AI Weapons: China and America Are Desperate to Dominate This New Technology
Earlier this month Chinese supreme leader Xi Jinping met with senior military scientists as chairman of the all-powerful Central Military Commission.
During the meeting, the Chinese leader was photographed at the PLA Academy of Military Sciences shaking hands with Major General Li Deyi, a leading authority on artificial intelligence, or AI, and a key figure in the Chinese military’s effort to overtake the United States in the emerging field of advanced weapons.
The meeting between Xi and the military experts garnered little public attention.
But within US intelligence agencies closely monitoring rival China, the attention given by Xi to Li was the latest sign of the growing importance Beijing places on rapidly building autonomous weapons – robotic arms capable of thinking and acting at the speed of light.
The Chinese military quest for integrating AI into its tanks, naval forces and aircraft is the part of China’s asymmetric or “assassin’s mace” warfare strategy – building high-technology arms that will enable China’s weaker forces to defeat the more powerful military of the United States in any future conflict.
Two years ago Xi spoke to the Central Military Commission and called on it to move ahead with fusing advanced technologies like big data, cloud computing and AI for the Communist Party’s People’s Liberation Army.
PLA Lieutenant General Liu Guozhi, the director of China’s Science and Technology Commission, has said AI is fundamentally changing how militaries wage war.