"...The primary concern of Human Rights Watch and IHRC is the impact fully autonomous weapons would have on the protection of civilians during times of war. This report analyzes whether the technology would comply with international humanitarian law and preserve other checks on the killing of civilians. It finds that fully autonomous weapons would not only be unable to meet legal standards but would also undermine essential non-legal safeguards for civilians...
...As this report shows, robots with complete autonomy would be incapable of meeting international humanitarian law standards. The rules of distinction, proportionality, and military necessity are especially important tools for protecting civilians from the effects of war, and fully autonomous weapons would not be able to abide by those rules..."
Nice to get out ahead of technology for a change. I know less-than fully autonomous weapons like REAPER and PREDATOR have already created hand-wringing concerns about issues of legality...to no good purpose. "...distinction, proportionality, and military necessity..." should only come to question where the proximity of civilians to potential targets suggest a POSSIBILITY of harm. Even then distinction and proportionality should be subordinated to military necessity. Finally, are all civilians sacrosanct without question? If so, why? Let us be clear that warfare today provides countless examples where the "...civilian..." blur their relationship with our adversaries by virtue of active assistance while clinging to the inviolate sanctity of presumed innocence.
Minnie, have you read the writings of Ms. Farhat Taj?