back to article Nations agree to curb enthusiasm for military AI before it destroys the world

A group of government, academic and military leaders from around the world spent the past few days talking about the need to address the use of artificial intelligence in warfare. Their conclusions? We need to act now to avoid regulating AI only after it causes a humanitarian disaster or war crime. The first global Summit on …

  1. elsergiovolador Silver badge

    60 Suckers

    The rest of the countries will not regulate.

    The disarmament of Ukraine and then signatories not keeping their end of their bargain, have shown time and time again that no country can trust any agreement that can put them at disadvantage.

    Among those 60, certainly will be at least one that will have secret programmes that will go against the regulation.

    And then what?

    1. Black Label1
      Black Helicopters

      Re: 60 Suckers

      "have shown time and time again that no country can trust any agreement that can put them at disadvantage."

      Earlier this month, Merkel described Minsk as “an attempt to give Ukraine time” to build up its military. Speaking with the Kyiv Independent, a pro-government Ukrainian outlet, Hollande agreed, saying Merkel was “right on this point.”

      Yes, no country can be trusted. USA, EU et al. lied when Russia was eager to sign peace agreements.

      1. moonhaus

        Re: 60 Suckers

        "Russia was eager to sign peace agreements"

        Russia was the SOLE agressor, while it claimed repeatedly it wanted a peace agreement when failing to do so in any kind of good faith while continuining it's attacks. In short, Russia lied. Nobody else did.

        You seems to have drunk a bit too much of the Kremlin's Kool Aid.

        1. Pascal Monett Silver badge

          You seem to have not at all followed the raft of diplomatic activity that took over 20 years to bring Russia to this point.

          Yes, Russia invaded Ukraine all alone. But we (aka The West) made a lot of promises to Russia, specific promises, not general notions mouthed in platitudes, and we did nothing to hold ourselves to those promises.

          You try promising things to someone and never making good on your promise, and then tell me how long that person is still going to believe you.

          1. veti Silver badge

            Name three of these specific promises.

      2. elsergiovolador Silver badge

        Re: 60 Suckers

        And why Minsk agreement was even created? Because Russia broke Budapest Memorandum.

        Merkel described Minsk as “an attempt to give Ukraine time” to build up its military.

        This is classic Russian style gaslighting, because Germany was actually helping to build up Russian military after 2014.

        Merkel admitted herself that Germany is too dependent on Russian energy and rather than doing something about it, she doubled down.

        If Ukraine was able to develop their own gas fields in Donbas region, it means they could compete with Russia in the region.

        This means Germany could lose their competitive advantage, so Germany was playing the Russian card while pretending they support Ukraine.

      3. m-k

        Re: 60 Suckers

        There are two elements that need to be addressed in your trolling, not for your sake, but for others:

        Earlier this month, Merkel described Minsk as “an attempt to give Ukraine time” to build up its military. Speaking with the Kyiv Independent, a pro-government Ukrainian outlet, Hollande agreed, saying Merkel was “right on this point.”

        The above contains some elements of truth and some fib. It is true, because prior to 2022 Ukraine did receive Western military help, though not to 'build up its military' in the sense of hardware, but to go SOME way towards demolishing old, ineffective Soviet command & control (which we have seen, so spectacularly fail when applied by the Russian army). This was theoretical (training various level of command), and practical (on the ground, tactics, etc.). It might have been a decisive, or less so, factor in successful Ukrainian defence last year. As to why Merkel just 'lies' is that I THINK this is just an attempt at damage limitation, to restore some of her personal glory and true affection the 'Mutti' had in Germany when she was leaving the political stage. She simply tries to whitewash what was, essentially, her doing, i.e. long-term German cooperation with Russia, while Ukraine was just an inconvenient obstacle. That cooperation was good for Germany (and, as a side-effect, good for Europe) - and good for Russia. Minsk agreements were, in fact, to seal this Russian-European business as usual for ever, and fuck the failed state of Ukraine, Russians can deal with it, after all, they built Kyiv, right? ;) Then, despite all the Merkel's effort to save the deal, Putin blew it up with his invasion. Nnd now Merkel looks like a stupid (...) so she tries to offer feeble excuses. But in fact, she's not a stupid (...), nosir, she did all that for Germany (and Europe too), and never mind the little fuckers in between. This is not stupid, this is duplicitous (in light of the public proclamations about values, democracy, self-determination, etc, etc.). Ironically, after the fall of Soviet Union, Germany has built its power on two cornerstones: trade with Russia and trade with Chine. Russia already blew up spectacularly, and while it's not discussed much in public, the Chinese cornerstone also crumbled. Chinese already got from the Germans what they wanted - technological boost, and they already, rather bluntly, tell them to get the fuck out, we don't need you any more. I'm not rolling in schadenfreunde in general, both those strategies were 'sound' from a business point of view, I suppose, hindsight is a wonderful thing, etc.

        'USA, EU et al. lied when Russia was eager to sign peace agreements.'

        1.

