Saturday, October 16, 2021

Not Only Iron Dome, But Artificial Intelligence (AI) Ensured Israel’s Stupendous Success Against Hamas

In the recent conflict in Gaza, the Israeli Iron Dome systems hogged the limelight for successfully intercepting hundreds of rockets fired by Hamas. But a lesser-known fact is that it was for the first time the Jewish nation made the optimum use of artificial intelligence (AI) to locate and destroy targets.

Israel Says It Fought World’s First “Artificial Intelligence War” Against Hamas

The Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) deployed artificial intelligence (AI)-controlled drone swarms in the recent conflict. Thanks to AI, these swarm drones could continue their mission even if some drones were lost in action, Interesting Engineering reported.

For effective use of AI, information is collected from diverse sources, such as satellite data, other drones on surveillance missions as well as intelligence gathered by the ground units.

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After processing these multiple sets of information, the AI-enabled system helps identify targets and make predictions about the place and time where the enemy might attack. 

There were reports that in the recent conflict with Hamas, the Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) took the help of AI and supercomputers to locate and destroy targets. The IDF is believed to have used swarms of AI-guided drones as well as supercomputing to track data and locate targets in the Gaza Strip.

Drone-Swarm
For representational purpose only. (via Twitter)

The IDF reportedly used AI to identify suspected Hamas locations in the past two years. AI and supercomputing have also helped the IDF to conduct successful operations on missile launching sites of the Hamas.

The IDF states that the use of AI has effectively shortened the duration of fights, as the process of sifting through information becomes less time-consuming.

Unit 8200, a spy wing of the IDF, focuses on code decryption and signal intelligence and has been working on developing these algorithms. According to reports, the IDF used multiple algorithms prepared by Unit 8200 to identify strike targets based on topographical, human, and signal intelligence.

Once the targets were identified, orders were issued for conducting the strikes. However, the IDF is yet to release any specific details regarding the autonomous swarm attack.

However, not everyone is impressed with the increasing use of technology in warfare, especially in attacking human targets using unmanned weapons. 

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The New York-based Human Rights Watch began a campaign called ‘Stop Killer Robots’. Calling for a ban “on the development, production and use of fully autonomous weapons”, the organization coordinates the campaign globally.

According to HRW, the fully autonomous, AI-operated weapons do not meet the criteria set by international humanitarian law, and are seen as a threat to the “fundamental right to life and human dignity”.

The Campaign also identifies certain countries who are leading the race to bring technology into warfare, such as China, Israel, South Korea, Russia, and the UK. 

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