The US Military Is Betting On “Smart” Drones — Lots And Lots Of Them

A conceptual drawing of DARPA’s “Gremlins” ARLINGTON, Virginia — In the Pentagon briefing room, filled with requisite overstuffed chairs surrounding a heavy wooden table, the future of drone warfare flashed on a large screen.The depiction wasn’t a single, ominous glider high over a training camp in Afghanistan, or another flashpoint in the long war on Al Qaeda. Instead it was dozens of synchronized drones, looking like a swarm of wasps, slicing through the layered air defenses of an enemy, unnamed but possibly China or Russia. Perhaps most alarming, those drones were “intelligent” — equipped with artificial intelligence software to do a lot of thinking, and fighting, without any human intervention.This is how the U.S. military envisions war 20 years from now. Since a CIA drone killed two Taliban guards on…


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