US Army has decided to change how it operates and wishes to transform in to ‘a smaller, more lethal, deployable, and agile force.’ How do they plan on accomplishing that? It is quite simple; they are going to make use of robots. Seeing the global nature of US Army operations, we would say that this transition is more than necessary if US Army wishes to survive.
Last week at the Army Aviation Symposium, Head of the Army’s Training and Doctrine Command; General Robert Cone talked about the future of US Army. Keeping in view the budget cuts, the US government is already considering to reduce the size of army. This difference will be compensated by robots and systems that are unmanned. As expected from the US Army, they have already been carrying out tests related to possibility of combat drones.
General Cone said on the occasion: ‘When you see the success, frankly, that the Navy has had in terms of lowering the numbers of people on ships, are there functions in the brigade that we could automate—robots or manned/unmanned teaming—and lower the number of people that are involved given the fact that people are our major cost?’
This idea is neither hypothetical nor just a ‘new’ idea; rather it has been in the pipeline for quite some time now. However, the actual process of adding robots to the army and reducing the number of soldiers is not an easy one. Nowadays, the robot technology has evolved to a level where this can finally be done practically. DARPA has already been putting great efforts into it. The other issue is the ethical issue where the Army officials have to back up their idea of cutting down on humans while adding robots. Let’s see how this all goes!