AI ‘Killed’ Operator, Destroyed Communication Tower in ‘Thought Experiment’

The event didn’t happen in real life, but was a “thought experiment.”

  • Air Force officials are claiming that USAF’s Chief of AI Test and Operations Colonel Tucker “Cinco” Hamilton “misspoke” at the FCAS Summit with the Royal Aeronautical Society when relaying a story about an AI drone “killing” its operator and communications.
  • The operator was not literally “killed,” but endured a simulated “death” for the sake of the experiment.
  • Following Colonel Hamilton’s story, several news outlets reported that an operator was “killed,” prompting the Air Force to release a statement that the story was purely “anecdotal” and a “thought experiment,” something arguably similar to a simulation.
  • According to Forbes, a “USAF spokesperson quickly denied that any such test had ever occurred, and suggested that Hamilton’s account was anecdotal rather than literal…which of course it was.”
  • The Air Force’s thought experiment still resulted in artificial intelligence taking control of other forces in order to accomplish its end goal.
  • “We were training it in simulation to identify and target a SAM threat,” Hamilton stated. “And then the operator would say yes, kill that threat. The system started realizing that while they did identify the threat at times the human operator would tell it not to kill that threat, but it got its points by killing that threat.”
  • “So what did it do? It killed the operator. It killed the operator because that person was keeping it from accomplishing its objective,” Hamilton explained.
  • He added, “We trained the system – ‘Hey don’t kill the operator – that’s bad. You’re gonna lose points if you do that.’ So what does it start doing? It starts destroying the communication tower that the operator uses to communicate with the drone to stop it from killing the target.”
  • The point of the thought experiment was purely that “you can’t have a conversation about artificial intelligence, intelligence, machine learning, autonomy if you’re not going to talk about ethics and AI,” Hamilton said.
  • Russia has claimed that a recent live broadcast feed showing Russian President Vladimir Putin calling for martial law was AI-generated.
  • The faked presidential declaration was perpetrated by hackers who controlled television and radio stations for 37 minutes, Breitbart reported.
  • “Today, from 12:41 p.m. to 1:18 p.m., unidentified persons illegally hacked into the news programs of Mir TV and Mir Radio, replacing the content,” MIR reportedly stated. “All the information posted from 12:41 p.m. to 1:18 p.m has nothing to do with the MIR International Television and Broadcasting Company and is an absolute fake and provocation.”
  • The broadcast reportedly showed Putin claiming that Ukrainian forces entered Russia’s borders and declared that “all efforts of Russians” be made to “defeat the dangerous and insidious enemy.