Lesson 10: The Dangers of Artificial Intelligence

collaborationBefore addressing Ira’s observation that society– and we ourselves– are talking about many different understandings of artificial intelligence, I’d like to look at important recent events while they are fresh in our minds. They clearly contrast the present state of human and artificial intelligence in a way that highlights the contributions and threats of AI.

Iran’s massive attack against Israel on April 13 showcased AI’s tremendous power. Although human intelligence decided to strike, artificial intelligence launched and guided 170 drones, 120 surface-to-surface ballistic missiles, and 30 cruise missiles. Even more impressive, Israel and its allies used incredible artificial intelligence to intercept and shoot down almost every last one of them.

Not even one ground troop engaged in combat. The only casualty was a 10-year-old child who was struck by shrapnel from one of the intercepted missiles.

It was possible to follow the battle minute by minute on television. However, this magnificent achievement was not newsworthy enough to be aired on the major channels, which proceeded with their usual reality TV programming.

It is obvious in the present moment that artificial intelligence instills in us a sense of tremendous security. Nonetheless, fast-forward only a few years and consider Iran placing nuclear warheads on the missiles. Fast-forward a little more and consider AI given the decision about whether to launch. Suddenly, artificial intelligence becomes a threat.

However, it is not necessary to go into the future. While providing security, AI has also created dangers in the present. Guerrilla warfare has become the strategy of weak parties that cannot afford the expense of AI, and terrorism has become the tactic that leads to success. Indeed, if terrorism is defined as the killing of innocent civilians, it is a common element in all forms of modern warfare.

Hamas employed the brutality of rape and the violence of murder in its October 7th attack that eventually led to the aerial battle. And Israel responded with actions that threatened genocide.

Good and bad human judgment was involved in all of this. We also saw artificial intelligence, which is efficient rather than good and evil. Good human intelligence used AI as a beneficial tool in Israel’s attack on the Iranian embassy in Syria and in her response to the aerial attack that sent a few missiles narrowly targeting an army base in Iran.

Good is defined as trying to observe the cultural values of the traditional just war theory to some degree. This is increasingly difficult because AI is indifferent to culture, creating a situation of constant warfare. That has always justified putting aside cultural values for the duration.

Culture tries to check the destructive aspects of human nature. It advocates an eye for an eye rather than ongoing vengeance. If uncivilized human nature threatens, “You strike us, and we shall kill all of you.” Culture calls for “You kill one of us, and we shall kill one of you.” As sophisticated as AI seems, by diminishing the role of culture, it leaves us with some barbaric practices. Of course, Christianity advocates practicing forgiveness to break the unending cycle of violence. Considering modern technology’s power, human intelligence might see this as a good idea.

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  1. Ira Gensemer says:

    Too much of the news is written by people without much life experience and we pay too much attention to them Many see themselves as philosophers. They all want to run the country but have never done the dirty work required to develop the country. AI is going to help business and manufacturing and it sure is helping to protect us from the enemy! lots of people are living better because of AI. We are in a different kind of war called asymmetric warfare. Some people seem to have a problem understanding what is in our National Interest and the media isn’t helping.


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