RMA

Integrating Humans and Machines

Integrating Humans and Machines

The military holds an enduring an interest in robotic capability, and teaming these early robots with humans. From the use of remote controlled boats by the Germans in the First World War, unmanned, tracked Goliath robots filled with explosives used in World War Two, through to contemporary EOD robots and unmanned aerial and ground vehicles, military organizations have long sought to leverage robotic capability. At the highpoint of the Iraq War in 2006, the U.S. military fielded over 8000 robots in theater.

This article is the second of three that examines three aspects of human-machine teaming. In the first, I examined the rationale for human-machine teaming through ‘seven propositions’. This article examines key elements military organizations might adopt in a closer integration of humans and machines. It is proposed there are three areas upon which might be constructed a competitive strategy for future operations. The three areas provide background information, analysis and the possible applications of human-machine teams. 

Building a Future: Integrated Human-Machine Military Organization

Building a Future: Integrated Human-Machine Military Organization

At some point in the future, historians may look back on the current era as the dawn of a human-machine revolution or perhaps even the beginnings of the sixth revolution in military affairs. Williamson Murray notes in The Dynamics of Military Revolution that such things are rarely apparent in advance, and only obvious in retrospect and in the wake of remarkable battlefield success. While certainly the societal, technological, political, and military ingredients of such a revolution are present, whether this consists of a revolution in military affairs will be left to future historical debate.

#Reviewing The Future of Land Warfare

#Reviewing The Future of Land Warfare

“Fatigued by Iraq and Afghanistan, rightly impressed by the capabilities of U.S. special forces, transfixed by the arrival of new technologies such as drones, and increasingly preoccupied with rising China and its military progress in domains ranging from space to missile force to maritime operations, the American strategic community has largely turned away from thinking about ground combat.”

Why RMAs Still Matter

Why RMAs Still Matter

Often confused for one another, Revolutions in Military Affairs (RMA) are much less influential than the societal-military earthquake-inducing Military Revolutions (MR). The confusion is not simply semantic, but rather crucial as RMAs have little to no influence beyond the tactical and operational levels of war. RMAs, as Knox and Murray tell us in “Dynamics of Military Revolution,” are no “substitute for strategy.”