Posted by: canaryinacoalmine | January 24, 2005

Virtual WAR

‘Robot soldiers’ bound for IraqBBC NewsSunday, 23 January 2005

The US military is planning to deploy robots armed with machine-guns to wage war against insurgents in Iraq. Eighteen of the 1m-high robots, equipped with cameras and operated by remote control, are going to Iraq this spring, the Associated Press reports. The machine is based on a robot already used by the military to disable bombs.Officials say the robot warrior is fast, accurate and will track and attack the enemy with relatively little risk to the lives of US soldiers.Unlike its human counterparts, the armed robot does not require food, clothing, training, motivation or a pension. When not needed in war, it can be mothballed in a warehouse. A US officer who helped test the robot said it was a more accurate shot than the average soldier because it is mounted on a stable platform and takes aim electronically.

There are plans to replace the computer screen, joysticks and keypad in the remote-control unit with a Gameboy-style controller and virtual-reality goggles.

Remove the reality of war from the mind and make the experience a little more “virtual”. This will make slaughtering another 100,000 Iraqis less painful for the soldiers at the controls of these robots, if indeed they are capable of feeling pain for another human being.

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