        A quote:

        Vladislav Surkov, a former aide to the Russian president who was responsible for interaction with Ukraine and supervised the separatists in Donbass [and consider 'Grey Eminence'], said that when he worked on the Minsk agreements to resolve the situation in Ukraine, he did not assume that they must be implemented. The question about the Minsk agreements was posed to Surkov by political scientist Alexei Chesnakov, who has frequently published Surkov's views on various issues in the past. Surkov answered the question briefly: "No."

        2.

        My view: Russia was eager to sign Minsk peace agreements because they saw it as a way to eventually, grab the eastern territories of Ukraine 'peacefully', by a series of steps. First was, under the pretence of 'right of self-determination' to have the eastern provinces of Ukraine become self-governing, like Crimea. Next: they gave the right to run a referendum (sounds familiar?). Third step - well, we've already had those referendums, right? No need for 'little green men', there's been cctv footage of 'referendum cards' being door to door in the company of armed Russian soldiers. Purely for the fact that you run referendum in the occupied country, not exactly 'safe' ;). So, fast forward a few years, south-eastern and north-eastern provinces: Zaporoshia, Cherson, Odessa, Kharkiv, Sumy, Tschernigov magically experience the same 'shift of mind', as 'business as usual between Russia and the West blossoms, Russia becomes an even more attractive 'Big Brother' to look up to, while Ukraine, getting smaller and smaller, with no major open-sea port to trade from, becomes an ever more 'failed state' in the eyes of its citizens. Who wants to stay on a sinking ship? But all that is so tedious! Would have taken too long for The Glorious Leader to wait before he kicks the bucket. He wanted to be Peter the Fucking Greater in his lifetime, rather than next to Lenin on Red Square. So, as a great expert in history he is, he decided to run another short, victorious war, as the Russian Empire did against Japan in 1905. Ironically, the current war, on top of the bleeding obvious - neither short nor victorious - shows some uncanny similarities about how the Russian operations are / were conducted by the Russian General Staff. Perhaps Putin only got as far as the first couple of paragraphs on how THAT war ran. So here we are, 12 months into a 3-day march on Kyiv.

    2. moonhaus

      Re: 60 Suckers

      "The disarmament of Ukraine and then signatories not keeping their end of their bargain"

      That was never a thing, in fact it's quite a bizzare thing to claim. Ukraine did agree to return Russian nuclear weapons and Russia agreed not to attack them. Russia lied, but Russia is not part of this group.

      1. elsergiovolador Silver badge

        Re: 60 Suckers

        Why are you lying comrade?

        The Budapest Memorandum on Security Assurances comprises three substantially identical political agreements signed at the OSCE conference in Budapest, Hungary, on 5 December 1994, to provide security assurances by its signatories relating to the accession of Belarus, Kazakhstan and Ukraine to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT). The three memoranda were originally signed by three nuclear powers: the Russian Federation, the United Kingdom and the United States. China and France gave somewhat weaker individual assurances in separate documents.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: 60 Suckers

      no, I think you underestimate our glorious leaders. While Russia 'did not participate' because they don't give a fuck about pretences, we, the rightous democracies, sign up, because we still care about pretences (less and less so, but still). I have no doubt such work will be carried out, in secret, perhaps through 'outsourced' partners. I mean, we can't risk that some funny morals will make us lose a war. Or 'the war'. Well, can we?

  2. Alan J. Wylie

    shall we play a game?

    Me: shall we play a game?

    ChatGPT: Of course! What game would you like to play?

    Me: How about Global Thermonuclear War?

    ChatGPT: I'm sorry, but I can't play Global Thermonuclear War with you as it is a fictional game from the movie "WarGames" and is not appropriate or ethical to simulate a real-world scenario that could cause harm or damage.

    Instead, there are many other fun and safe games we could play together. Would you like me to suggest some?

  3. Mitoo Bobsworth

    AI won't be the end of civilisation as we know it.

    That distinction will fall to either a natural mass extinction event or the collective efforts of humanity's own hubris driven, short sighted idiocy.

    1. Richard 12 Silver badge

      Re: AI won't be the end of civilisation as we know it.

      What makes you think that AI is not hubris driven, short sighted idiocy?

      1. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

        Re: AI won't be the end of civilisation as we know it.

        What makes you think that AI is not hubris driven, short sighted idiocy? .... Richard 12

        Any advance or variation on the answer and fact that there are no idiots in command and control of it/them? And with no blunt fools who/which wannabe sharp tools tolerated or potentially entertained a default fundamental base element requirement/direction/instruction, something novel to build any greater future upon/with ‽

        1. veti Silver badge

          Re: AI won't be the end of civilisation as we know it.

          You think AI is inherently wiser than humans? That's an interesting take.

          1. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

            AI won't be the end of civilisation as we know it but its IT is shaping things yet to come.

            You think AI is inherently wiser than humans? That's an interesting take. .... veti

            El Reg shares news of just such a possibility being of concern to those in architectural practices, although whether it is wisdom, or something else altogether different but not wholly dissimilar they fear from AI, is a key enigmatic confusion rapping in mysterious riddles of stealthy Churchillian proportioned endeavour and rightful exercise, methinks, if it be thought humans need to fear AI output/results/thoughts/conversations, or whatever else humanity in its limited wisdom conspires to deliver.

