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Military warfare is changing at an incessant pace. The integration of technology in military space has been a key factor in the new realm of warfare. Though there are many advantages of using technological tools as a combat weapon, such as removing human interfere in military combats, the threats are complex and diverse, from the inability to respond and the enormous destruction of technological weapons.

Cyberwarfare is the biggest threat in the 21st century as it removes the ability of a country to respond and can cause huge destruction. And yet, cyberwarfare is not the only threat in the following decades, military drones are becoming a necessary tool of warfare and with the constant development of swarming drones technology, the threat is growing.

The current involvement of swarming drones in military warfare

Those who follow the news have noted increased discussion around an invasion by certain countries or terror organizations using swarming drones. Some of these incidents include the Russian invasion to Sweden territory on the Baltic Sea island of Gotland, the ongoing drone battle between Hezbollah and Israel and the usage of Israel’s swarming drones in Gaza, the underground drones battle between the United States and China, and the drone combat between Iran and Saudi Arabia.

Obviously, the list goes on and on. The ability to use swarming drones on the battlefield can be a huge advantage in terms of intimidation and collecting strategic military intelligence.

The future of warfare – Swarm drone artificial intelligence 

The world has already acknowledged the value and benefits of artificial intelligence, from automated robots to the use of artificial intelligence in medicine and other industries such as banking, education, and accounting. Yet, the use of artificial intelligence in warfare, and in particular swarming drones seems to be a nightmare for humanity.  In a video that was published by a joint project between the University of California at Berkeley professor Stuart Russell and the Future of Life Institute, a dystopian future of lethal drones technology has been presented.

Though the future’s vision shows the dangers of weaponized artificial intelligence drones, it was meant to intimidate the crowd and is most likely presents an unrealistic scenario, not due to moral issues but as it is a weapon system that can be easily neutralized by blocking its communications networks, producing electromagnetic pulses or simply using ceramic shields and helmets. Thus, this development seems ineffective in military vision; No army would want to have weapons with such clear weaknesses.

Countries with military armed drones in 2019

As of 2019, 40 countries own and use unmanned combat aerial vehicle, not including terror organizations such as the Hezbollah, Boko Haram, the Houthi rebels, and the Islamic State.

  1. The United States
  2. Mexico
  3. Chile
  4. Colombia
  5. Brazil
  6. France
  7. United Kingdom
  8. Spain
  9. Germany
  10. Italy
  11. Sweden
  12. Netherland
  13. Serbia
  14. Croatia
  15. Greece
  16. Cyprus
  17. Poland
  18. Ukraine
  19. Belarus
  20. Russia
  21. Kazakhstan
  22. Turkey
  23. Azerbaijan
  24. Botswana
  25. Turkmenistan
  26. Georgia
  27. Croatia
  28. Iran
  29. Iraq
  30. Suadi Arabia
  31. Pakistan
  32. India
  33. China
  34. Singapore
  35. Algeria
  36. Nigeria
  37. Egypt
  38. United Arab Emirates
  39. Israel
  40. South Africa

Bottom Line

Warfare has shifted from the classical model of war where armies send soldiers into the battlefield, to the use of technological tools. Swarming drones are becoming a vital tool for any active military worldwide and set the template for war conflicts in the following decades.

Similarly to cyberwarfare, swarming drones will also improve with time in terms of defensive capabilities. Governments and private companies are working on technological tools that can detect drones and extend the range of detection.

Another major factor that can impact global warfare is the ability of every country and terror organization to easily acquire military drone technology, which can be a huge advantage for small terror groups in their military actions.

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