I start this blog-post with an empty mind, but I'm sure something will arise from the recesses of my brain... Ahhh here we go...
I was thinking about robotic warfare the other day. Robots have no compassion, and if one was ordered to kill, it would show no mercy - unless programmed to do so. This thought, although it seems quite obvious, has dire implications for the battles that will undoubtedly rage between humans for centuries to come.
Let me elaborate.
I was watching a film about the 1914 Christmas ceasefire in WWII. The picture illustrated how even in the hell of close combat warfare, in the cesspit of human wretchedness, kindness and peace can shine through. The heroes who participated in the numerous ceasefires on that fateful day, (and in the few days that followed in some cases) shared the common interest of self preservation. Caring about themselves and other people, rather than the lofty ideals and territorial gains in the psychotic minds of the masters of war.
The unfortunate souls, stuck on the fronts, showed that even when hope seems lost, and when death circles above, all it takes to regain some aspect of humanity is to lay down your weapon.
Robots wouldn't do that.
Modern drones show no compassion, no differentiation between victims and no humility. They kill (in some cases) indiscriminately. The future of warfare seems to be leaning towards robotic, apathetic androids, without the 'frailty' of self determination. It would seem that this is an attractive concept to those who play men like pawns, and gamble human lives at a whim.
An automated, weaponised unit which cannot look into the eyes of a cowering victim is useful , when cold-calculated murder is the goal. Humanity is surely descending into a period of ethical chaos, with these robotic beasts reigning havoc on populations world-wide. Maybe one day a code of ethics will be able to be programmed, morals micro-chipped or compassion coded. But until that day, have fear citizens of the Earth, death from above has no mercy!