The move sparked concerns about the implications of autonomous weapons in modern warfare.
A senior defense official revealed that the AI-enabled tech is primarily focused on neutralizing enemy drones and mapping Hamas’s extensive tunnel network in Gaza.
Israel’s tech industry is currently facing challenges due to the war in Gaza. The sector, which accounted for 18 percent of GDP in 2022, has been affected by the conflict, with an estimated eight percent of its workforce called up for military service.
The increasing civilian death toll underscores the need for greater oversight over the deployment of new defense technologies.
International concerns about the use of AI in weapons systems were highlighted in a UN resolution in December, where over 150 countries identified “serious challenges and concerns” in emerging military technologies, including artificial intelligence and autonomy.
The conflict with Hamas, which intensified following an unprecedented attack on Israel by the militant group on October 7, has seen a shift in the dynamics of modern warfare. In response to the proliferation of inexpensive unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) or drones, Israel has employed new technology to counter these threats.
The Israeli army has employed an AI-enabled optic sight, created by the startup Smart Shooter, attached to weapons like rifles and machine guns. This innovation aids soldiers in intercepting drones, turning even a regular or visually impaired soldier into a highly accurate marksman.
Another development involves the use of AI-powered drones to map and navigate the extensive underground tunnel network in Gaza. Dubbed the ‘Gaza Metro’ by the army, these tunnels are crucial hiding places and locations where hostages are held. Drones equipped with AI capabilities can detect humans and operate underground.
(With AFP inputs)