Center for American Progress

Artificial intelligence: Challenges and controversies for U.S. national security
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Artificial intelligence: Challenges and controversies for U.S. national security

Stephen J. Cimbala and Lawrence J. Korb write about the implications of artificial intelligence for national security.

Artificial intelligence (AI) has recently taken center stage in US public policy debates. Corporate technical experts and some public officials want to declare a temporary moratorium on AI research and development. Their concerns include the possibility that artificial intelligence will increase in capability faster than human controllers’ ability to understand or control.

An autonomous AI technology that equaled or surpassed human cognition could redefine how we understand both technology and humanity, but there is no surety as to whether or when such a “superintelligence” might emerge. Amid the uncertainty, the United States and other countries must consider the possible impact of AI on their armed forces and their preparedness for war fighting or deterrence. Military theorists, strategic planners, scientists and political leaders will face at least seven different challenges in anticipating the directions in which the interface between human and machine will move in the next few decades.

The above excerpt was originally published in Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists. Click here to read the article.

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Stephen J. Cimbala

Distinguished Professor of Political Science

Lawrence J. Korb

Senior Fellow


National Security and International Policy

Advancing progressive national security policies that are grounded in respect for democratic values: accountability, rule of law, and human rights.

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