Gaza: Israel’s army has deployed some AI-enabled military technology in combat for the first time in Gaza, raising fears about the use of autonomous weapons in modern warfare.
The rising civilian death toll shows much greater oversight is needed over the use of new forms of defence tech, said Mary Wareham, an arms expert at Human Rights Watch. “Now we’re facing the worst possible situation of death and suffering that we’re seeing today – some of that is being brought about by the new tech.”
In a first, the Israeli army has used an AI-enabled optic sight, made by Israeli startup Smart Shooter, which is attached to weapons such as rifles and machine guns.
“It helps our soldiers to intercept drones because Hamas uses a lot of drones,” an unnamed defence official told AFP news agency. “It makes every regular soldier — even a blind soldier — a sniper.”
More than 150 countries in December backed a UN resolution identifying “serious challenges and concerns” in new military tech, including “artificial intelligence and autonomy in weapons systems”.