ON THIS EARTH would stand for years of attacks the way Israel has done and not go full throttle after their attackers.

That being said.

Remember the Terminator movie series? Arnold as a terminator cyborg from the future chasing after John Connor to kill him because he was the future savior of humanity in the first one, then sent back as a SECOND cyborg in the second and third movies to protect him from other terminator cyborgs. In the movies, the machines had risen to destroy humanity after becoming "self-aware" and determining that mankind had had our day.

Science fiction writers have often included the use of cyborgs and androids or other intelligent sophisticated systems in their writings. Be it the Robot from Lost in Space, Mr. Data from the Star Trek saga, HAL from 2001, or the Terminator himself (or my personal favorite, Tricia Helfer's Cylon character on the new Battlestar Galactica series), science fiction has blended the interaction of man and machine into our minds as common place in future society.

The future may be closer than we had expected.

Israel has announced plans to begin implementation of artificial intelligence systems into it's air defense network.

Israeli military leaders have begun early planning for a new, robotic defense system
, armed with enough artificial intelligence that it "could take over completely" from flesh-and-blood operators. "It will be designed for... autonomous operations,' Brig. Gen. Daniel Milo, commander of Israel's air defense forces, tells Defense News' Barbara Opall-Rome. And in the event of a "doomsday" strike, Opall-Rome notes, the system could handle "attacks that exceed physiological limits of human command."

Current air defense systems have automatic tracking systems that will allow the weapon to acquire a target and then a human has to make the determination to fire it. This sort of system would take the human element out of the equation and make the weapon totally automatic and rely on artificial intelligence to make the decision of when and if to fire, other than one incident in South Africa in October where 9 were killed in an accident involving an automated weapons system.

Or had it become "self-aware?"

Definitely something to ponder, I think.

Once and Always, an American Fighting Man