Michael Horowitz: DOD Eyes Release of Updated Directive on Autonomous Weapon Systems

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Michael Horowitz, director of the emerging capabilities policy office at the Department of Defense, said DOD could issue later this year its updated directive on autonomous weapons systems that takes into consideration advancements in artificial intelligence, Breaking Defense reported Thursday.

In 2012, the Pentagon issued the DOD Directive 3000.09 that outlined responsibilities, policy and review processes for designing, building and testing autonomous and semi-autonomous weapon platforms.

“Our instinct entering this process is that the fundamental approach in the directive remains sound, that the directive laid out a very responsible approach to the incorporation of autonomy and weapons systems,” Horowitz told the publication in an interview.

But we want to make sure, of course, that the directive still reflects the views of the department and the way the department should be thinking about [autonomous] weapon systems,” he noted. “You know, it has been a decade. And it’s entirely plausible that there are some updates and clarifications that would be helpful.”

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