Military Futures: Aerial Kamikaze Explosive Drones

Robots aren’t just going to take our jobs. They could change how wars are fought in the years to come.

“Imagine a low-cost drone with the range of a Canada goose, a bird that can cover 1,500 miles in a single day at an average speed of 60 miles per hour. Planet Earth profiled a single flock of snow geese, birds that make similar marathon journeys, albeit slower. The flock of six-pound snow geese was so large it formed a sky-darkening cloud 12 miles long. How would an aircraft carrier battlegroup respond to an attack from millions of aerial kamikaze explosive drones that, like geese, can fly hundreds of miles? A single aircraft carrier costs billions of dollars, and the United States relies heavily on its ten aircraft carrier strike groups to project power around the globe. But as military robots match more capabilities found in nature, some of the major systems and strategies upon which U.S. national security currently relies – perhaps even the fearsome aircraft carrier strike group – might experience the same sort of technological disruption that the smartphone revolution brought about in the consumer world.”

First of all, I had no idea Canadian Geese could fly so far, so fast. Impressive!


This is honestly what scares me about nations like China and Russia investing so heavily in Artificial Intelligence. And, why smaller nations with growing military budgets and hundreds of thousands of factory workers churning out products, like cell phones and drones, at the speed of light, could make an impact sooner than we think. They could eventually wield power, that we as an increasingly passive, Instagram scrolling nation, will be completely blindsided by.

This interview with historian Alfred McCoy by Jeremy Scahill on the Intercepted podcast didn’t ease my anxieties about the path these United States could find itself venturing down in a future nearer than we might expect.

Truth is, the reality of it all is very possible.


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