Rights group slams US for observing patrol robot dogs
The US Department of Homeland Security said in a statement that it is studying the use of quadruped dog robots to patrol the country’s southern border.
The use of quadruped dog robots on the US southern border will lead to more death and devastation, a migrant rights group has said.
The sturdy four-legged robot dogs that weigh around 45 kilograms (100 pounds) will be used for border patrols. It can walk around autonomously or be controlled remotely. It will also send live video feeds to operators.
“We are creating the conditions that compel people to make the journey here, and now we plan to meet them with robot dogs?” Jacinta Gonzalez, senior campaign manager at Mijente, a Latino migrant rights group, told TRT World on Thursday.
“This approach will not keep anyone safe, it will just lead to more death and devastation on the southern border.”
The United States Department of Homeland Security said in a statement on February 1 that, with its Science and Technology (S&T) Directorate, it was exploring the use of quadruped dog robots to patrol stretches that could be difficult to reach for human agents.
“The southern frontier can be an inhospitable place for man and beast, and that’s exactly why a machine can excel there,” said S&T program manager Brenda Long.
“This S&T-led initiative focuses on Automated Ground Surveillance Vehicles, or what we call “AGSVs.” Essentially, the AGSV program is about… robot dogs.
It can navigate all types of natural terrain, including sand, rocks and hills, as well as stairs, according to Gavin Kenneally, product manager at Ghost Robotics, an industry partner that develops advanced AGSV systems.
How ‘killer robots’ can change warfare and border control
The company made headlines in October when one of its robots had a remote-controlled sniper rifle (SWORD Defense Systems Special Purpose Unmanned Rifle, or SPUR) at a trade show.
In one interview with TechCrunch last year, CEO Jiren Parikh said he didn’t know what the military would do with these robots.
Boston Dynamics competitor Ghost Robotics is now supplying its robot dogs for CBP use along the US-Mexico border.
—Jack Poulson (@_jack_poulson) February 2, 2022
“We don’t manufacture the payloads. Are we going to promote and announce any of these weapon systems? Probably not,” he said.
They also draw a line on where they are sold.
“We’re not going to dictate to our government clients how they use robots. We only sell to U.S. and allied governments,”
“We receive many inquiries about our robots in Russia and China. We do not ship there, even for our corporate customers.
The Homeland Security statement indicates that there are many types of illegal activity occurring in the difficult border areas.
“These activities can be carried out by anyone, from a simple individual, to transnational criminal organizations, terrorists or hostile governments – and everything in between,” said the team’s agent Brett Becker. CBP Innovation (INVNT).
There is no time frame for deploying the robot dogs, but the team is testing its functions in outdoor spaces.
The U.S. Border Patrol reported more than 1.6 million encounters with migrants along the U.S.-Mexico border in fiscal year 2021, the highest annual total on record. according to at the Pew Research Center.
From 2010 to 2019, an average of 3.5 fatalities resulted from high-speed pursuits by Border Patrol, according to the American Civil Liberties Union.
There were 14 such deaths in 2020 and 21 in 2021.
There were over 700 “use of force” incidents at the southern border over the past fiscal year, the agency said.
“Hundreds of thousands of people fleeing climate devastation, violence and economies ruined by catastrophic capitalism have no choice but to come to the US border to seek safe refuge,” the director told TRT World. campaign chief of Mijente, Gonzalez.
” Our answer ? Robot dogs. These tools of war must not be deployed.
Source: World TRT