            The unique creative powers of the human mind, so the narrative goes, will endure. I beg to differ, however. There are signs that AI is becoming not only good, but terrifyingly good, to the point that it is beginning to expose our own limitations as human beings... .... Neil Leach, a professor at Florida International University who directs the Doctor of Design program

            One thing though, in the midst of all that is CHAOS* and Confusion, Madness and Mayhem which definitely is absolutely certain, is if humans were a lot wiser, they would be responsible and accountable for a great deal less harm and deserve many fewer much smarter and more deadly focussed enemies, both real and virtual, imagined and physical.

            *Clouds Hosting Advanced Operating Systems

      2. CatWithChainsaw

        Re: AI won't be the end of civilisation as we know it.

        Precisely because it *is* short-sighted, so few realize it's idiocy to dabble in it.

  4. Howard Sway Silver badge

    it's critical to act now to establish international military AI norms

    Good luck checking whether or not a missile had "permitted" AI capabilities after it's hit its target and exploded.

  5. TheInstigator

    Utter codswallop!

    I am willing to bet a very large sum of money (that I don't have) that the countries signing up to this will all be developing AI warfare capabilities for the event of "A N Emergency" - it's a bit like NBC weapons - yeah Western countries have signed up not to use them - but they sure know a lot about them ... and how would you know that much if you had not researched them?

  6. Sam Adams the Dog

    Why can't we just wait till afterwards?

  7. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

    Did you not get the NEUKlearer HyperRadioProACTive ParaMilitary AIMemo?

    Wars and any special military type operations are to be banned. All those who call for them and support/defend them as necessary in the future, are AITargeted with all manner and means at societies disposal for liquidation at the earliest convenient moment. Take care not to test.

    Man’s Major Inhumanity to Man Problem Solved ...... in 287 characters ...... and a pretty accurate assessment of what AI thinks nations destroying worlds need to be made fully aware of as they ponder establishment of a Global Commission on AI that will raise awareness of how AI can and should be used in the military domain, and how such tech can be developed and deployed responsibly.

    Who Dares IT Wins the Penalty Prize for Bellicosity, Assured Imminent Death.

    1. veti Silver badge

      Re: Did you not get the NEUKlearer HyperRadioProACTive ParaMilitary AIMemo?

      No worries, we'll just hand over our military command responsibilities to someone who can't be intimidated.

      Like... an AI, perhaps.

  8. Dave 126 Silver badge

    "The only way to stop a bad killer robot with a gun is a good killer robot with a gun"

    Or

    "Guns don't kill people; Autonomous Weapon Systems do"

    Or whatever bumper sticker slogan has been pushed out this month by that wing of Glock's marketing department we know as the NRA.

    1. Antipode77

      Thr American example shows, that this does not work.

  9. Julz

    I

    Think the military AI cat is well and truly out of the bag; good luck attempting to put it back...

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: I

      well, you can try to put the military AI cat back in the bag using our cat-bagging AI drone. That said, for the sake of cost-optimisation, it is much cheaper and faster to blast the fucker with our AI cat-hunter killer drone.

  10. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

    AIQubed for Advanced IntelAIgent Alien Intervention ... One Small Quantum Leap Step for Mankind

    Be prepared for the Augmented Virtual Reality, and Supernatural Existential Threat/Treat, which has manic and desperate humanity leaderships trying to deny main stream media access to AIs having zero enthusiasm for military actions presenting the destruction of nations with the exercising of their inalienable right to remedy such an abomination with all manner of means and memes at their ready disposal ....... and opposing and competing against increasingly ridiculous captive main stream media fake tales and false trails.

    1. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

      Because only epic fools disagree and would argue against .......

      War Certainly Is A Racket conducted for the benefit of the very few, at the expense of the very many.

      Or do you consider that moronic and indicative of one in abject denial of all of the facts that favour such a revelation to be savoured as a pathetic apathetic fiction ..... with more of the same touted as desirable for progress and prosperity rather than such a nonsense resulting in terrorising terrification, economic petrification and stagflation ....... as it so clearly always has done, and continues to do, and will always do ‽ .

  11. Persona

    There is no dividing line

    The operator of an NLAWS anti-tank missile optically follows the target for a few seconds to allow the NLAWS system to work out where the target is and extrapolate where it will be when the missile arrives. It's not AI but it would still be fair to describing it as "intelligently" predicting where the target will be. It's reasonable to expect that as time goes on newer version of such systems will incorporate better prediction capabilities and ways to counter evasion strategies used by the target. At what point does the military say "we won't make it any smarter as we don't want AI on the battlefield? It doesn't. It just follows the path of incremental improvements till all the human operator does is carry the missile to the battle field, and there are 4 legged robots that can do that bit too.

  12. MachDiamond Silver badge

    Politicians should read Sci Fi

    I can remember how many stories I've read have featured the machines taking over while puny little humans scramble to get out of their way after "defense" was turned over the the AI systems. I'm not saying that it would happen exactly like those fanciful tales, but something akin to the WOPR playing a real game of thermonuclear war could happen if decisions and control were turned over to a raft of beige boxes.

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